When Is The Best Time To Exercise?
There’s been a long standing debate as to when the best time to work out is. Some swear that the morning is the best, while others are fully convinced that the afternoon and evenings are the best. The bottom line is the best time to work out is whenever you can. The fact is that there’s really no scientific proof that there is a no “best” time to work out. Below we cover the pros and cons of each so you can make an informed decision on what works for you.
Working out in the Morning
There is some anecdotal evidence that working out in the morning is the best time to work out when fat loss is the main goal. The thinking behind this is that the body can quickly tap into stored fat much quicker because you haven’t eaten for several hours. Most trainers and health care experts do not advocate working out on an empty stomach, especially in the morning after not eating. What they do recommend is eating a light breakfast/snack such as egg whites and a piece of whole wheat toast about 30-60 minutes before you work out in the morning. That way you have some fuel to get you going.
Many people prefer working out in the morning because it allows you to get it done and over with. On the other hand, it requires getting up significantly earlier than you may have or want to. If you want to get a 60 minute workout in you would have to dedicate at least 90 minutes or more in order to workout, shower, and get ready for work. For some people, that would mean getting up very early and being sleep deprived.
Working out in the Afternoon
Working out in the afternoon has several benefits. First off, it helps you re-energize for the rest of your day. This is the time when many busy executives and CEOs workout. This might work for them because they can take a little more time to get in a good workout and get ready to go back to work without a boss breathing down their neck. For the rest of us, we typically do not have the time to get in a good workout, shower, and then eat lunch.
Many people also hit the wall in the afternoon and experience the “2:30” feeling that leaves them feeling worn out and even a bit sleepy. That means they are probably not up to par to get in a good workout.
This time of day does work for many people because they schedule it into their day and do not have to make sacrifices like getting up earlier or staying up later.
Working out in the Evening
Many people prefer working out in the evening because they can de-stress after a hard day at work. While many people like to work out at this time, there are some disadvantages. Some people are simply too tired to hit the gym after working all day. It’s also difficult for those with children to take that much time out of their day. Many people have to go right home and take care of their family responsibilities. Also, most gyms are packed at this time. So if you’re looking to get in a quick and effective workout, this may not be the optimal time.
Proponents say working out at night works well and helps them relax, sleep better, and have more energy the next day.
We’ve covered the pros and cons of working out at different times of the day. There is no clear “best” time to work out, but one thing is clear working out is any capacity during the day is better than no workout at all.