Morning v. Night: When is the best time to workout?
It seems that some people enjoy working out in the morning more than in the evening. They incorporate a daily routine of exercises or go for a run. Some love to start their day active, others enjoy a good workout after they have finished all their work for the day. But have you ever wondered if there is any scientific evidence about whether one time of the day is better than the other? It can be said that any exercise, no matter if in the morning or at night, is beneficial to your overall wellbeing. It balances not only our body but relieves stress and tensions, helping us to feel fitter and healthier.
Most say that a workout in the morning is their preference because they get it done and don’t have to worry about it during the day. Experts argue that a workout in the morning increases the energy level throughout the day and it boosts metabolism and burns more calories during the day. The Appalachian State University found that morning workouts are also beneficial to your sleep. In addition, it has been shown that morning workouts make you more consistent during the day1 and provide you with a rush of endorphins. Research shows that a workout before breakfast uses the energy from fat stores instead of carbs from food, which is great for weight loss.2 Other studies concluded that women tend to eat less for breakfast and make healthier food choices if they workout in the morning. Their days also seemed more active. Furthermore, studies showed that your blood pressure is lower throughout the day if you workout first thing in the morning.3
As your muscles are cold after sleep it is important to include warm up exercises to wake the body up. Moreover, you have all the energy from your sleep to spend a part of your workout right away.
When planning your day you might also find it more easy to fit a workout in the morning because your evenings tend to have some appointments or social obligations, where you want to meet up with friends or go out to dinner. This can easily spill-over into your workout plans. If you have already accomplished it in the morning you are free and flexible at night. It also helps you to maintain a workout routine and a daily space for your workout.4
Another great motivation to work out in the morning is that fitness centers tend to be less busy at that time of the day. They seem to be busiest between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Less people workout in the morning and you can enjoy a less crowded fitness center with less waiting and smaller classes.5
Another beneficial psychological effect is that you start your day healthy and do something good for your health. You will start your day feeling healthy. Consequently, you tend to make healthier life choices when it comes to food and other stuff.
On the other hand there is evening workouts, which most people prefer. They feel stronger and more flexible after a day of doing something and feel the likelihood of injuries is decreased. The University of Chicago found that those who exercise in the evening are more likely to be fitter than the one’s that exercise in the morning. In fact, protein synthesis peaks in the evening and provides a good amount for your workout.
Not only you can enjoy a more relaxed morning but you can start your day smooth and increase your strength during the day to spend it at your workout at night. Our bodies are 20 percent more flexible later in the day because our muscles are more warmed up, which prevents injuries. As you’ve probably had breakfast and lunch you are fueled up for your daily tasks and can use the energy to get a good workout done. Additionally, it can have a very relieving effect after a long stressful day at work to just focus on physical exercise, feel the energy flowing and burn some calories. After a workout many feel more balanced and relieved.
Most people tend to hit the gym in the afternoon or evening. Hence, it is easier to find a workout buddy you can exercise with and support each other. Working out with a friend makes it harder for you to skip a workout because you have made a promise and don’t want to let him or her down. Another point is that if you are into workout classes most gyms offer more and a bigger variety of classes in the evening.
Not only there is evidence that you sleep better when you workout in the morning but there is evidence that a workout in the evening makes you sleep better, too. While some experts say that a high body temperature from your evening workout make you fall into a deeper sleep, others are convinced that people who exercised in the evening had a longer and deeper sleep than those who worked out in the morning.
Morning vs. Evening
As you can see that there are many benefits to both times of the day. Some might find it easier to get the workout done in the morning and others feel more energized for a workout at night. It is important to ask yourself how you feel. Are you more of a morning person that likes to workout in the morning and have it done for the day or do you feel more relieved when fitting your exercise in the evening and be able to release all the stress from your day. Both day times seem to have equal benefits that leave the decision on you to figure out which time fits best. If you are not sure what type you are, simply try to exercise in the morning for a week and see how you feel. Then try your workout in the evening for a week and compare the differences, advantages, and disadvantages. Mostly your body will tell you during the workout how you feel, where your strength level is and how the rest of your day feels. Then decide what time of day works and feels best for you.
If you are looking for some workout inspiration click here.
Becoming a morning person can be difficult but here are some tips and tricks to kick the day off right.
1. "Is It Better To Work Out In The Morning Or At Night?" Six Pack Blog. 6 Pack Fitness, 19 May 2016. Web.
2. Mudallal, Zainab. "There's A Big Difference Between Working Out In The Morning And At Night." Elite Daily. Elite Daily, 06 Aug. 2015. Web.
3. Birch, Jenna. "The Truth About What Time of Day You Should Work Out."Women's Health. Rodale Inc., 13 June 2014. Web.
4. Singh, Kyli. "Should You Work out in the Morning or Evening? An Investigation." The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 02 Nov. 2015. Web.
5. Cardiello, Jay. "The Best Time of Day to Work Out." Shape Magazine. Meredith Corporation, 28 Sept. 2012. Web.