Is the time of day that you exercise important to your exercise program? You want to make sure that when you put out the effort to workout, that you get the most back for your effort. The answer to this question is not just a right time of day that’s best for everyone, there are good and bad points about exercising at different times of the day, and differences for every person. Whether it is morning, afternoon or evening, everyone has a time that is best for them.
Morning is the best time for consistency, because you can control the time when you get out of bed. You won’t have unexpected things popping up that limit or take up your workout time. If you exercise outdoors, the temperature is also cooler in the morning in the summer so it will be more comfortable working out. The air is also normally cleaner in the early morning before all the pollution gets in the air, so you can breathe better. There is also some evidence that you can burn more calories if you do your cardio workout first thing in the morning before you have any food. On the downside, your blood flow is normally slower, muscles can be cold and stiff, and some people just can’t get excited about workout out in the morning.
Midday workouts can be great if you have a long lunch and a good place to workout. A lunchtime workout can give you a boost of energy and make the afternoon more productive and effective. You will increase your blood flow to your brain for afternoon work projects and be able to focus better. It can also be a nice stress relief if you have had a bad morning. Being able to do a midday workout will require you to have time and the ability to clear the morning issues from your mind and get motivated. Even a good brisk 10-minute walk can help your afternoon if you can squeeze it in.
Evening workouts are probably the most common time to workout, and there are some good benefits to working out in the evening, as long as family commitments don’t interfere and you have the energy to give 100 percent to the workout. The good things are that your blood flow, body temperature, hormones and lung function are all at their peak, and your muscles are warmer and looser. Evidence shows this peak time occurs in most people between 4 and 6 pm, which will give you better endurance and will help build more marine muscle. Exercising in the evening can also be a great stress relief from a hard days work.
Evening exercise can also create other problems in Minnesota in the months where it gets dark at 5pm and the temperatures drop below zero. You may have to change your workout venue for those months, but there is a good selection of clubs to pick from in the winter months so you can workout when it fits your schedule.
The bottom line is that there are good and bad things about whenever you workout. The most important thing is that you do workout. You may not be able to get the ultimate workout at all times, but if you can workout when you will consistently do your workouts, you will reap the most benefit from it. The time of day is nowhere near as important as making it a habit in your life and sticking with it.