With our hectic schedules, we hardly find time to exercise. Well, coping between a work-home balance, a social life, and binge-watching series, it can be quite hard to fit in workouts even though we all know they are essential to our overall health and well-being. Moreover, exercising at certain times during the day can help incredibly in augmenting fitness goals.
Morning and evening workouts have known health benefits and possible pitfalls, but for most people, the right time to work out is not about how many calories one can burn or how much weight one can lift, it’s all about how you feel while exercising and how to fit exercise into your daily routine.
Working Out in the Morning:
There are several merits to working out in the morning. Yes, one can get a workout schedule done, even before one start your regular routine. This means you will be able to start your day with more endorphins (happy hormones) and a good feeling that you have accomplished your fitness goal before 9 a.m., which most people won’t accomplish all day and that’s an incredible self-boost and motivation to stay healthy and fit.
Researchers reveal a positive impact of working out in the morning hours. According to a study published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, both participants -those of healthy body weight and those who were obese-who walked for 45 minutes daily, were less disturbed by tasty food, compared to when they failed to exercise.
People who scheduled morning activity also improved their physical activity level throughout the day. Furthermore, some of the incentives of hitting the gym in the morning include increased metabolism, which indicates that one will continue to burn more calories throughout the day as you consume them rather than at night-time. Additionally, working out on an empty stomach could help you burn 20% more body fat, which is a more easily attainable feat in the morning, before breakfast, than after a full day.
Workout in the Afternoon/ Night:
Certainly, morning is an ideal time to work out, however, fitting in exercise in the afternoon or evening hours has its proven merits.
A study has found that the body’s ability to perform peaks in the afternoon, where the body temperature rises throughout the day, enhancing muscle function and strength, enzyme response, stamina, and endurance for performance.
Between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., the body temperature is at its highest, which means one can do workouts during this window of time where the body is ready, potentially making it the most convenient time of day to work out.
Furthermore, oxygen uptake kinetics are quicker in the evening, which suggests that one can use resources more steadily and effectively than in the morning. Working out in the morning could also need an additional warm-up to the routine, which can divert one from the focus of the workout.
In the afternoon and evening, your reaction time is at its fastest, which is vital for exercises like high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or speed workout on the treadmill. Besides these, your heart rate and blood pressure are lowest in the late afternoon, which ultimately reduces the chance of injury while enhancing performance.
Additionally, the latest research discloses that high-intensity exercises less than 2 hours before bedtime can have a negative impact on sleep, which triggers physiological changes which can hinder sleep routine.
Exercising earlier in the evening improves sleep quality. Moderate-intensity exercise is mostly suggested as means to help you with a better sleep schedule.
Science and studies seem opposing, but one thing is very clear, working out is pivotal, no matter what time of day you do it. What actually matters is that you have to find the right time that works for you and that fits your schedule, and then stick to it. By maintaining a workout regimen consistently at the same time every day, you can easily attain your fitness goals.