Have you ever found yourself wondering: Is it better to work out in the morning or night? You certainly wouldn't be alone, as many studies have been conducted to try and figure out the optimal time for working out. When you're practicing proper fitness, finding the right time to work out is crucial. Now it's time to figure out what time is the best for you!
Morning Work Outs
Many people find morning workouts to be their preferred choice for a variety of reasons. One of the most common reasons cited is that when you exercise in the morning, you get your workout out of the way. Science also backs up morning workouts in some regards, as morning exercise tends to increase your energy for the rest of the day.
In fact, a morning workout is a lot like breakfast in that it gets your metabolism going. Simply put, you burn more calories all day long just from the sheer fact of exercising in the morning. A study conducted at Appalachian State University
also found that morning workouts are preferable if you want a better night's rest. So, is it better to work out in the morning or night? One more reason to go with morning is that it's been shown that people who work out in the morning are overall more likely to be consistent with their workouts. So pack your breakfast in your meal management bag
, and dig in post-morning workout session.
Morning workouts certainly have their benefits. But plenty of people like to exercise at night as well, and surely science backs that up to some degree too. The real factor to consider is that consistency is key, no matter when you choose to work out. But studies have shown that different fitness goals are
better achieved at certain parts of the day, and this is where working out later in the day comes into play.
Afternoon And Night Work Outs
Strength and endurance are both higher in the afternoon, while the likelihood of injuries is decreased. Exercising when body temperature is lowest, which is typically later in the day, around 4 or 5 p.m., results in improved performance and increased power. At this time of day, muscles are more flexible since your body is more warmed up than it is in the morning. Your reaction time is likely to be quicker, while heart rate and blood pressure are low. Protein synthesis peaks at this time of day, as well. Based on this, intense workouts such as weight training or hard cardio should take place during the late afternoon or evening.
Not only that, but the calories provided by the small meals you have packed in your meal management bag are the perfect fuel for a nighttime workout. A study conducted at the Clinical Research Center of the University of Chicago
found that those who hit the gym after work are more likely to achieve a higher degree of fitness than early bird exercisers. Blood samples showed that levels of certain endocrine hormones (cortisol and thyrotropin) significantly increased in those working out at night. Chalk this up as another reason to engage in more strenuous activity at night.
It turns out that the question "Is it better to work out in the morning or night?" doesn't exactly have an easy answer. You can make a case for either time of day, especially depending on your own status as a morning person, the type of workouts you prefer, and where your other responsibilities fall during the day. The important thing to remember is that as long as you work out consistently and stay nutritionally focused with your meal management bag, you'll achieve your fitness goals in no time.
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