It seems like everybody has a different idea regarding the most effective time of day for working out. Some say morning is the most effective time of day, some say night, and ultimately many just work out when it is most convenient for them.

So, what time of the day is truly THE BEST time to exercise?

The answer to this tricky and often debated question depends on a variety of factors.

The Benefits of…

Morning Exercise

Exercising in the morning offers many benefits if you are the type of person who can get up and get moving early. This list of benefits shows that “the early bird” certainly gets more than just the worm.

  • People who exercise in the morning have shown to tend to be more consistent in sticking with their workout routines long-term.
  • Your concentration levels tend to be at their highest before noon, which can be helpful when you are performing a variety of workouts.[i]
  • If you get your exercise done early, you can’t skip your workout or not have time later in the day.
  • Performing aerobic exercise in the morning, as opposed to in the afternoon, may help improve your sleeping habits at night![ii]

Evening Exercise

“Night owls”, don’t worry: exercising in the afternoon to late evening also has its fair share of benefits. For those of you who like to hit the gym after a long day of work or school, here are a few reasons to feel good about that!

  • Your muscle strength is greater later in the day. [iii]
  • Your reaction time and aerobic capacity are also slightly higher.[iv]
  • Your flexibility is at its peak in the late afternoon or early evening. [v]
  • The endorphins produced during exercise can also help relieve anxiety. This can be extremely helpful if you happen to have a stressful day and need to blow off some steam; you may be able to achieve this with exercise.[vi]

Night Owl Tip: Just don’t try going to the gym too late as exercising or eating too late may impair your body’s urge to sleep.[vii]

As you can see, exercising in the morning and at night both have their benefits.  At the end of the day, what matters most is that you pick a time of day to exercise that fits your schedule and keeps you on the path to your goals! If you enjoy working out in the morning, and it’s working for you, keep it going! Whatever it takes to keep you fit and LIVING HEALTHY!

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