Everyone has their own “best time of day” to exercise. Some can’t imagine their day starting without a morning walk. Others won’t miss an evening without relaxing yoga.
Exercise routines are as different as the people who have them. Is there really a “best” time of day to work out? No, there’s not — at least not a set time that’s best for everyone. But on the other hand, there might be a “best time” depending on you personally.
Personalize Your Exercise Routine
You will be more likely to stick to your fitness goals if you make them your own. You should enjoy getting active in a way that’s meaningful and fun for you. You might not be the kind of person who likes to hit the gym every day after work, but you might like taking long walks in the morning. The key to making exercise a habit is to make it work for you. That being said, there are some universal benefits to working out at different times of the day.
Time of Day: Morning
More Time to Exercise
Exercising in the morning is great for avoiding distractions. As the day goes on, you are more likely to get pulled away. Work, family, friends and chores all tend to creep up. If you exercise before your day truly starts, you might be able to focus more.
Regular exercise boosts your energy levels. This can give you more motivation to check-off your “To Do” list. A morning workout followed by an invigorating shower could be great for productivity and finding that extra kick in your step.
Exercising in the morning can set you up for healthy decision-making all day. For example, a jog before work can deter you from buying a doughnut for breakfast at the drive-thru. It puts your goals into perspective so they’re always on your mind.
Time of Day: Afternoon/Evening
Waking up to exercise is hard if you’re not a morning person. Just moving around and getting tasks done can be a struggle early on in the day. If you exercise later, you might have more rhythm or footing after having time to adjust to your day.
Your body builds more stress as the day goes on. Exercising later on can release endorphins and help you shake the stress of the day off. For example, a tough day at work might not feel so bad if you stop by the gym on your way home.
In the mornings, you probably think about your plans for the day. You’ve likely cut a few workouts short if you’re running late or worried about time. If you exercise in the evening when your day is said and done, you can give it more time.
Succeeding at your fitness goals is about learning what works for you. Know your schedule, your preferences, and the kinds of workouts you enjoy doing. Take those factors into consideration when you plan to exercise. You’ll likely find that you exercise more effectively when you feel comfortable with the schedule you’ve set up.