April 21st, 2015
People regularly ask me what time of day they should exercise. My first response is always “whenever you’ll do it”. You should work with, instead of against, your regular habits and natural tendencies to fit it in when it’s the most convenient and enjoyable for you. But there are advantages to exercising at certain times of the day.
- You’ll feel great. Exercising first thing flushes away fatigue, early morning stiffness, and metal and physical sluggishness. Many people feel a strong sense of calm and control after working out (thanks to the controlled output of adrenalin) which is a great way to start your day.
- Bolts up your metabolism. A morning workout will leave your metabolism revved up for several hours afterwards – a definite benefit if your goals include fat loss. In addition, on an enzymic level, science has proven that exercise increases the secretion of “peptide yy” – a chemical that triggers your brain to choose healthier and more nutritious foods. Enzyme yy is like hiring a security guard to keep you protected from junk food.
- Especially if you work at a desk job, working out at noon or in the afternoon can be really beneficial. It is very beneficial for your joints to move in the middle of a mostly sedentary day.
- It can also help with mental focus/concentration and stress relief. Exercising mid-day improves circulation so you can expect to feel energized and productive in the afternoon.
- Promotes a speedy metabolism later in the day, and makes it less likely that your body will store fat when you go to sleep. It also prevents eating at a time that many people lose their willpower and give in to snacking, which is a definite bonus if your goals include fat loss.
- Great for strength building. Certain hormones (like testosterone) peak late in the day, which makes it an excellent time to build strength. Also, it’s beneficial for muscle recovery if you go to sleep within a couple of hours of your workout.
- Evening workouts can also be a great stress reliever, and precursor to a great night’s sleep.