If you could burn more calories, gain an edge on your workout, and get several more health benefits simply from working out at the perfect time, would you do it? Of course you would! But everyone seems to be unsure as to what time is best. Long story short, it all comes down to each individual- their level of energy and motivations, and their schedules.
Morning Workout Pros:
Consistency: What makes morning workouts great is that it keeps you consistent. Most of the excuses you hear from people is that they don’t have the time to workout because of their busy schedules. However, when get your workout done first thing in the morning it helps avoid the hurdles that may come up later on in the day which may make working out difficult. Also since the workout is done and over with earlier in the day there is no need to worry about squeezing in a workout later on in the day.
Well Rested: It may not seem like it, but your body is doing so much while you sleep. It is repairing muscles and helping your body recover and rest so that when you wake up you are good to go. Of course this is not always true, some people have difficulty sleeping. Try to make sure you go to bed early enough so your body has plenty of time to recuperate. Also when you wake up for your early morning workout, make sure you take some time to warm up and stretch to help your muscles wake up.
Domino Effect of Healthy Choices: Generally those who start the day with a killer workout will have more energy, eat more healthy snacks and meals, and will consistently keep themselves hydrated throughout the day. You basically cause a domino effect of healthy choices. Also working out in the morning kick starts your metabolism; in short, you are burning more calories simply by working out in the morning.
Morning Workout Cons:
Less Fuel/crash: Let’s be real, the early bird may get the worm but some of us no matter how hard we try will just never be morning people. Life does get in the way sometimes and you may plan to sleep early, but things come up, you cannot sleep, or you have a million things you have to get done by the morning so yea the last thing you would want to worry about is waking up early to workout. If you are generally person who is consistently tired, morning workouts may not be your thing because well let’s face it, crashing before you even start makes it ten times harder to put your all into a workout.
Awake and Ready to go: Yea, yea I know I said you are fueled in the morning, and while that is true for some of us it can not be said for everyone. Some people may be better equipped for workouts later on in the day. Later on in the day, you are more awake because you have completed daily tasks and activities, and you have also eaten a few meals so you will have a lot more energy to put into your workout. This may also be true because strength and endurance levels are supposedly highest around 4-6pm.
Unwind and De-stress: When you wake up, you have a fresh start, not much has happened and you are overall pretty relaxed. However, by evening time stress may start to creep in and overwhelm you whether it is because of a tough day at work, school work piling up, or something that just upset you. Research has shown that increased stress levels can cause weight gain because of a steroid hormone called cortisol which makes people more likely to eat and desire those guilty pleasure foods. So what are your options? You can channel that excess stress and release it through exercise. I am sure you have heard time and time again how wonderful exercise is and how effectively it relieves stress and allows people to blow off steam. The reason for this is because when exercising your body produces happy hormones (also known as endorphins).
Lack of Consistency: Remember that workout you planned for after classes or your workday? And then you realized you have another obligation and will not be able to make your 6pm workout session, well it happens to everyone and it may not seem like a big deal but it can be. To get the best results you need to be consistent with your workouts. With a lack of consistency and a schedule, it becomes very easy to get off track and derail your progress. This is much more of a problem for those who workout in the evening because many people schedule events, meetings, dinners, and parties in the evening. So by the time you may be ready to workout you may be too exhausted or it is too late and the gym is closed.
Everyone is different and everyone performs differently at and so naturally everyone will have their own opinion regarding the best time to workout. The key to getting the most you can from your workout regimen is to stay consistent. Make a plan and stick to it the best you can and all of us at Urban Boxing will try to help you all the best we can!