This blog post attempts to answer this question: what's the best time to exercise? But I have to mention up front that I'm a complete and total hypocrite on the subject. Why? Because all the 'experts' insist that the best time is in the morning and I don't do that at all. In fact, I don't really agree with this conclusion because I think the best time to exercise is when you're willing to do it!!! I have a slump every afternoon between 2:00 and 4:00 and exercise gives my energy a lift so that's my best time. Having said that, here is the concensus of the health industry …
Did you know that the actual time of day which you exercise is important if you are looking to maximize your health benefits? A regular exercise program helps boost heart health and maintain a healthy weight, and can even cut your odds of contracting type II diabetes. And by exercising in the morning as opposed to the evening or the middle of the day, you create a positive health routine that delivers multiple benefits beyond the physical.
Research has shown that those who exercise in the morning rather than at the end of the day tend to be more dedicated and consistent. When you think about it, it just makes sense. At the end of a long, hard and busy day, it is very easy to make excuses about skipping a daily workout session. Working out when you are fresh in the morning means sticking to this healthy routine.
You have fewer problems scheduling your workout sessions in the morning than at any other time of the day. Throughout a typical day, you are working busily in the home or at the office, and you may have several responsibilities involving your children. But when you schedule regular exercise in the morning, you can avoid any such scheduling conflicts.
The benefits of early morning exercise hang on throughout your day. Your body continues to burn calories for hours after exercise. That means that during the day, while you are consuming meals, your metabolism is boosted. This increases your calorie burn, and decreases your fat and weight retention.
Productivity is increased when you are alert. There is nothing like a good morning exercise program to get you going at the start of your day. And there are significant studies which show that once your endorphins get moving, your mental clarity can increase for anywhere from 4 to 10 hours after your exercise is over.
And although it sounds counterintuitive, exercising in the AM as opposed to the PM actually helps the quality of your sleep. Studies show that both women and men that exercise in the morning have healthier sleep patterns than those who exercise in the evening. This is probably because exercise is a stimulant. Exercise at night and your body has a harder time relaxing and allowing you to sleep peacefully.
When you choose to exercise regularly in the morning as opposed to some other time during your day, the benefits are plentiful and long-lasting. Better long-term results, fewer scheduling conflicts and improved productivity are just a few of the wonderful benefits you will enjoy when your early morning alarm wakes you to a regular A.M. workout program to start your day.