A common question I generally get is, “When is the best time to exercise?” There are a few factors to consider when answering this, so let’s dive right in.
If you are a morning person and love to wake up early and beat the sun, it would be advantageous to jump out of bed and right into the gym. Morning workouts help give you energy throughout the day as well as freeing up your schedule so you don’t need to structure a workout later on when you’re busy taking care of business and spending time with your family. If this sounds like you and it fits your schedule the best, then clearly this is the best time to exercise.
If mornings don’t work and your evenings are dedicated to family-time, afternoon workouts would be a great option. Those who get a lunch break (normally around an hour) have enough time to quickly hit the gym hard and then get back to work. This is great if you have an understanding boss who allows you to then eat your lunch while working at your desk. Something you need to think about though, is that the lunch-hour workout isn’t a secret. Many other people share the same thought process, so expect the gym to be busy during this timeframe.
Another afternoon option would be to hit the gym right after work. Again, this is generally a busier timeframe, but when you need to get in your workout, you’ll take the timeslot that you’re given. It also works out well that after your workout you have the ability to go straight home and eat a nutritious meal to start the rebuilding and recovery process.
If you’re a night owl and you’re able to hit the gym when many are looking to shut it down for the night and relax or get some sleep, you can hit the gym. The gym floor is generally slower during this period (American’s love their evening television shows) and you should have no problem getting in and out quickly. One thing to take note of is not only your dedication to exercise (at the end of the day energy levels can be drained and therefore you could have a loss of motivation), but some people find if they exercise late at night, they have a difficulty falling asleep. If you find this to be the case, try shifting your workouts to earlier in the day so you can get some good quality sleep at night to allow your body to rest and recover as well as wake up feeling refreshed and energized.
As you can see, there’s really no best time to exercise. What it comes down to is that the best time to exercise for you is based on your individual life and work schedule. Is there one specific timeframe that IS truly the most beneficial? In the grand scheme of things, no. Would I love for you to exercise in the morning in order for you to get it out of the way before something could occupy your time and have you skipping the gym? Absolutely. But, look at your daily schedule and how things are slotted in your schedule and make the best decision for you based on your time constraints.
To really get good results it helps to be on a intelligent workout and nutrition plan so that you’re not just spinning your wheels week after week. Online training such RockSolidTraining.com can help you with that.
Remember, if your health and fitness is a priority, you’ll make time during your day to exercise—no matter what. No excuses.
By: Matt Weik