What is the best time of day to workout?
Ok, so this is a bit of a trick question, a workout is good for you whatever time of day or night you do it, it doesn’t matter if you are a night owl or an early bird, the important thing is to work out. That said, different times of day do have different benefits:
Morning Early Bird workouts
The morning workout is great for getting your day started and you don’t have the whole day ahead to think of an excuse not to go to the gym. It's great for weight loss and fat burning as you can exercise in a fasted state and your body will more readily access your fat stores. It can improve your mental function and performance at work, studies have shown it can even improve the quality of your sleep.
Night Owl evening workouts
If you can’t face the prospect of dragging yourself out of bed in the morning, never mind getting yourself to the gym and showered before work, chances are you like to workout in the evening. It can be easier to head home after a hard day at work than go to the gym, so you will need real motivation and willpower to get there. However when you do you will find yourself up to 20% stronger at this time of day, you have been moving around and warming up all day so your body will be at its muscular peak, plus, higher testosterone levels at this time of day can lead to greater gains. Without the time pressure of having to go to work, you can relax and enjoy your session more, de-stress and be more social.
Lunchtime midday workouts
If you don’t like getting out of bed, but you want your evenings free, the lunchtime workout could be for you. It’s a bit time pressured, but it will stop you from stuffing your face in the staff canteen and it will force you to focus to get the job done. Working out in the middle of the day has been shown to increase energy in the afternoon, helping you to avoid the post lunch slump and boost your mood for the remainder of the working day. The big bonus here is you get to lie in and you get to keep your evenings for yourself. Result!
So what is the best time of day to workout? They all are and you can mix it up as much as you like, strength training in the evening, fat burning in the morning and HIIT at lunchtimes might just be the perfect combination.