Remember that whole new year new you thing that everyone kept saying a few weeks ago? That’s still a thing! We hope you’re still trying to make good on your new year’s resolutions, but if you haven’t gotten a good start yet, that’s alright. There’s still time for you to get a fitness plan together. However, when exactly are you going to work out? In the morning or afternoon?
The early bird gets the worm, there’s nothing like a sunrise, wakey wakey eggs and bakey, we’ve all heard inspirational quotes about getting up in the morning to work out, but they only seem to really apply to morning people.
However, there are actual benefits to working out in the morning, such as:
You get to say you did it. You’ll get your workout done and out of the way and will avoid the excuses not to go that may build up during the day.
You’ll get the freedom to use the machines that you want without gym intimidation because generally fewer people go in the mornings. There will be less people watching you and chances are your favorite cardio machine will be free.
More fat is burned in the morning, so this is great if your goal is to simply slim down. In the morning your testosterone peaks which is the best time to burn fat. Plus, with less calories in your body to burn your body will break down fat for energy instead. Also, AM workouts get your metabolism burning to help you burn the calories in the food you’ll eat later in the day.
Working out in the morning leads to better choices. In most cases once people work out they don’t want to ruin it with donuts and fast food, so they’ll pick healthier options instead.
In the mornings you’re more focused, which will help your mind stay on your fitness goals.
Plus, your body recovers during sleep, so you’ll wake up pain and ache free with repaired muscles that are ready to go.
But there are also downsides to morning workouts:
Planning to go to the gym in the morning can be stressful. You have to go to bed earlier, pick out your gym outfit and work outfit, plan breakfast, possibly get ready for work in a locker room, and more.
Some people feel energized after a morning workout, and it makes other people feel extremely tired all day. Also, since it raises your metabolism you may feel extra hungry, like a bear all day.
Your workout might feel rushed because you don’t have all the time in the world. You have to get to work on time!
It’s hard for some people to get up and out of the bed, to the point where it hurts!
Now for all of those people who can’t seem to wake up but want to work out, we have the benefits of afternoon workouts:
Less planning is involved. All you need is a change of clothes and motivated attitude.
More programs like yoga and Zumba are offered in the afternoon if you would prefer a different fitness activity from weight lifting or cardio machines.
Your body is warmed up and ready to go, meaning you’ll get to spend less time warming up and stretching. Plus your protein synthesis is at its peak for better weight training and muscle building with improved power and performance.
The afternoon is the best time for endurance building because you’ll have a higher tolerance to pain in the afternoon, and your lungs will be drawing in the most oxygen at this point in the day.
You’ll get to sleep in later in the morning which can be extremely stress relieving. Plus, you’ll work out all of your stress from the day to go home feeling good.
Along with burning the calories, you consumed during the day, you’ll get your metabolism up to help you burn off the calories from your dinner.
With all things great, downsides also come:
Working out in the afternoon can keep you awake! Be sure the exercise at least 3 hours prior to bedtime to give your body time to wind down.
You’ll have more time to come up with excuses not to go. Plus, your friends will invite you to social activities and you’ll have to pick between your work out or hanging out.
After a long day, you might feel tired and worn out. You’ll just wanna go to your favorite chair and watch Netflix instead of exerting yourself.
So, When Should You Workout?
Whenever you can. Recently I found out that I’m much more of an afternoon person after spending a week trying to wake up in the morning. You should see when your schedule gives you the most time to squeeze in a beneficial workout and stick to your plan.
Even if you aren’t a morning person after about a week and a half your body will adjust to getting up earlier so you can get the most out of your session.
When it comes down to it mornings may be the better time to burn fat, but afternoons are slightly better for building muscle and enhancing your endurance. In the end, there’s a very little difference between when you go because you’ll burn fat and build muscle no matter what time it is. Be sure to keep coming back to HealingRadiusPro for more workout tips and share your experiences with morning or afternoon workouts in the comment section below.
Allison Barfield is a content writer for Span Enterprises and has been writing since she first learned to hold a pencil, shortly after birth. After graduating from the University of South Carolina in 2013 with a B.A. in media arts she fell in love with marketing. She's been copy writing and managing multiple blogs ever since.