Should you hit the gym right after you roll out of bed, or is it better to pump iron after you clock out of work? When it comes to exercise, timing matters. There isn’t unanimous scientific evidence that crowns one the champ. But morning and evening routines each bring a unique array of benefits. It’s up to you to choose which suit you better. Of course, the best time to workout is whenever you can consistently get yourself to go. Here are some morning workout benefits and evening workout benefits.
Benefits Of A Morning Workout
- Induces a positive mood. Feeling down during the workday? Improve your mood with an early morning workout. One study found that working out boosts your mood for 12 hours. This effect isn’t confined to a time of day, but it can help you survive daily annoyances like traffic and TPS reports.
- Allows “fasted training.” It may seem a little unorthodox to start off your day without breakfast first thing in the morning, but research shows an overnight fast can be beneficial before workouts. It helps control appetite, improve glucose tolerance, and boosts insulin sensitivity.
- Lowers blood pressure. A small, active investment in the morning can yield long-lasting rewards throughout the day. One study found that exercising 30 minutes 3 mornings a week caused middle age people to experience a 10% drop in blood pressure throughout the day. Their blood pressure even saw a 25% decrease by bedtime.
- Improves sleep. Millions of Americans suffer sleepless night. Morning workouts may be a possible solution for insomnia. They help maintain a consistent sleep schedule because. Also, research reports those who worked out in the morning enjoyed longer, better quality sleep than other groups who exercised later in the day.
- Improves cognitive function. An early morning workout stimulates growth factors that support brain development. Your memory will get sharper over time as your brain strengthens. In addition, earlier workouts are a corrective measure for age-related changes in circadian rhythms associated with dementia. No wonder an early run can leave you feeling so productive!
Benefits Of An Evening Workout
- Good for strength training. Cardio steadily raises your body temperature over an extended period of time. But weight training can be done in small intervals without changing your body temperature too much. In doing so, you don’t need to worry about disrupting your body’s temperature and desire for sleep. Working out in the evening may also be more preferable for those who feel too tired after a morning workout.
- Favors muscle mass development. Testosterone promotes muscle and bone growth in men and women. Our bodies produce more testosterone in the evening, which pairs well with strength and resistance training. Thus, you can build lean muscle mass easier and increase your metabolic rate while you’re at it.
- Lowers cortisol levels. Extreme exercise promotes cortisol because you’re inducing a level of physical demand that resembles the body under stress. It’s not necessarily a bad thing because your body needs more oxygen delivered to muscles and stress releases hormones to meet bodily needs during exercise. Too much stress, however, is linked to increased fat storage. Luckily for you, cortisol levels are lower at night than in the morning. So you can workout harder without worrying about the amount of cortisol in your body.
- Greater flexibility. Warming up is never a bad idea. Evening trainers will be happy to hear that the body is more flexible by the end of the day. Flexibility helps avoid preventable exercise injuries. Keep in mind that this primarily holds true if you’re naturally moving around throughout the day and not sitting in a stationary position.
- Less post-workout soreness. If you wake up sore from yesterday’s workout, chances are you won’t be thrilled about heading straight to the gym. The pain comes from Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS), and it lessens throughout the day. The good news is that working out at night optimizes oxygen use and tolerates a higher anaerobic capacity during endurance exercise. This reduces post-workout soreness.