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When is the Best Time to Work Out?

When is the best time to Exercise?


In our busy lives, finding time for exercise can be challenging. Whether you're a gym beginner or a seasoned fitness enthusiast, one question often arises: What is the best time to work out? This article will explore the questions surrounding morning, midday, and evening workouts—supported by science!

No matter what time of day works best for you, don’t start your fitness journey alone. Find a club near you to get started!

Morning Workouts

Rise and shine, fitness enthusiasts! If you're wondering about the best time to work out, don't overlook the benefits of starting your day with a morning workout. Morning exercise can set a positive tone for the rest of your day, boosting energy and a sense of accomplishment. 

Let's explore the benefits of morning workouts to help you decide if it's the right fit for you.

The Benefits of Morning Workouts

When is the best time to work out? For many, it's bright and early in the morning. Morning workouts offer several advantages. First, you ensure that exercise remains a priority by getting your workout done before the day's demands take hold. It sets a positive tone, giving you an immediate sense of achievement and endorphin-fueled energy that can carry you through the day. Research suggests that morning exercise can help establish a consistent fitness routine, improve sleep quality, boost metabolism, and promote fat burning.

Exercising can kickstart your metabolism, allowing you to burn calories throughout the day as you consume them. Furthermore, studies have indicated that morning exercise can positively impact your sleep cycle, helping you fall asleep earlier and achieve better quality sleep. This can lead to improved recovery and muscle growth.

Do Morning Workouts Fit Your Schedule?

While morning workouts offer many benefits, one challenge of morning exercise is fueling your body adequately beforehand. Waking up and hitting the gym on an empty stomach can lead to feelings of hunger and fatigue. To overcome this, consider having a light snack before your workout, such as a banana or a small yogurt serving. This can provide the necessary energy to power your session without feeling sluggish.

Another factor to consider is consistency. Waking up early and motivating yourself to exercise can be challenging, especially if you're not naturally a morning person. It requires discipline and dedication to stick to a regular morning workout routine. But, once you establish the habit, your body will adapt, and it will become easier to get moving in the early hours.

In addition, morning workouts may require a more thorough warm-up. Your body temperature is lower in the morning, making your muscles feel stiffer and less flexible. It's crucial to take extra time to warm up properly and prepare your body for the exercises ahead.

Midday Workouts 

Looking to squeeze in some movement during your lunch hour? Midday workouts can be a fantastic option for fitting exercise into a busy schedule. You can recharge your body and mind by breaking up your day with physical activity.

The Benefits of Midday Workouts

When is the best time to exercise? For some, the answer lies in the middle of the day. Midday workouts offer unique advantages that can enhance your overall well-being. One notable benefit is the increase in energy and productivity for the rest of the day. Exercise during your lunch break can revitalize your mind, combat the midday slump, and improve focus and concentration. It provides a refreshing break from work and can help you return to your tasks with renewed energy.

Furthermore, midday workouts serve as an effective stress relief mechanism. Physical activity releases endorphins, which boost your mood and alleviate stress. Taking a break from your busy schedule to prioritize your health and well-being can result in increased motivation and a more positive mindset for the remainder of the day.

Additionally, midday workouts can be advantageous for individuals who struggle with evening exercise. By getting your workout in during the day, you eliminate the risk of scheduling conflicts or feeling too tired after a long workday. It can also be an opportune time to enjoy outdoor activities, such as a brisk walk or jog, allowing you to soak up some vitamin D and enjoy the fresh air.

Do Midday Workouts Fit in Your Schedule?

While midday workouts offer many benefits, one potential challenge is the time constraints and schedule conflicts that may arise. Depending on your work environment and commitments, finding a suitable time for exercise during the middle of the day can be challenging. It's essential to plan ahead, optimize your lunch break, and ensure you have access to suitable facilities or outdoor spaces for your workout.

Another consideration is the post-workout meal and digestion. After exercising, refueling your body with nutritious food to replenish energy stores is crucial. Midday workouts require careful planning to enjoy a healthy meal or snack. Prioritize balanced nutrition and allow time to eat and digest before returning to work.

Worried the gym might be packed with people working out on their lunch breaks? If you're a member of Planet Fitness, you can utilize the Crowd Meter on the PF App to check your club’s crowd level before squeezing in a midday workout. This helpful tool allows you to determine the best time to visit the gym and ensure a comfortable exercise environment.

Evening Workouts

When the day winds down, and you're looking for a way to de-stress and prioritize your health, evening workouts may be the answer. Exercising in the evening can provide a much-needed release of tension from the day's events and help you unwind before bedtime.

The Benefits of Evening Workouts

When is the best time to work out? For many individuals, the evening holds unique advantages for physical activity. One significant benefit is your body's ability to perform peaks in the afternoon and evening. As your body temperature increases throughout the day, your muscle function, strength, and endurance become optimized for performance. This means that your workout in the evening may be more efficient and effective. 

Additionally, oxygen uptake kinetics are faster in the evening. What does this mean? Your body uses resources more efficiently during evening workouts, allowing you to sustain energy levels and perform at your best. Quickened reaction time during the late afternoon and evening also makes it an ideal time for exercises that require speed, agility, or high-intensity intervals.

Engaging in exercise during the evening can have a positive impact on your sleep quality. Contrary to the belief that evening workouts disrupt sleep, a study found that individuals who lifted weights in the evening experienced better quality sleep and longer duration than those who performed the same workout in the morning. The release of endorphins during exercise can promote relaxation and contribute to a restful night's sleep.

Do Evening Workouts Fit Your Schedule?

While evening workouts have numerous benefits, one concern often raised is the impact on sleep. While exercise can improve sleep quality for many, intense workouts close to bedtime might cause some individuals to experience difficulty falling asleep. It's essential to listen to your body and assess how exercise in the evening affects your sleep patterns. Adjusting the timing or intensity of your workout may be necessary to promote a restful night's sleep.

Consistency and time management can also be a challenge with evening workouts. After a long day, you may feel tired or have competing commitments that make it difficult to prioritize exercise. Planning ahead, establishing a routine, and finding ways to overcome potential barriers is important. By making evening workouts a regular part of your schedule, you can ensure consistency and maximize the benefits.

Whether it's morning, midday, or evening, what matters is finding a time that suits your lifestyle and enables you to exercise regularly. Each time of day has its benefits and potential challenges, but focusing on regular physical activity is vital. 

To make gym visits more convenient for Planet Fitness community members, we've created the PF Crowd Meter as part of the PF App. This tool helps you check the gym's occupancy before your workout.

So, instead of worrying about the perfect time, focus on making exercise a consistent and enjoyable part of your routine. Listen to your body, find what works for you, and let convenience and consistency guide your fitness journey.