Many people out there are quick to say that they do not have the time in their day to exercise. It is either too much for them to get up in the morning, or too strenuous for them to set foot into the gym or other exercise facility once that dreadful nine to five is over. The question is, if they were to try and exercise during their day, would it be better to exercise before or after?
The answer to this varies upon so many things which I am going to outline. When I am finished, you will be able to compare these concepts to your daily life and decide ultimately which one is better for you.
First off I am going to analyze the benefits of working out in the morning. I personally like working out in the morning myself. In the morning, you are fresh, and you are able to give one hundred and ten percent to your workout, provided that you are a morning person and are able to function before noon. Second, many facilities out there will not be nearly as crowded as they will be later on due to the fact that people will be at or on their way to work that early in the morning. A less crowded facility means a faster workout, which will take up less time in your day. Third, depending on the intensity of your workout, that activity in the morning could be enough to wake you up and get you ready and alert for the rest of the day, as opposed to that large cup of coffee that people typically drink to get the same effect. I say that it depends on the intensity of your workout because I know from experience that if I do a power lifting style workout which will be harsh on my central nervous system more so than my muscular system, working productively afterwords will be next to impossible. Another thing to consider is the fat burning properties of working out in the morning or when you first wake up. There are some studies that support the idea that exercise in the morning is more optimal for burning fat than waiting later on, since your body is ready to metabolize food in the morning, but at the same time, there are other studies that say that this is insignificant, so you really need to pick and choose what you want to believe.
Next I will analyze the not so great side of working out in the morning. Firstly, if you are not a morning person, this is going to be a nightmare, especially if you are not fond of exercise to boot. Second, If you are the type that likes to eat sufficient amounts of food before a workout, this may be difficult but not impossible to do in the morning, depending on your schedule. Second, there is the whole rush hour traffic in the morning to get through, just so you can get to the gym, exercise for an hour, and then go back into the same mess, whereas finishing work and then going may yield an easier drive. My last point is that depending on your fitness level, a morning workout has a good chance of draining you to the point where you may not be able to perform optimally at work. That is about all I can think of for the cons of morning exercise. Now let us get into exercise in the evening.
The pros of exercising in the evening after work are very existent, despite me making quite a convincing list for the morning. The first thing about this is that you have all day to eat and fuel your body and prepare for it. The next thing is that you also have all day to wake up and get ready for the workout, whereas in the morning you may not be so quick to wake up and potentially have to rely on having a cup of coffee or some other kind of stimulant filled beverage to wake you up. The next thing I can think of is sleeping better. If someone goes through an exhausting workout even more so after they finish work, they will likely so tired that they fall asleep within a few hours of getting home, which will lead to a better sleep and an easier wake up for the day coming up.
Now for the cons of working out in the evening. First off, depending on the type of job you work, if someone needs to go through an entire day of work before getting the opportunity to exercise, the laborious day may be too much for someone to actually get a workout in where they put in all of their effort. The next thing against it is that your day could affect your mood. What I mean by this is that if you workout in the morning, unless something really bad happened the day before, there is nothing that can really affect your mood when it comes to exercising. However, If you go through a day to find out that your best friend was fired, or that you have twice the amount of work you thought you had to do for the day, you may feel the urge to cut your workout short or not do it at all. Another thing to consider is the hours that a person works. Many people in the world work much longer than the conventional eight to ten hours that most people are used to, and those kinds of jobs may require someone to go home immediately after work and get their sleep in order to get ready for the next day. If someone works this kind of job and then goes to workout for an hour or two, they may be compromising their sleep or affect their sleeping patterns, and that obviously is not worth it, since we are trying to promote a healthier lifestyle by including exercise in someone’s regimen. Although I am a big proponent of exercise, I would much rather see someone get a good night’s sleep than exercise and compromise their sleep.
These are just thoughts I have when I think about the whole idea of “which is better”. Like I said before, I am a morning workout person, and I reap all the benefits of the pros of working out in the morning. I love working out, so it is a pleasant experience to wake up and get to do something I really enjoy in the morning before I really start my day. I have tried to workout in the evening or working first and then going to workout, just to see if I would like it any better, but I did not like it for a host of reasons. The facility was more crowded, I felt less motivated and more tired to do well in the workout due to enduring the entire day, and I am actually one of those people who are so in love with exercise that I think about it all day, and sometimes that gets in the way of my work and school performance. So like I said earlier, now you have an intricate list of concepts to go through, and you can see which ones match up with your lifestyle and ultimately choose which one you think is better.