When is the BEST time to workout? That is a GREAT question! It has created quite the controversy over the years and both sides of the Morning or Afternoon argument have valid points. I have a STRONG belief that a Morning sweat session provides the upmost benefit in regards to your fitness level, metabolism and emotional well-being.
So drag yourself out of bed, throw your hair in a bun and let’s work it out first thing in the AM for these reasons below:
- Set the mood for your day! Have you ever went for a run, completed a P90X dvd, or perfected your chatturanga pose and thought “I sure wish I didn’t work out today.” Of course not! The greatest struggle with working out is literally getting started. Once you’re done you are so full of endorphins and pride that you are grateful for your sweat session. So if you do it in the morning you set a precedent for the day to be healthy and happy!
- Routine and consistency are key to creating success. I know I said in my fitness challenge post that I get bored of routine, but let me explain ~ my solution is to mix in other fun workout methods to my current routine (so I pretty much just modify my routine to keep it exciting). Whether your morning starts at 5:30am or 9:00am, it’s an easy way to stay on track by getting your fitness on before you have time to talk yourself out of it (like at 4pm when you are hungry & tired). You procrastinate too long and we all know it might not happen. So create an event in your calendar and stick to it EVERY morning!
- Burn more calories! Research has shown that morning exercise burns more calories than any other time of day. In addition, if you throw in HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) & Strength Training you will rev up your metabolism and create the “Afterburn Effect” which means you will continue to burn calories even AFTER your workout throughout the day! Um Yes Please!
- Energy for your workout & Energy for your day. You will be more likely to push it harder first thing in the morning, as the day can take a toll and an afternoon workout could be the victim of fatigue. It’s also a crazy awesome phenomenon that exercise, no matter how draining, actually creates MORE energy. So if you workout in the AM you may be less likely to crave that afternoon Venti Triple Shot Carmel Machiatto or dare I say nap?
- Clean eating for the rest of the day. When you start your day with exercise you are WAY more likely to eat healthy the remainder of the day (who wants to ruin a good workout?). It’s a pretty awesome domino effect, when you exercise, you feel better, you start to crave healthy food. Plus, if you workout in the evening you might be scrambling for dinner, starving and either grab the first thing in your pantry or stop for a double cheeseburger on the way home. So workout in the AM & feel confident in your food choices for the rest of the day (psst…meal planning post coming soon!).
- Sleep better. You might call it a night earlier if you know you have to get up earlier to squeeze in your workout. In addition, if you hit the gym in the evening it might be a challenge to relax your mind and body and put yourself to bed at a decent hour (aim for 8+ hours a night if possible).
So, Yes I believe it is BEST to workout in the Morning, however please READ the following:
*The key to changing your mind and body through fitness is to Just Do It! (Thanks for the encouragement Nike) So if that means lacing up your sneakers at 4am, 11am, 6pm, or 10pm that is better than nothing. Applaud yourself AM or PM for taking the steps (pun intended) to improving or maintaining your health – You only get one beautiful life. I wrote this post on the premise that if you have the option to workout in the morning, you will reap some pretty amazing benefits. I understand life is not easy, you work, you have kids, you have laundry…but I so desperately urge you to take the time for yourself…YOU deserve to feel healthy and strong…trust me friend.
For those following my fitness challenge, this week I took a 5:30am Spin Class at a new gym. I felt like this was a fitting post as I was SO productive (& food conscious) the rest of the day from my EARLY morning workout! It was great to jump out of my comfort zone and try a method, gym and time frame that I am unfamiliar with! And, yes, I am sore…but it hurts so good :)
*Not all exercise programs are suitable for everyone. Check with your doctor before beginning any fitness program to avoid/reduce the risk of injury. Exercise at your own risk. Portia will not be responsible or liable for any injury sustained as a result of using any fitness program presented and/or discussed on Obsessed by Portia.