One common question that comes to almost everyone’s mind while thinking of a workout is: “What is the best time for a workout?” Is it in the morning or in the evening? The debate doesn’t seem to end There are several reasons that play a key role in deciding the timing of workout. The morning people prefer morning time for a workout while the night owls prefer to sweat it out during the night time. However, most people choose the timing of workout as per their convenience without knowing the actual benefits of choosing the perfect workout timing. People choose their workout timing according to their college timing or office schedule.
But, there are several factors that play a key role in reaping the benefits of the workout. The factors that help in promoting muscle growth or fat burning after the workout have a lot to do with the timing of your workout.
- Hormones: Testosterone is the primary hormone responsible for muscle growth, and provides you the energy to workout at the gym.
When you work out in the morning, the testosterone level is high and it promotes better muscle growth. The energy is also maximum during the morning time.
In the case of evening workout, cortisol, the muscle-eating hormone comes down while it climbs by 75% in the morning. This is one factor that can help you decide the timing.
- Sleep pattern: When you workout in the morning, the energy level continues to drop and reach their minimum level by the time you go to bed. While this results in you going to the bed a little earlier, the muscle growth phenomenon is fastened.
But, when you workout in the evening, your body heat increases significantly. Just like a morning workout, it also helps in getting you a fast and good sleep. Good sleep is mandatory for good growth and it remains unharmed in either case. Hence, your workout timing neither affects your sleep nor your body growth.
The key benefits of working out in the morning include high testosterone levels that translate into high energy levels and increased metabolism. This helps you in doing an intense workout. Once you complete your workout in the daytime, you are done with the most exhausting work of the day and can design your eating cycle accordingly.
In the case of evening workout, the strength levels are maximum as you go to the gym after having 2-3 meals. This helps in lifting heavier weights and hence is the perfect timing for weight training. Another key advantage of working out in the evening is that you get to sleep just a few hours after your workout. Working out followed by a healthy meal and a good sleep in the best a person looking for gains can ask for.
Hence, we can conclude that evening workout is more suitable for weight training, and morning workout is more suitable for cardio due to some minor factors. However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t get desirable results if you interchange the schedule.
A perfect example to understand this scenario is a cricket match. Whether the players play in a day match or a day-night match, the intensity is the same. Once you start doing a workout at a certain time, your body adapts to it and starts reacting to the exercises that you do. Thus, more than the workout it is the diet and sleeping pattern that play a role in the slight differences between morning and evening workout results.
Therefore, the best time is whenever you can workout consistently. Also, there are people who prefer to work out with an empty stomach. While some like to hit the gym with a belly full of carbs and proteins. Those who like to work out with an empty stomach prefer working out in the morning. While people from the latter category prefer hitting the gym in the evening.
Apart from physical aspects, there is one mental aspect to choosing the workout timing as well. Those working out in the morning are highly unlikely to miss the gym unless they struggle in waking up early. However, when you workout in the morning, there are several reasons that can result in you skipping the workout sessions. Whether it is due to working late in the office of getting caught up in something else. There are several reasons that can force you to skip your workout sessions, hence, affecting your consistency.
In nutshell, it’s all about mindset and determination. Apart from that, there are rarely any significant differences that can prove that one timing is better than the other.