When is the Best Time of the Day to Exercise and Why?


For some, the best time of the day to exercise is simply to exercise when they can. Several items need to be considered when scheduling exercise into your daily regimen or as part of your daily activities. The first is time management. Just like all other life’s happenings and events, exercise should be scheduled as well. Without that scheduling of exercise, other items become a priority and exercise may be one of the items that falls to the way side and becomes an afterthought. Continually moving around or rescheduling your exercise is part of a behavior that may lead to not exercising at all and this will not allow an individual to meet or exceed their goal.

On the physiological side, there is a strong debate as to what time of the day is best to exercise. Should individuals exercise early in the morning when there stomach is empty and there energy stores (glucose and glycogen) are low? On the other hand, one may ponder if they should have a bite to eat to “break the fast” and provide the body with some readily available energy (glucose) to engage in exercise. Depending on what your goal is, weight loss, strength building, muscular or cardiovascular endurance, a trained professional will be able to assist and individuals in constructing goals and formulating a plan to meet those goals and then determining what time of the day may be best to exercise to achieve those goals.


Some individuals like to exercise during their noon lunch hour. Instead of taking a full-hour to eat lunch many try to squeeze eating and exercising in with showering and getting back to the desk. This may cause some individuals to “rush” there workout but with the proper exercise routine, those individuals can provide the body with plenty of movement and exercise to improve their health.


Some individuals like to exercise at the end of the day. Both afternoon and evening exercisers may view their exercise session as a stress reliever and those individuals are more apt to schedule their exercise session more frequently and consistently. Depending on their schedule, an individual may want to hold off on exercising late at night to not have the ability to be able to sleep because of the body’s physiological response to exercise.


The main goal of exercise is to take from Nike’s long time slogan, “Just Do It”. Do not be afraid to move your exercise sessions around to different times in the day. If you have events that you have to go to and cannot exercise at your usual 6 pm time slot, you may have to pre-plan and exercise earlier in the day at either lunchtime or early in the morning. Unless one is preparing for an athletic event or has some medical of physical condition that prevents them from adhering to a training modality or schedule, individuals should get exercise in when they can.



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