Have you ever considered if it is more beneficial to work out in the morning or evening? I’m sure if greater gains could be rendered by precisely timing your exercise many of us would go out of our way to hit that mark.If you want me to be totally honest and give you the abridged version of the answer…JUST EXERCISE, period!!! The benefits of exercising on a regular basis far outweigh any minor gains due to the timing of that exercise. Also, each of us is different anyway, so you need to exercise when it’s best for you. A lot of that has to do with our circadian rhythm. This is more or less our natural sleeping and waking cycle which governs our body temp, blood pressure, alertness, metabolism, and other bodily functions. Yours is different than mine and mine is different than the next persons. I have read that in some cases you can train your cycle but for most of us it’s probably best just to just listen to your own body.
Different times however do have some advantages. If you have consistency issues with hitting the gym then an AM work out would be your best choice. This way you have it done before any of your regular daily responsibilities kick in. You are less likely to get caught up or busy with something else and make an excuse to miss your work out. Also, if you prefer a more solitary experience you’ll likely not have a crowd around at 4 or 5 AM.
One the flip side of that, if you just simply are not a morning person then don’t fight it. You’ll only be setting yourself up to fail. Just remain diligent and get your run or lift on after work. The benefits of exercise as a tool for stress relief is well documented so working out on your way home after a busy day on the job can take that edge off and get you back to your happy place. If you are a social butterfly then maybe you would prefer to arrange a group that gets together on your lunch break. This also helps with accountability if you know that someone else is counting on you to be there.
So in summary, it’s all about consistency, regularity, and what works for you. Personally, I like to get it out of the way first thing in the morning so I don’t have the anxiety looming around that I still need to fit in a work out. That works for me but would definitely not work for my wife, she prefers the evenings. Just don’t make it too late because that raises your heart rate and body temp which is not conducive to falling asleep. So try to pick a time and stick to it. But, if you miss the morning, get your nighttime groove in. If you have a big night ahead wake up a little early that morning. Results not excuses!!