You’re on a very tight schedule day in and day out, but you always find time for the gym or a jog. Your fitness might be a priority, but sometimes it can be difficult to carve an hour or two out of each evening after a long day of work and in between your other obligations. If you find that you’re pressed for time when the evening workout comes calling, consider switching things up and moving your workout to the morning.
Make more out of your day
If you have a long, dragging day at the office, it can prove difficult to muster up the energy to head to the gym no matter how much caffeine or how many pre-workout supplements you consume. As Shape’s Moira Lawler points out, working out first thing in the morning can have the opposite effect: According to a study from The Brigham Young University, morning workouts can lead to increased productivity and activity throughout the rest of the day.
Bodybuilding.com contributor Melih F. Cologlu suggests that working out in the morning is a better way to maximize your time. After heading to the gym in the evening, you have to allocate time between working out and spending time with your significant others and decompressing in general. Working out in the morning, however, opens up your entire day and allows you a greater degree of flexibility.
Get more out of your exercise
Carly Berwick, writing for NBC News Better, cites a study from researchers in Japan that found workouts occurring before breakfast to be the most optimal for fat oxidation. Berwick writes, “There’s only good to be said for fat oxidation, the process by which large lipid (i.e., fat) molecules break down, which, in addition to being the kind of weight loss most people want, may also reduce type 2 diabetes.”
A study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition concludes that “caffeine is beneficial for high-intensity exercise of prolonged duration (including team sports such as soccer, field hockey, rowing, etc.).” As Cosmopolitan’s Elizabeth Narins points out, this pairs with another study published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine to suggest that your morning cup of coffee doesn’t just supply you with all the energy you need for a workout, but can also help maximize the number of calories burned.
Narins and Cologlu also note that working out in the morning can provide a boost to your metabolism, which in turn allows you to burn calories at a greater rate throughout the rest of the day.
Ultimately, the time that works best for you is the best time to get your workout in, but it might be worth the effort to switch things up wherever possible. Spend a week or more performing your workouts in the morning and you might just find a new routine that works even better than the old one.