One of the biggest hurdles when people start working out is finding the time to do it. Most people choose to go to the gym before or after work, but what option is the best for people with sleep apnea? Here are the advantages of morning and evening gym sessions and which is best for sleep.
One of the most significant benefits researchers have found with morning workouts is that it often impacts the productivity of the rest of your day. This is due to an increase in energy levels, alertness, focus, and decision-making caused by your workout kickstarting your day. Another benefit of morning workouts is the higher likelihood of consistency; it’s much harder to make an excuse to miss the gym when you bake it into your morning routine. There is also evidence that morning exercise boosts your mood throughout the day and are more conducive to fat burning.
There are a few downsides to early gym sessions, though, mostly related to physical performance. In the morning, your core body temperature is lower, making jumping into vigorous exercise dangerous. It’s critical to get a good warm-up when working out in the morning and avoid injury. You should also ensure you eat a carb-heavy meal before hitting the gym in the morning, as working out fasted can contribute to fatigue during your workout.
A later gym session solves most of those performance problems in morning workouts. One study found that it took 20% longer to reach the point of exhaustion in the evening. This increase in performance may be affected by a warmer core body temperature later in the day and an increase in testosterone later in the day, which is essential in strength for both men and women. A surge of endorphins associated with working out can reduce stress after a long day.
One of the more significant downsides of evening gym sessions is that they’re easy to push off and procrastinate. This can make a routine less consistent, which can cause you to miss out on all the benefits of exercise.
What’s Best for Sleep?
Most research agrees that there isn’t one best time to exercise, but they are sure that any exercise positively impacts sleep. Researchers have observed a shift forward in circadian rhythms of those who work out in the morning, especially for those who exercise outside. One study found that evening exercise negatively affects early birds but not night owls. The Sleep Foundation says, generally, there is no detrimental effect on sleep as long as evening exercise ends 90 minutes before bed.
When Should You Workout?
Great news, whatever works best for you is the best time to work out! The only way you can get these benefits is to go to the gym, so it’s best to exercise whenever you’re most likely to stay consistent. Take the pros and cons we listed and your schedule into consideration and make the best decision.
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