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Thread: When is the best time to workout?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Denver, CO area

    Default Re: When is the best time to workout?

    What everyone else said. The best time to workout is a time that you can consistently make - in order to make exercise a part of your daily routine. As everyone else noted, the time of day that works best for you may change over time. BUt it IS better to pick a time that works for you and stick with it, rather than vary the time each day. The more you can make your workout an "automatic" part of your routine, the more likely you will stick with it.

    I, too, have never seen any convincing SCIENTIFIC studies showing one time of day better than another. But there IS some evidence, as the others pointed out, that working out close to your bedtime may make getting to sleep more difficult. But everyone is different, so experiment and see what works best for you.

    If you DO decide to workout in the morning, it IS a good idea to have a light, easily-digestible snack beforehand - or else you may go hypoglycemic (low blood sugar). Try something like a yogurt/fruit smoothie, or some toast with a dab of peanut butter.

    When my kids were toddlers and nappying consistently, that is when I worked out. I would get dressed for my workout, get them down, and then literally make a beeline for my basement Nordic Trac skier. Baby-monitor at my side, I'd crank out a 30 minute cardio workout, and if they took a long nap, add some weight training at the end. It was great - then they gave up napping!

    Good luck,
    ACE-certified Personal Trainer
    & WW Lifetime Member

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Denver, CO area

    Default Re: When is the best time to workout?

    PS to my previous post (warning: bit of a rant coming...)

    I just finished my previous post, and it occurred to me that many of the questions on this forum are along the lines of "what is the PERFECT way/time/method/weights/reps/type of exercise/ratio-of-cardio-to-strength-training (etc. etc)?"

    I think sometimes (maybe more often than we'd like, and at a subconscious level) we get caught up in this all-or-nothing mentality. I mean, if we can't do it PERFECTLY, why bother, right? It also indulges our fantasizing to read about yet another new, "right" way to exercise, because that excuses our lack of progress. (If we had been doing it the "right" way all along, we'd all look like supermodels by now, right? So it must be HOW I'm exercising that's all wrong....)

    OH, and did I mention that the "gurus" out there have a vested interest in convincing us they have "the" solution for us? (For an introductory LOW! LOW! LOW! price of $9.95 per month....) No, my friends, we have the POWER to get fit all by ourselves, in all our imperfect glory. (OK, so we may not set any Olympic records on fire, but who cares!?)


    It's all about sticking with it for the long term folks. And you know what? It really doesn't matter WHAT you do, as long as you DO it - for an average of 30 minutes EVERY DAY. (Well, for one day a week, it's OK to do something LOW intensity - but still, get out there and take a leisurely walk, or throw the ball around with the kids)

    Moreover, DO WHAT YOU CAN. Maybe your day goes haywire, all your plans are upended, and you're not going to make that 30 day workout you intended to. Well, can you at least still do something for 15 minutes? 10? 5? Do SOMETHING, regardless. Hey, it'll help with the stress relief, if nothing else.

    I find this "expectation intervention" particularly hard to do sometimes, because I am USED TO doing a 30 minute, high-intensity workout. Anything different feels like it "doesn't really count," somehow. I have to take a mental break and remind myself that it DOES. Even if it's "just" some stretching at my desk, or on the train, or in a traffic jam, or a walk at lunch. Whatever. ALL movement is good (well, maybe not extreme sports!), and it doesn't have to be "perfect".

    'Nuff said.

    - Jennifer
    ACE-certified Personal Trainer
    & WW Lifetime Member

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