Whether you are just getting started on your fitness journey or have been at it for a while, I’m sure you want to get your best results! I know I want to get the best workout possible. After all, we are already taking out some serious time out of our day to work on our fitness, so we want to know when the best time to workout is. After all, we want the best results from that time, right?
So what is the best time for you to workout? Short answer – There isn’t one. The best time to workout is the time when you will ACTUALLY do it!
When I first started on my fitness journey many years ago, I was obsessed with finding the right time to workout. I ready article after article and came to the eventual, horrible conclusion – You are supposed to do morning workouts. Now, I am seriously not a morning person. Not even close. But that is what expert after expert said, so I resigned myself to the fact.
To say that didn’t go well would be an understatement. There were days I managed to get up and workout at the beginning of my day, but those were far and few between. I will admit, I always felt really accomplished on those days that I did get it done! I had done the responsible, right thing to do! It was great! But more often, I was plagued with guilt the whole day for “being lazy” and not getting my workout done when I planned to. (We can talk about my negative self talk another day – that is something I still struggle with today)
But the workouts themselves didn’t always go very well either! I had a really hard time waking up, which led to a few clumsy injuries. And I had a harder time pushing myself too. So my workouts themselves weren’t as effective as I wanted them to be. I just didn’t have the energy I needed to really go hard!
The other issue that came up with this failure to consistently do my morning workout – I would then do my workout after work, but still try to get to bed early enough to wake up for next mornings workout. So then I would be trying to force myself to go to sleep not too long after my workout, and then getting frustrated that I couldn’t fall asleep.
You can see how this all got to be pretty terrible, right?!
A couple of years ago, I got fed up with this whole cycle. I was stressed all the time and felt pretty horrible about myself and my lack of willpower. Plus, I had started to notice that when I worked out after work, I pushed harder and still felt good, even though it was the “wrong time.” So I decided to do a bit of an experiment.
For one month, I would plan for my workouts to be after work. No more getting up earlier or going to bed earlier. This still requires willpower of course. There are many days after work where I don’t want to do much of anything. But I wanted to see if there would be much of a difference.
Not only was there a difference, but it was a big one! I started having more energy, sleeping better and getting more workouts in each week! I felt better about myself and just better in general! And this is when I really realized that there is NO best workout time. In the end, the time that lets you actually get your workout in is much better than some ideal time that doesn’t work well for you.
Do I always get my workout in after work?…No, I don’t. There are days where I get off of work and go home and basically collapse. But overall, I get more and better workouts in after work then I ever did when I tried to do them in the mornings! And I feel better every day because I am getting my workouts in regularly. And that is what really matters to me!
Now, none of this means that you shouldn’t workout in the mornings. If that works for you, that is great! Even if you aren’t a morning person but think it would work better for you, I would encourage you to give it a try! What I really want you to take away from this is that you don’t HAVE to workout at one particular time, and you aren’t failing or lazy if you can’t make yourself workout in the mornings. That might just not be the best time for you!
What has been your experience with timing your workouts? Do you love morning workouts? Hate em? I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences, so please leave a comment below!