When Should I Work Out?

Whether it’s for convenience or personal preference, chances are you work out at the same time each day — but do you know why? What makes a morning workout more appealing to some than an evening sweat session? Is one more effective than the other?

Morning Mojo
For some, an early-morning alarm is synonymous with “Rise and Grind” and a no-excuses attitude. Working out in the morning jumpstarts your day and helps cultivate healthy habits from the moment you arise. It’s hard to have a bad day when you’ve already run three miles, taken a spin class, or perfected your deadlift all before 8:00am. The endorphins built from your morning mojo will translate into a better mood, increased productivity, and faster metabolism throughout the day.

If you’d like to become a morning gym-goer, here are a few quick tips:

pack your bag the night before with everything you need for the next day.

– prep your breakfast the night before — like these overnight oats recommended by acac nutritionist Margaret Moses.

– sleep in your workout clothes.

– place your alarm clock on the opposite side of the room, making sure you have to get out of bed to turn it off.

Late Afternoon & Evening Exercise
Then there’s the evening crew. Heading to the gym after work is a surefire way to beat the workday blues. Bad day at the office? Blow off some steam on the treadmill or during a Boxing Bootcamp class. Make it social by hitting the gym, not happy hour — drag your cubicle partner along to build camaraderie, consistency, and accountability.

If you want to hit the gym after work, here are a few quick tips:

– keep a fully stocked gym bag in your car.

– snack wisely throughout the day so your body is fueled and ready to go.

– write your workout in your calendar and treat it like you would any other meeting or appointment — use a red pen to really make it stand out!

Midnight Motivation
And then there are those of us who prefer to work out at all hours of the night. 24-hour facilities allow you to find time to exercise no matter your lifestyle or schedule. If you’re a night-shift nurse with a night off or an insomniac who can’t sleep, it can be challenging to find something productive to do in the middle of the night. 24-hour clubs allow you to work out at the exact moment you feel the urge or have the time, without having to wait until the gym opens at 5:00am.

The key to making the most of your workout at any time of the day is this: consistency. Studies suggest that our bodies adapt to regularity. In gym speak, that means that working out at the same time each day will eventually lead to our peak performance as our bodies know what to expect. Find the time that works best for you and stick with it!

Visit the club location nearest you to see club hours and fitness offerings:

Charlottesville | Eagleview | Germantown | Hunt Valley | Midlothian | Short Pump | Timonium | West Chester