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View Full Version : Giving up the charade of the early morning workout


PeterPan09
02-23-2010, 08:04 AM
Ok, I'll admit it. I wanted to be one of those hardy souls that leaps out of bed at 4:30 am and heads off to the gym or the pool...and I tried it...but it's just not happening anymore. I'm hitting the snooze...or just plain resetting the alarm altogether.

So..this is it. I'm giving up the charade of setting that alarm for 4:30, getting up in the dark and heading off to the gym. I'm returning to my swim team roots and heading for the pool after work. I spent years going to swim practice at 6 and 7 at night during the week-maybe my body just likes the evening better.

Any other evening work out people out there?

pjlla
02-23-2010, 08:15 AM
Well... I work out in the morning when I can and when the schedule dictates it. But I work out in the evening when I take DD to swim practice and I don't have anything else I need to do during that time. I guess I kind of mix it up. But I will say that even though getting up early isn't much fun, I LOVE the feeling of knowing that by 7 am I am DONE with my exercise for the day!!

Do what works for you and the heck with what others do! It is more important to DO the workout, rather than worry about the time of day you are doing it...................P

FireDancer
02-23-2010, 09:09 AM
Me :wave:

I bring my workout clothing with me to work and hit the gym on the way home. It is too easy to not go back out if you stop home first.

PeterPan09
02-23-2010, 09:18 AM
I actually found research to back this up!! Thank you About.com

Research on the Best Time to Exercise
While there is specific research being conducted on this topic, unfortunately the answer to the question, "What is the best time for exercise?" varies based upon the specific question you ask, your training goals, and your exercise adherence. Here are some of the latest specific research findings:


Late Afternoon is Best for Exercise

Research shows that the optimal time to exercise is when our body temperature is at its highest, which, for most people is 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. (body temperature is at its lowest just before waking).
Strength is Greater in the Afternoon

Dr. Hill reported that strength output is 5% higher at around mid-day; anaerobic performance, such as sprinting, improves by 5% in the late afternoon.

Endurance is Greater in the Afternoon

Aerobic capacity (endurance) is approximately 4% higher in the afternoon.

Injuries Are Less Likely in the Afternoon

Afternoon exercise is the best if you want to avoid injuries for many reasons. We are most alert; our body temperature is the highest so our muscles are warm and flexible; and our muscle strength is at its greatest. These three factors make it less likely that we will get injured.

Morning Exercisers Are More Consistent (Not when you keep resetting the alarm! )

Even though afternoon exercise might be optimal from a physiological standpoint, research also shows that morning exercisers are more likely to stick to it that late-day athletes. help prevent injury be a good way to prevent injury and get maximum performance, but he said that the most important thing is a consistent exercise regimen.

Evening Exercise and Sleep

Most research supports the idea that exercise can improve sleep quality. But does exercising too late in the evening keep you up? Studies have shown improvements in sleep from both morning and afternoon exercise, so it's not yet clear if evening exercise keeps you up. One study even showed that vigorous exercise half an hour before bedtime did not affect sleep.

One thing that is agreed upon is that sleep deprivation can hinder sports performance.

heatherlynn444
02-23-2010, 10:52 AM
I would LOVE to workout int he morning but I get up at 5:45 as it is. I hate working out after work b/c I am so tired. I am more likely to do more/push harder in the morning.
But I am with you, the snooze would get hit over and over!

roselark
02-23-2010, 11:52 AM
I can't workout in the morning. I actually get sick...not sure why. I have found that I have to wait at least two hours after I get up. Since I am at work at that point (except on weekends), I workout in the afternoon as soon as I get home or on my way home when I have my Curves days.

SkinsFan76
02-23-2010, 01:18 PM
I never work out in the morning anymore. I had to do morning practices in HS and college for swimming and dreaded every minute of it. I can't stand getting up a minute earlier than I have to. I used to do all my workouts after my son went to sleep (7pm or so) but I've worked running into my lunch hour 3 times a week now and just work out at night 3 times a week.

It is really a matter of doing the work, not the time of day. There is optimum times to do everything, but if it is a matter of working out or not, then the time of day really doesn't matter.

Amy8888
02-23-2010, 01:46 PM
I'm like you. I've tried over and over again to wake up early to exercise but it just doesn't work for me. It is hard to stay motivated to exercise once I get home from work, so I just try to be flexible and do SOMETHING resembling activity each night. But overall, I think some of the best advice I've read about exercise was this: What is the best kind of exercise? The kind you'll do. What is the best time to exercise? Whenever you'll do it.

PeterPan09
02-23-2010, 02:00 PM
i'm like you. I've tried over and over again to wake up early to exercise but it just doesn't work for me. It is hard to stay motivated to exercise once i get home from work, so i just try to be flexible and do something resembling activity each night. But overall, i think some of the best advice i've read about exercise was this: what is the best kind of exercise? The kind you'll do. What is the best time to exercise? Whenever you'll do it.

i love it!!

3TinksAndAnEeyore
02-23-2010, 06:30 PM
I've always been a night owl and know I always will be. If I didn't have to get up for work or mom-duty, I would probably go to bed after midnight each night. And I hate to get up earlier than I have to! So, naturally, I prefer to do my workouts in the evening. I've been doing the C25K and with just 35 minutes or so of running required thus far, I'm not having to be gone for very long while DH gets the DDs ready for bed.

But, come summertime in Sacramento, I'll probably have to make a switch to morning runs or deal with 90 degree+ weather on some evenings when it doesn't cool down until after midnight. I'm working up to running the Disneyland 1/2 marathon and the longer runs will also almost certainly need to be done in the morning hours. Bleck! But, I'm motivated and motivation can usually get me up early (like being in the park at rope drop each morning of a Disney trip!!! http://scraporchard.com/forum/images/smilies/offtobed.gif.)

VernRDH
02-23-2010, 06:49 PM
I do both.

Mon is morning walk (for now, running once the weather improves).
Tuesday is both am and pm.
Weds is class at the Y at night.
Thurs is night walking on the TM.
Fri and Sat are "off days" for now, but once we start training again, it will be an am workout.
Sundays are am workout at the gym, once we start training it will be early am runs. Long training runs usually around 6am.:eek:

Do what works for you, just do it!!!

IWISHFORDISNEY
02-23-2010, 06:52 PM
I could never get up that early. I have to have my coffee after I get up then head out usually about 8ish and that is early for me. :rotfl: I have no idea what is gonna happen now that I have found a job. Good luck figuring it out. I used to love to work out in the evening before I had my son. It was the best time for me.

kirkson
02-23-2010, 07:38 PM
I've always been a night owl and know I always will be. If I didn't have to get up for work or mom-duty, I would probably go to bed after midnight each night. And I hate to get up earlier than I have to! So, naturally, I prefer to do my workouts in the evening. I've been doing the C25K and with just 35 minutes or so of running required thus far, I'm not having to be gone for very long while DH gets the DDs ready for bed.

But, come summertime in Sacramento, I'll probably have to make a switch to morning runs or deal with 90 degree+ weather on some evenings when it doesn't cool down until after midnight. I'm working up to running the Disneyland 1/2 marathon and the longer runs will also almost certainly need to be done in the morning hours. Bleck! But, I'm motivated and motivation can usually get me up early (like being in the park at rope drop each morning of a Disney trip!!! http://scraporchard.com/forum/images/smilies/offtobed.gif.)


same here (um, except for the mom part!). if I am doing a resistance or a non-running cardio work-out, I do it at night, for the same reason as you. I'm not a morning person and I just function better in the evening

for runs, I do those in the morning, any time of year, but especially in the summer. training for the DL half is tough, esp in those last few weeks. August runs are tough, even at 6 AM. The thing I like about running in the morning, though, is that I am DONE for the day by 8 AM. Also, for me at least, on the days I run in the AM, I often feel like @#%& when I am out running so early, but I feel GREAT for the rest of the day. Ah, endorphins:thumbsup2

The Running Ann
02-23-2010, 10:18 PM
I've done both over the years. I ran into problems with the morning workouts when I tried to move my entire workout schedule to that time. I began shutting off the alarm more days than I care to admit.

I now count myself chiefly as an evening workout person with either a run or a class at the gym immediately after work. I work out in the mornings on Wednesday (5:30 am class at the gym) and on the inevitable day during the week when I know I will not get a workout in after work. If I am particularly reluctant to get the exercise in on any given day, I will give myself a little break and do an abbreviated workout of 30 minutes or so.

With this more flexible schedule my workouts have become much more regular.

PeterPan09
02-24-2010, 08:02 AM
Well, my first evening workout was AMAZING. Not only did I get there (hey, it's better than what's been happening in the mornings) but I did a hard workout. The advantage of the evening was that I wasn't rushing off to anywhere, so I could spend a full hour in the pool.

I think you guys are right and the key is being flexible and not trying to lock myself into a particular time. I think part of my problem is that I was locking myself into a morning workout, and then if I blew it off-I didn't workout at all that day. It became another excuse to skip. Being more flexible will hopefully mean that I actually get more workouts in.

FireDancer
02-24-2010, 09:31 AM
Glad the workout worked out for you...man that sentence just doesn't look right.

You (and the PPs) are right, the workout you do in the evening is better then the workout you intend to do in the morning.

robinb
02-24-2010, 12:29 PM
So..this is it. I'm giving up the charade of setting that alarm for 4:30, getting up in the dark and heading off to the gym. I'm returning to my swim team roots and heading for the pool after work. I spent years going to swim practice at 6 and 7 at night during the week-maybe my body just likes the evening better.

Any other evening work out people out there?It's funny you say that! I work out while my DD is at swim team practice between 4-5 pm :). She swims for a YMCA team so I have no excuses. I also do mid-morning pilates twice a week.

kafitty
02-24-2010, 03:49 PM
i could never really get into morning exercise, i'm NOT a morning person at all (plus, i'm a waitress, so those late nights don't translate into early mornings well!)

i try to wakeup around 9:30-10ish, and i keep SlimFast breakfast bars in my bedside table so i can force myself to eat something soon after i wake up (otherwise i won't get out of bed/eat anything until hours later. i know, tough life i lead, but hey i'm 23!! :lmao:)

i get to the gym usually around 1pm...it just seems to be the time that works best for me. AND it's usually not so crowded - it's in between lunch time and when high school gets out, so there's usually me and like 10 other people in the entire gym. love it!

John VN
02-24-2010, 04:51 PM
I have ALWAYS been an early riser. Since I have far fewer mornings left to wake up, 60 years old, I take full advantage of those calm and quiet hours of the day.

I can't agree with the research since the early AM hours is when I am super charged and ready to go.

Best thing is to do whatever is needed to float your boat.

On Halloween last year I was out of the house at 1:15AM for the start of my 201 mile bicycle ride. Almost no one on the road and even saw one family setting up their Halloween decorations on their lawn.

p.s. Having never had coffee, maybe that has allowed me to just get up and go.

crewmatt
02-27-2010, 09:03 AM
Hey I kinda do both. During the warmer months (March-Nov) I row in the morning with a team. Then I either run in the am, or the evening. The BEST way to get yourself to work out consistently is to find a group of people you like who like doing it and will kind of hold you accountable (not like yell/scorn/etc but you know what I mean).

::Snow_White::
02-27-2010, 09:20 AM
I love mornings, but the only problem is I cannot stand getting up without taking a shower in the morning. I feel gross and it just ruins the morning, therefore there is no point in taking a shower, exercising, and then taking another shower that morning. I used to get up and do pilates before I went to school but then I decided that wasn't working for me. Now I exercise in the evenings, anywhere from 4-8 and take a shower before I go to bed. I feel more energized at that time.

I usually just do yoga in the morning because I don't get sweaty and it's more of stretching so I can take advantage of the quiet and not worry about taking another shower. I like to do yoga and watch sunrise earth on discovery HD now for about 30 minutes.

So, you're not the only one!

tiredsigh
03-09-2010, 01:44 PM
DH kept mentioning that I could start doing the 5:30 am classes at the gym :rotfl2: :lmao: Not happening for me. I like after work because I can get rid of all the stress from work that day. Plus, I have more choices for classes. I think that as long as you show up and do it, you're doing pretty well :confused3