Morning Motivation Or Evening Energy?
Are you someone who bounces out of bed in the morning much to the great annoyance of the less-energetically charged? Are you someone who sensibly wakes up gradually as the day progresses ready to peak in the evening when all the trials of the day are almost over? It is hard to say everyone falls into either one of those camps but we are all at some point in life in both. The trick to when to exercise during the day is who you are and at what stage of the fitness journey you are on?
Should one exercise in the morning? To answer that you have to go through the flow diagram of 'well can i do that?'
Are you realistically someone who is prepared to exercise even at 6 in the morning should the plans of the day require it?
To be a morning exerciser you should be able to get up quite easily and prepare to have your routine changed to earlier in the morning because things just happen like that in life. Flexible waking-up times are a must if you choose this avenue.
You must also be able to wake up and go to at least 80% of your maximum fitness potential for the morning exercise to be worth it physically. No sense dragging yourself to a gym to droop over the cross-trainer for 20 minutes when you could be burning more calories sleeping.
You also have to be able to keep enough energy back for the rest of the day or at least be someone who can recover from even the toughest exercise in the space of an hour or two. This usually demands a degree of fitness as more seasoned fitness-goers are more likely to tick this necessity too.
That's a long paragraph of what is necessary for the morning motivator. It does seem that there is a lot to demand and you would be right. Thus it is fair to say that the morning option is not for those who can't summon a lot of energy in the morning in a fairly short space of time. It is however a good option for those who have a hectic schedule for the rest of the day. But we'll get that that later.
Should one exercise later in the day like after work? To answer that you get back on the flow diagram.
Is your daily schedule unlikely to have drastic changes? Real life pressures can mean time taken away from the evening of relaxation and the first thing to be sacrificed in that eventuality is the workout. An evening workout is purely advisable to those whose daily routine is less volatile and less likely to fall victim to sudden and great changes.
Is your daily schedule too rigorous? We can burn ourselves out during the day in the physical and mental sense. Is a workout after a hectic day really possible or even advisable? Would you still be able to summon at least 80% without fail in a workout? These questions need honest answers.
Are you disciplined enough to go later in the day? Whilst the previous points may have an impact on this question the same point however applies to whether we are able to definitely go and not find some trivial excuse not to go? This is definitely attributed to people who are new on their fitness journey. You are less likely to fall victim to trivial excuses not to go if you have been exercising for a long time before hand.
This equally long paragraph shows that perhaps the evening shift at the gym is for those who are more likely to stick to a fitness regime no matter what. It's not exclusive to experienced gym-goers but you have to be honest with yourself about going to the gym and the realistic ability you have to mentally say to yourself 'i want to go exercise'. The want has to be there for an evening workout to be acceptable and not a slow walk to giving up.
What if you fall into neither camps? What if you are the Tom Hanks on a wooden craft with his trusty Wilson flopping in the sea in between the two islands as set out above? Well then dear reader you have to swim to one. There ain't no in between. The trick is to be able to switch from one island to another when it is deemed necessary. If you share one trait from one camp and two from the other then be willing to jump from one side to the other. That way you will be able to say 'i will not give up'. Fitness 101 is quite simply the ability to adapt to a given situation. When it comes to time the more versatile gym bunny is always the winner.