For the last seven or eight years, I have been a work out at night kind of guy. I typically work my job until about 6pm, work out, and then have dinner after my shower. This has worked for quite a few years and I have consistently worked out for at least 3x a week and on many weeks 4-5x a week. The health benefits have been great, but I have started wondering if I should work out in the mornings instead and what are the pros and cons of a morning routine are.
I really started thinking about this after I wrote my Keystone Habits post this past Wednesday. I was thinking about all the family dinners I am missing with my family. Though I always eat dinner with my wife, I am missing dinners with my kids as we don’t want them waiting until 7 or 8pm at night to eat. So, I researched the Pros and Cons of working out in the morning and wanted to share them with you today…
Pros of Morning Workouts
- If that is the only thing you accomplish that day, you will still feel accomplished.
- You will more likely make healthier choices through out your day, in both eating and actions.
- Your body is refreshed and repaired in the morning, after 6-8 hours of sleep, so you are more apt to get a better work out in.
- Workouts help to diminish stress, so you will be less stressed as you start your work day.
- People tend to dread their workouts, so eating the biggest frog (the workout) first thing in the morning can make the rest of the day seem easier.
- Recent studies show you can burn up to 20% more body fat if you work out on an empty stomach.
- You will give your metabolism a big kickstart for the day.
- Recent research shows that people who work out in the morning experience a 25% drop in blood pressure at night, helping them feel calmer and fall into a deeper sleep faster.
- It frees up your evening for family and friend time, which is very important to me.
Cons of Morning Workouts
- Ugh..you have to wake up earlier. That can be tough.
- People are generally stiffer in the mornings and not fully awake, so there is a higher risk of injury. So make sure you fully wake up and get loose.
- Working out on an empty stomach can be tough. I know I tend to feel a little sick when working out on an empty stomach. This can also result in a little lower energy.
- Your metabolism changes throughout the day, so having your biggest boost in metabolism is better when you have your largest meal of the day. Since dinner is typically most people’s largest meal, morning workouts could have a negative impact on your weight goals.
The lists don’t lie. There seems to be many more pros to working out in the morning than cons. True, I didn’t list the pros of working out in the evening here, but I think it is fair to say that we can determine that morning workouts are ideal. The biggest pros in my opinion is that there tends to be less distractions in the morning; you knock it out first thing and feel accomplished; and it frees up the evenings for family and friends time, or even the occasional personal project. I have moved to morning workouts for the month of December and will write a post on my experience towards the end of the month. Maybe you want to try it too. If so, good luck!!!