Weight Loss
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Better weight loss w/ evening workouts vs. morning?


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Does anyone find that they have better wl results with evening exercise vs. morning workouts?  I have not documented it, but I have a feeling that I have better results with evening.  I am thinking that the morning one makes me much hungrier so I may ingest more calories throughout the day vs. if I exercise in the evening, it actually decreases my appetite and I don't eat after 8 so am getting less calories. 

Any thoughts or ideas?  Thanks!

22 Replies (last)
true, i do agree that working out in the morning increases the appitite. i personally like working out at night because it keeps me away from the fridge during peak binge hours.  however, i dont see any major change on the scales. boo!
#2  
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I read somewhere that this was recently tested in men and they found that those in the evening lost a little more fat.

Honestly I have been steadily dropping well over 130 lb and nothing makes more of an impact for me than an absolutely pure and strict food plan.  What I eat makes more of an impact than how much I eat. Working out at 5am or 6 pm made no impact other than wanting more food if I went at 5am.

I find working out at night to be the best. I burn all the calories I ate that day, and im not as hungry as when I get home from my morning work out. I work out 3 nights a week and on Saturday mornings. Also the scale reads nicer #'s the mornings after my night work our
#5  
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I find that I have more energy for my work out in the evening.  I started out in the morning to get it out of the way and cos I have 2 kids who would still be sleeping.  But it seems harder for me in the morning.
#6  
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To break down why it is generally better to work out in the morning....

 1.) Your body is still in fasting mode from you sleeping all night so your body will be using fat for energy as long as you don't eat breakfast or have any carbs.  By doing your cardio in the morning you will essentially be burning mostly fat.  At night you will have higher glycogen levels thus your body has converted to burning glycogen instead.  

2.) Just like eating breakfast will make you hungrier thoughout the day, so will workign out.  Your body gets a jump start on the day with both.  Since your body is no longer conserving energy or in starvation mode, you will feel hungrier.  For example if your basal metobolic rate is 1800 kcal/ day resting, by workign out first thing, you will boost your resting basal metabolism by 10%-20% (not sure the actually percentage) .  Your metabolism stays up for up for most of the day.  So think about this (1800 kcal/ day) X (110%)=1980 per day from not doing anything except changing your workout time.

 3.) Working out in the morning acts similar to your monring cup of coffee.  It's a good way to get ready for a day full of energy.

If you can get up to do some basic cardio you will have a major advantage in losing fat.  Even a 10 minute walk with your dog will drastically improve your resting metabolic rate.  However, I myself have a hard time waking up to go to the gym, so I workout in the evenings as well.  Also, if you are lifting weights, it's best to work in the evenings due to higher strenght levels.  However Cardio is always better to do in the mornng.

 

 

 

 

Totally agree with dabien310 and let me add that most studies show that people who work out in the AM work out more regularly and more often. Life doesn't get in the way at 5am like in the afternoon when work, schook, kids, friends, food, etc can give you excuses or reasons to not work out. I feel like I have tons more energy after a 90 min 4:45 to 6:15am work out. I am refreshed, energetic and I have got my metabolism going full bore after a work out and a good breakfast. I also agree about burning fat since that's all your body has to go on in the morning. I exercise about 6 days a week and it's all AM except for days like today where I walked for 90mins and tonight will go home and run a little before the wife and kid gets home.

The best time to work out is the one that is going to be the most consistent for you, for me it's AM 100% of the way. I get a work out and shower in before the wife and kid are awake and have the rest of the day to not worry about it.

 I'm with Cstefan in that diet counts for more than exercise does - and thanks to Dr. Lonnie Lowery I've even come around to the PoV that morning cardio can be good for you.

 I think that overall, consistency is the key more than the specifics of any one plan - as long as you're eating right and moving around more on a regular basis it almost doesn't matter what you're doing for exercise. Ok, I do love my lifting, and it's probably the most efficient exercise modality - but efficiency pales in importance compared to regularity.

 But note that people who work out in the AM and count calories have been shown to have the greatest long-term success in general. I believe that's because the commitment neccesary to work out in the AM implies a willingness to make the sustainable lifestyle changes neccesary for lasting weight loss - those of us who don't get up at 5 AM to run on the treadmill may be a little lacking in the self-discipline department. Or not - but I believe that's at least part of the explanation because it does get a bit easier to blow off a workout later in the day in case of scheduling conflicts.
Original Post by krenren77:

true, i do agree that working out in the morning increases the appitite. i personally like working out at night because it keeps me away from the fridge during peak binge hours. however, i dont see any major change on the scales. boo!

 Me too! That's it exactly. Working out in the evening means I'm not tired and hungry all day (which means ready to overeat or even binge if I'm stressed and unhappy). It also means I'm not at home eating an entire loaf of bread with peanut butter while watching TV.

As for scientific, metabolic reasons it would be different? Well, I don't think it would make all that much difference, unless you are more awake at night and thus can push yourself harder, or you eat differently before/after working out at night. 

I think whichever time you will consistently stick with, whether morning or night, is the best one for you.

The rest of us are just going to chime in and tell you our own personal preferences--I prefer morning, myself, for much the same reasons listed by archer531 and dabien310. I get it out of the way and I don't have to think about it again the rest of the day.

YMMV.
I'll agree with other posters - whatever time you can stick to is the best time. I know from experience that I get a better workout in the afternoon. I can workout longer and at a higher intensity level. However, I'm notoriously flaky about going in the afternoon/evening. It's too easy to make other plans after work. So I work out every morning before work instead.
I don't know if you have time but I find it best when I do both. Like I do my cardio in the am and then ab work or whatever in the pm, sometimes I do both at both times. I find that if I work out in the am I make healthier choices all day
Thanks for your input!  I agree with you guys too.  I like feeling energized from my AM workouts.  However, I have started integrating 2 evening workouts into my routine to shake things up a bit.  There are positive feelings when exercising at night for me, too.  I will see how it goes. 
#14  
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I was a navy corspman (medic) for four years and spent alot of time with Marines.  One of the things that I heard over and over again from those who worked out and read all the trustworthy literature is that working out before a meal allows the body to better process that meal, use it faster, more efficiently, etc.  

With that said, I have just started a basic regiment of jogging/running about 20 minutes in the evening about 3 times a week.  I also currently walk the 20 minutes to classes at the local community college approx 5 days a week.  coupled with the fact that I am cutting down my dinner portions by about half, and trying to eat small portions ever 2 1/2 to 3 hours instead of three large meals, I have seen some incouraging imporvements in the two weeks since I have started.  Before, my average end of the day rate was 164 - 166 (which is not the best weight to take I know, but it;s the one that is most motivating), and now it is on average 160 - 161.5.  Today's morning weight was also down by about a pound from average.  Since I'm a little overweight, and it shows, this is great stuff to see. 

In the end It's a little of both eating less and doing more.  If you burn off more then you consume, then you are loosing weight.  For some people this means eating less, for some doing more, for most a little of both.  That's been my experience at least.

#15  
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I workout before bed (around 10-11) and it does wonders. I started doing this 3 nights ago and lost 5 lbs. Mind you I'm doing the P90X routine though. Previous to 3 nights ago I was at a plateau. This helped me overcome it. 

I think whichever you will stick to is better. It varies person to person

 

Working out in the morning makes me too tired for the rest of my day, so I prefer to do it before supper (lolz I'm from TX) or before I go to bed.

It really depends on which one you like, and which one you'll do consistently. So long as you keep working out, it doesn't matter too much! :D
Original Post by melkor:

 I'm with Cstefan in that diet counts for more than exercise does - and thanks to Dr. Lonnie LoweryI've even come around to the PoV that morning cardio can be good for you.

 I think that overall, consistency is the key more than the specifics of any one plan - as long as you're eating right and moving around more on a regular basis it almost doesn't matter what you're doing for exercise. Ok, I do love my lifting, and it's probably the most efficient exercise modality - but efficiency pales in importance compared to regularity.

 But note that people who work out in the AM and count calories have been shown to have the greatest long-term success in general. I believe that's because the commitment neccesary to work out in the AM implies a willingness to make the sustainable lifestyle changes neccesary for lasting weight loss - those of us who don't get up at 5 AM to run on the treadmill may be a little lacking in the self-discipline department. Or not - but I believe that's at least part of the explanation because it does get a bit easier to blow off a workout later in the day in case of scheduling conflicts.


I'm with Melkor on this one. Maybe for different reasons. Things always happen to get in the way of working out. Kids need a ride, work demands staying late, traffic on the I5 is all backed up etc. The one thing they all have in common is that they won't impact an early am workout.

My workouts (during the week) take place between 4:30 and 6:30 am. Not once have I missed a workout for any of the reasons I listed above. None of my kids ever need a ride then, work has never called then and I've never been in a traffic jam.

He's right, it does take lots of discipline (or very little brains) to not just hit snooze and roll over.

People should workout when they have the time.  Research suggests that people exercise the best in mid-afternoon around 3-5.  I usually exercise in the morning, but sometimes I exercise in the afternoon too.

It's in point of fact a nice and useful piece of information. i am satisfied that you just shared this helpful information with me,  ... more wait ...

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