Brandon Carter | Start Here

What's The Best Time Of Day To Work Out?

There really is no right time for everyone to work out, although theoretically, working out in the morning will elevate your metabolism so you will burn more calories in the day.

Personally, I always exercise at 6 a.m. on an empty stomach because studies show you burn more fat, plus it's out of your way for the day.

Always eat a good meal within one half hour to replace glycogen and protein stores in the way of a positive nitrogen balance.

Clinical testing has also shown that your body is more likely to shun these nutrients away from fat cells (adipose tissue) and to your muscles. You will burn anywhere from 50-100 additional calories per pound of muscle gained. This doesn't mean you'll get bulky from this plan provided you're eating fewer calories and not doing very heavy weight lifting.

Your caloric intake can be assessed by looking up your basal metabolic rate.

Just as important to any fitness routine is drinking enough water.

A recent clinical study found that 17 ounces of water consumed in one dose will increase metebolic rate by 30% (study did not indicate, nor were they able to determine how long this would last).

HIIT Cardio is better than any other type of cardio for burning fat without question.
If you've tried working out in the early morning and that hasn't worked for you, try late night work outs for a while and if you get better results.

If not, try the afternoon.

Here are some Pro's and Con's:

Morning Workouts


  • The majority of people who exercise consistently do so early in the day. It is easier to form the exercise habit through morning exercise.
  • Fewer distractions and schedule interruptions.
  • Can make time for exercise by getting up a bit earlier.
  • Raises your heart rate and metabolism to burn more calories earlier in the day and even more calories in the overall day than exercises at any other time.
  • Gives a feeling of physical energy for hours.
  • Improves your mental acuity for hours.
  • Cooler temperatures in summer.
  • Air pollution is lowest in the morning.
  • The body adjusts to your exercise time, so if you are training for a morning sports event, train in the morning.


  • Body temperature is at its lowest 1-3 hours before awakening, making morning a time of naturally lower energy and blood flow.
  • Cold, stiff muscles may be more prone to injury - be sure to warm up well before doing a higher intensity workout, and do gentle stretching.
  • If you do not enjoy morning exercise, you won't easily form a habit by choosing a morning workout time.

Noon Workouts


  • Can make a habit to walk and exercise at lunch time and break time.
  • Can use a walking and exercise partner at work, school, or in your neighborhood.
  • Body temperature and hormone levels are higher than first thing in the morning.
  • Can help regulate the amount of food you feel like eating for lunch, can help you avoid break-time snacking.
  • Improves blood flow to the brain so you are sharper in the afternoon.
  • Stress relief from work, school, or home stresses.


  • Time limits may not allow you to get in a full workout - any amount is good, but best if you can walk for 30-60 minutes or more at a stretch
  • Distractions and other commitments make keep you from walking and exercising at the appointed times.
  • Research shows that lung function is worst at noon.


Evening Workouts


  • For most people, body temperature and hormone levels peak at 6 pm. Exercising 3 hours before or after the peak will give your your best workout for both endurance and building muscle.
  • Research shows lung function is best at 4-5 pm.
  • Muscles are warm and flexible.
  • Perceived exertion is lowest - how hard you feel yourself to be working at exercise. So you may be able to work out harder or faster by doing so in the afternoon.
  • Can help regulate the amount of food you feel like eating for dinner.
  • Stress relief after a day at work, school, or home.


  • Distractions and other commitments make keep you from walking and exercising at the appointed times.
  • Need to allow one to three hours to wind down after walking or exercise to be able to fall asleep.