Exercise! - Working out at night. Less effective?

05-03-2011, 05:17 PM
I am not sure if this has been asked before but i wasnt finding it. I'm new to the Forum and have been doing great counting calories but i'm working on adding exercise to the weight loss plan. I have read conflicting information about whether working out in the evening is less or more effective and i'm kind of curious. I know that either way, its better to get some exercise in than none at all but is it really any less effective in the process of losing weight to work out at night?

For some background info...

I am REALLY not a morning person. I work M-F 12:30-9pm. So, it should be no big deal for me to get up in the morning before work to exercise. However, i go to school online and I usually tackle that when i get home at 9:30pm or so which means i usually dont crash until about 2am. I still get my 8 hours or so of sleep because then i dont get up to get ready for work until 10:45am. This schedule has worked for me for so long that it is really hard to change. Also, i am in the habbit of making dinner for me and my b/f when i get home from work at 9:30 so we usually eat around 10:30 ish on top of everything else. I'm working on coming up with a better plan for that so that we arent eating dinner so late but its kind of the only time of day we are finally both home together so not sure. (i'll gladly take some advice on that as well! because i eat dinner so late, i dont normally snack before bed and i dont normally eat anything until about 2 or 3pm during the day).

So, my thought is that it would be more beneficial for me time-wise to work out after work around around 9:30pm or so. Then i could come home and have a light dinner (i usually just eat protein in the evenings anyways, no carbs unless im having some veggies) for my recovery meal and then do some school work before bed.

Considering my schedule, would this be an efficient way to add to my weight loss plan or will it inhibit me from losing the weight in a timely manner?

I appreciate the feedback :)

05-03-2011, 05:48 PM
The best time to work out is when you'll do it. Why do you think it will be less effective at night?

05-03-2011, 05:54 PM
^^^^ Agreed! Do it whenever you can!

05-03-2011, 06:38 PM
Since you go to bed so late having dinner at 10:30 pm really isn't a problem. It doesn't really matter what time you eat overall.

I agree if you feel working out at night is best then do so, if you think before work is better then do that. It's what works for YOU. Me personally I am not into morning workouts and NEVER will be.

05-03-2011, 06:54 PM
I've done both. My personal opinion. Working out at night yields quicker results on the scale!;) But as everyone said....whatever/whenever you can do it...just do it (like Nike says :lol:)!

05-03-2011, 07:06 PM
I guess i've always heard that its not good to eat late at night because your body slows down after a certain time so you're more suseptable to storing it as fat if you eat late on night. I've also head that your body burns more calories after your work out if you're working out in the morning because you've got the rest of the day or something... But i'm pretty happy to hear that my schedule will work just fine because i really feel as if i'll be able to stick to it better! i might even be working overnights soon so i'll have to readjust then but i'm sooooo much more of a night person than a morning person!

05-05-2011, 09:43 PM
I work out at night, its when I have the most energy & motivation...works for me.
I think most people struggle with consistency, so I dont think it matters when you work out as long as its a consistent weekly schedule.

05-05-2011, 10:54 PM
I work out at night as well. My husband works 2nd shift and doesn't get home until 12:30 am. I meet him at the gym and we workout at that time. It hasn't slowed down my weight loss. I also eat the majority of my calories at night, and that hasn't slowed down my weight loss either. I used to believe all of those myths about not working out at night and not eating at night, but I have proven, at least in my case, that they are not true.

05-06-2011, 12:35 AM
I work second shift and I don't get home until 12 a.m. I also work 2 jobs, one of them part time at home that has me awake until sometimes 4 a.m., and then up again around 9:30 to work again for 3 hours before getting ready to come to work at the hospital. It's insane.

Because of that schedule, even if I wasn't working the second job, it's hard to do any exercise in the morning/day time. I'm either trying to wake up, running errands, or getting ready for work and thus, that eats up all that "exercise time" I may have.

I also don't feel like doing any exercise at 4 a.m.

So, I compromise. I take my 7:30 p.m. lunch break (30 minutes) to hit the gym in the hospital. I can watch Jeopardy and get at least 20 min of cardio in.

Our bodies are built to be naturally diurnal, and while metabolism does slow down during the night, neither exercising nor eating late has a significant impact on calories burned, as far as I'm aware. As long as you're burning calories, you're all good :)

05-06-2011, 04:23 PM
thanks for the feedback everyone. Its much more functional for me to be consistant if im working out at night after work. so i'll keep my schedule as is and hopefully see a weight loss!

05-07-2011, 06:23 PM
Oh wow, I am so happy to read this!! I only have time at night to work out, but I was wondering the same thing...you always hear that it's not as effective at night. But, I think it's true, whenever you do it, is the best time!! :)

05-07-2011, 06:34 PM
I'm more motivated in the mornings because I am a morning person. That being said, everyone is different. Some feel that they are more into their workout at night. Meaning they have more motivation and more push. I have more push first thing in the morning. I'd try both.

05-07-2011, 07:00 PM
I work night shifts, and I'm also more of a "night owl"-- I tend to get tired around 1am, and feel best when I wake up around 9 or so. Plus, working overnights means I really have to manipulate my sleep schedule for my days off. This means sometimes I exercise in the middle of the day, but more often than not, in the evening.

I do in fact eat at work, and even before I go to bed... and I'm still able to lose weight! Well, it worked last time anyway, before I fell off the wagon... hehehe :)

Good luck and happy sweating!

05-09-2011, 07:29 AM
I always work out at night too. I think I've read somewhere that exercising in the morning revs up your metabolism throughout the day, though I'm not sure how true is that. But I think, as long as you fit in exercise in your day, you'll be fine :]

05-09-2011, 11:27 AM
Echoing everyone else here, I don't think it matters. I exercise when I can. Sometimes in the morning, sometimes in the afternoon, and sometimes even in the evening.