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Exercise! Love it or hate it, let's motivate each other to just DO IT!

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Old 01-03-2009, 01:49 AM   #1
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Default What is the best time to exercise?

First off, I want to apologize for asking so many questions. I feel like the three year old who has finally found her voice and can't quit talking and asking, "Why, why, why!?"

Last summer (this is embarrassing) I joined Maxximus and went religiously every night - normally after 8pm and worked out there for at least an hour. Around the end of summer, I slipped a disc in my back and I'm pretty embarrassed to say that I haven't been back to the gym since.

Anyway, since I'm physically and mentally ready to DO this, I was wondering if my late night workouts were a good idea or if there was another time that might be better?

Really, the only reason I went after 8pm was because I work at a school and have the same hours as my kids - by the time we got home and I was done being taxi for everyone - it was dinner time, etc... so it was either get up at 4am and try to hurry and get back before my DH left for work at 5:30 or go after 8pm. Although I think at this point I could probably DO the early/early thing, I really don't want to. I'm mean and cranky in the morning.

I really would just like some input. I said something to DH about HIM fixing dinner ( ) but I don't know how that'd go.. maybe just a couple of days a week? Or is it better to exercise around the same time every day (or every other day, as the case may be) - I need a voice of experience here.
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Old 01-03-2009, 02:01 AM   #2
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The best time to exercise is when you can fit it into your day -- whenever that is and whatever works for you. Since I have three little boys and a busy life and lots of responsibilities, I do my exercise at around 9:00 pm, after everyone else settles down for the night. I've lost close to 50 lbs. and currently I'm maintaining -- apparently 9 p.m. works fine.

But really, there are a thousand different experts out there who have a thousand different answers to this question, but burning the calories during cardio, whenever you do it, is good for weight loss and so is building lean muscle mass with strength training. Just fit it into your life where it fits...that is the most important thing.
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Last edited by Schumeany; 01-03-2009 at 05:54 PM.
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Old 01-03-2009, 02:50 AM   #3
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I agree with Schumeany - it's whatever time works best for you.

I've tried exercising after work, but for me that's not very successful. If I've had a hard day at work, I get to the stage where I want to get home as fast as I can. I exercise in the morning now, and it has the advantage of getting things over and done with early in the day.

If you were successful in exercising in the evening, why not stick with that? It's all about what works for you, not for anyone else.
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:15 AM   #4
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I'm sceptical as to whether it has any additional fat-burning properties, but for me, excercising in the morning is a great way to keep myself on track for the day. I'm less likely to inhale an entire cake if I've already put in the hard yards physically.

That is the time that works best for me because I'm in a gap between finishing high school and finding something to do with myself, so I need a bit of a push to get up I would say just find the time that is most convenient for you- that way you'll find it easier to stick with it!

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Old 01-03-2009, 12:01 PM   #5
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I agree---the best time is what works for you!

I understand the dinner responsibility thing---here's a few ideas.
On the weekend throw together some meals that can be eaten over the week---brown ground turkey that can be used in chili, spaghetti sauce, burritos, tacos, etc.
How old are your kids? Even little ones can come up with simple dinner ideas that can be prepped over the weekend so there is little effort on "their" dinner making night.
Throw chicken in the crock pot in the morning before you leave for work. Steam some veggies, heat some baked beans, and serve with store-bought corn bread (the corn bread is for the kids!)....so easy.

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Old 01-03-2009, 12:05 PM   #6
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I agre with the above HOWEVER they say you are more likely to exercise if you get it out of the way in the am.

I am one of those 6am exercisers, and it is the greatest feeling to have it behind you and a mood booster, what a way to start the day.

but we all live in the real world and you do it when you can.

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Old 01-03-2009, 12:15 PM   #7
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The best time to exercise is when you can fit it into your day -- whenever that is and whatever works for you.

There are all kinds of studies about how working out at X time burns more calories or working out at Y time is more beneficial for muscle building or whatever. My opinion is this: If you're competing in some area of fitness, then maybe it's something you'd want to take into consideration, since that teeny-tiny bit of difference would give you an edge. But for most of us who are leading busy lives and just trying to lose weight and get into shape ... those fractions of percentages are just not that important.

I do mine in the evening because for me, I'm so very NOT more likely to exercise in the morning. *grin* If the choice for me is "hit the snooze" or "get up and go to the gym" ... well, the snooze button will win every time. I just know myself.

OTOH, I go on my way home from the office and it's gotten to the point that it's such a habit that I just .. do it. I often find myself in the parking lot at the gym w/out ever consciously remembering driving there. My car just points itself that way in the evenings.


Last edited by PhotoChick; 01-03-2009 at 12:16 PM.
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Old 01-03-2009, 01:08 PM   #8
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Yup, it's whatever works best for you. Really. Even if one time were proven better than another, if you don't do it, it doesn't help.

I exercise first thing in the morning. It's the only way I can be sure it gets done. Plus it just changes the whole tone of my day. It's easier to make great food choices all day after having that kind of a good start.
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Old 01-03-2009, 01:12 PM   #9
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Even if one time were proven better than another, if you don't do it, it doesn't help.
You know the God's honest truth is that if a reputable study came out that showed that working out in the morning caused you to double your calorie burn ... I still wouldn't do it in the mornings.

I am SO much of a night person, that having to force myself to get up in the morning to exercise would pretty much guarantee I'd never do it. But I will go in the evening ... and actually find it a great way to wind down from the pressures of the day at work.

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