Is there a ‘best time’ to exercise?
Sep 29, 2023, 9:26 PM | Updated: Sep 30, 2023, 2:26 am
SALT LAKE CITY — When your alarm goes off in the morning, are you ready to work out? A new study suggests exercise in the morning may help with weight loss.
“It says that exercising in the early morning might help improve weight loss versus other times,” says Dr. Jake Veigel. “They say the word might in there. So, they’re not lying, because it might.”
The study published by the research journal Obesity has gotten a fair amount of attention recently, because everyone wants to know how to get the most out of exercise
But is there really a best time of day to exercise?
Dr. Veigel is the Medical Director of Intermountain Health’s Live Well Center at the Salt Lake Clinic. He points to the study’s focus on Body Mass Index. BMI is a measurement that uses your weight and height to suggest if your weight is healthy.
“Those people who exercise in the morning tended to have lower BMI,” says Dr. Veigel.
“The theory is exercise in the morning helps us burn calories quicker.”
But he goes on to explain, “It could be that if you’re exercising when you’ve fasted, before you’ve had anything to eat, than your body’s revved up to burn fat.”
And he adds, there could be other factors. “Another theory behind it is that it helps with your circadian rhythm. You wake up, you get moving right away. And that helps with your sleep cycle.”
If morning exercise doesn’t fit your schedule though, Dr. Veigel says no problem.
“I used to work out in the mornings, and I can’t get up early in the morning as much as I used to,” he says. “My schedule is more conducive to working out in the evenings.”
Researchers associated with the study say the same thing that Dr. Veigel does. The best time of day for people to workout, is when they are able to.
“Consistent exercise is one of the best things that you can do for your health. Guidelines are that we get 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity activity, that’s at a minimum.”
Dr. Veigel has another suggestion that is shown to help. Intermittently during the day get your heart rate up. Just a handful of stairs to climb, or jumping jacks mid-day is going to make a difference.