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What Is The Best Time Of Day To Exercise?

Yiwen Lu, MS, RD, CPT
March 18, 2023
March 20, 2023

Have you ever wondered… Is there a best time of day to exercise? Well, the answer is not what you might think. You’ll hear me say this a lot in the future, but really… It depends! The time of day you should workout must be highly personalized. Keep reading, or watch the video below to find the answer!

No matter what time you chose to move, exercise helps it all. Exercise improves sleep, stress, mood, energy level, blood pressure, and blood sugar numbers too!

If you are not interested in reading, click the video below!

Morning Workouts

The Hype: Fasted Cardio

Have your ever heard that fasted cardio is the most efficient way to burn fat? Before we dig into the morning workouts in general, let’s first define this specific type of workout.

Fasted cardio means that you are doing a cardio exercise on an empty stomach. So what does it imply? This means that all foods that you ate the night before had already been digested. As a result, your glycogen level is low so your body primarily burns stored fat as energy. Sounds very tempting, right? For healthy individuals, it works most of the time. However, it is not suitable for everyone, especially for people with diabetes or certain medical conditions that might lead to a drastic drop in blood sugar. The side effects can include dizziness, shaking, and even falling, which is suboptimal! So if you have any type of chronic condition, please consult your Care Team before proceeding to doing a fasted cardio.

Benefits & Drawbacks for Morning Workouts


  • Boosts energy level, focus, and productivity throughout the day
  • Increases mental and physical endurance
  • Maximizes fat burn, especially for fasted cardio
  • Might be easier to keep up since you no longer nee to worry about the unpredictable events that might occur later in the day


  • Might lead to reduced energy levels during workout
  • Might increase risks of injury due to tiredness, especially for fasted cardio

Afternoon and Evening Workouts

Benefits & Drawbacks for Afternoon and Evening Workouts


  • Improves sleep quality
  • Improves muscle strength and endurance supported by adequate fuel from foods
  • Improves performance due to higher body temperatures.
  • Decreases risks of injury due to your heart rate and blood pressure is lower at these times


  • Might be harder to stay consistent because the body is already tired from activities done in the morning and your daily schedule could differ
  • Might increase risk of dehydration due to the body might be depleted with fluid storage if you do not drink water consistently throughout the day


So is there a best time of day to exercise? No! Not at all. Whatever time that you can be most consistently with is your best time of the day to exercise. No matter what time you chose to exercise, be consistent! We know it’s hard at the beginning, but as you get used it, it will just become part of your daily activities, like eating, or brushing your teeth!

Do not break your exercise routine even on the days when you feel less motivated, just lower the intensity for that day. Run slower, lift lighter - that’s okay, just try not to skip as you know it’s not easy to get back on that wagon! Set aside around 30 minutes to 1 hour per day for around five days per week to move your body!