When is the Best Time to Exercise if You Have a Day Job?

Written by: Shannon Polk, Kudos Team Contributor

The time of day you exercise can impact the effectiveness of your workout. We’ve outlined the advantages of working out in the morning, afternoon and evening so you can weigh your options and choose the best one for you! 


Less schedule conflict: The earlier you work out, the less likely you are to have a schedule conflict or excuse for not exercising. When my alarm goes off at 5 a.m., I don’t typically have work calls or personal appointments. 

Calmer environment: Gyms and running trails tend to be less crowded early in the morning, which means you don’t have to wait to use a machine or slow down to get around foot traffic on your favorite path. I tend to feel more focused and meditative with less people around.

Race medal holder


Healthy break: If you have the opportunity to work out midday, it can be a great way to break up the work day, reduce stress and increase your productivity. It’s the perfect time for those who tend to snooze through their alarm and feel too fatigued to work out after a long work day. 

More family time: By working out in the middle of the work day, you can have more time to prep your kids for school in the morning, spend a relaxed evening with your spouse or take your dog for a walk.

gymnastic medal holder


Social opportunities: Exercising during the evening workout rush (between 5 and 8 p.m.) means there may be more group class options at your local gym as well as opportunities to join a running club, soccer league or other team sport.

Increased nutrition readiness: If you know you’re working out in the evening, you can make sure you’re getting the right nutrients during the day. You can avoid feeling fatigued during your workout through proper hydration and healthy eating. 

Whether you prefer to workout in the morning, afternoon or evening, the most important aspect of your workout regime is consistency. I exercise in the morning regularly because I’m rarely able to fall back asleep after my alarm goes off, and I like to use morning workouts as a way to energize myself for the day. What time of day are you most likely to work out on a consistent basis?