When it comes to working out, everyone will probably agree that it’s one of those things that you just try to squeeze in whenever there’s time. However, if you wish to maximize the benefits of working out, experts agree that the best time to do it is in the morning. Here’s why.
It aids in weight loss.
Cortisol and growth hormone (GH) levels are naturally higher in the morning. Both hormones play a significant role in metabolizing fat. When you work out first thing in the morning – especially pre-meal – you are utilizing fuel from your fat stores. Cortisol and GH further support fat metabolism, which means you are burning and losing more fat.
You have heightened alertness for activities in the morning.
A stress hormone, cortisol is produced by the body during fight or flight scenarios to keep it alert and on its toes. In the morning, cortisol is not only elevated, but also peaks at around 8 am. This means that you have more energy and alertness for exercise in the morning.
Exercising early corrects your body clock.
This also ensures that your body’s internal clock is primed for activities in the morning and rest in the evening, A study of the human circadian rhythm published in the Journal of Physiology revealed that if you exercise at 7 am, your body adapts by shifting your internal clock earlier, so that your body feels tired by early evening and you are forced to go to bed early.
It helps control blood sugar levels.
Cortisol also plays a role in managing and controlling blood glucose, which could explain why those who engage in morning exercise have lower risks for hypoglycemia compared to those who engage in exercise later in the day. A study published in the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology proves that.
It helps manage your appetite.
In addition to exercise aiding in curbing hunger by decreasing hunger and satiety hormones, doing it early also results in a better-managed appetite throughout the day. In a BYU study, researchers found that those who exercise regularly in the morning respond differently to food cues. Their brains signal hunger more intensely when they don’t exercise in the morning compared to when they did morning exercise.
It rejuvenates the mind and leaves it happy.
There’s countless studies supporting the positive effect of exercise on the brain. Exercise helps manage stress by releasing endorphins, or happy hormones. Endorphins give you a natural high and keeps your mind from engaging in anxiety.
Exercise early in the morning encourages your body to make these feel-good hormones, kicking off your day and leaving the rest of it on a happy, positive note.