What should I do if I cannot exercise in the morning?

You need to exercise when you have time to exercise. Psychologically the best time to exercise is in the morning. The reason that most people feel that exercising in the morning is the best time is because people tend to find they feel better throughout the day if they've started their day with exercise.  Feeling better can be interpreted as feeling more productive and able to think more clearly. Many people also find that the morning is easier because they tend to have less obstacles. After an entire day has happened there are many obstacles that can get in the way of an evening workout. In the evening it can be difficult to get away from work and (after a long day) motivation and energy for exercise is less because people are tired. The evening usually spent having dinner with family. 

With that said, some people like to break up their day with an exercise program in the middle of the day. This provides people with a chance to get away and an opportunity to use exercise as a stress reliever. 

And, some people do like to exercise at the end of the day so that they can go home feeling energized and stress free which allows them to be more available for their family and friends. 

There are numerous other ways to get exercise in small increments each and everyday: walk or cycle to work, park further away from the office, take the stairs, walk around one or two blocks before going into your office, instead of sending an email walk and deliver the information personally, etc. Figure out what works for you and whenever you are able to get it in, try to make it fun! 

The best way to incorporate movement into your schedule is to just find ways throughout the day that you can burn calories if you cannot exercise in the morning. Some examples include going for a 30 to 45 minute speed walk during lunch, or go to the gym mid-day with a friend to help you reach your fitness goals. 

If you cannot exercise in the morning, do litte things during the day that will increase your activity level. Park farther from the door to your work, take the stairs instead of the elavator, if your job requires you to be stuck at a desk, get up and walk around a little more. Little things of activity may not seem like much, but they DO add up! Then after work, don't forget to stop and workout!

If you can’t exercise in the morning, try to find time during another part of the day. It is recommended to exercise 5-7 days per week. Each of those days should contain some type of cardiorespiratory performed at a moderate intensity. Two to three of those days should contain resistance training; Moreover, each day should contain flexibility training. Set aside roughly an hour for each workout session.

Don't exercise in the morning. Do exercise at any other time.  
Kelly Traver
Internal Medicine

If you can't imagine fitting exercise into your morning, schedule exercise into your day. At work, put exercise into your schedule just as you would a meeting. If you work at home, schedule it in your day planner and honor it just as you would any other commitment. You can go for a walk. And remember, three ten-minute sessions of activity are fine for the thirty minutes of activity (the minimum you should do each day). You can also get a treadmill or stationary bike for your office and do three ten-minute sessions a day as a break between tasks to both clear your mind and get in your exercise.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.