FACT: Exercise is important for weight loss and weight management. Experts agree, but numerous exercise questions then arise. A recent study has helped to answer “What time of day should I exercise to lose weight?”
The researchers recognized that morning and evening are key windows of opportunity for people to incorporate exercise to their day. They studied 100 inactive adults with overweight or obesity. The participants were then divided into three groups: morning exercise, evening exercise, and no exercise. The activity prescribed was 250 minutes a week of self-paced treadmill based exercise. The study participants were evaluated for weight and cardiometabolic health risk factors.
FINDINGS: Compared to the no exercise group, participants in both exercise groups demonstrated significant weight loss, improved fitness, increased levels of physical activity, and positive changes to dietary intake. Following the intervention, the exercise groups continued to lose weight and their cardiorespiratory fitness persisted. The improvements were similar in the morning and evening exercise groups.
SUMMARY: Although there is evidence suggesting that exercising at the same time each day is important for long-term maintenance, the time of day is not important. Do whatever physical activity you enjoy. The specific time of day does not matter.
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Brooker PG, Gomersall SR, King NA, Leveritt MD. The efficacy of morning versus
evening exercise for weight loss. A randomized controlled trial. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2023;31 (1 ):83-95. doi: 10.1002/oby.23605