I ran an experiment this week: I wanted to see if morning truly was the best time of day for me to work out. I did this by working out later in the day.
I’ve done it before. I worked out at lunch for over two years and before that I worked out after work for about a year. There are benefits to both. The lunch time workout was a nice break in the day, especially after a frustrating morning. The after-work workout was a great way to decompress after a full day at work.
I thought I’d try them again to see if they worked better for me. The problem was, I was rusty. Working out away from home takes preparation and practice. Here are some tips I gathered this week to make these workout times easier.
Lunch workout tips:
Pack your lunch so you don’t have to think about getting something after your workout.
Pack a gym bag with the standard clothes shoes and deodorant. Bring an extra pair of underwear. You’re not going to want to put on the sweaty pair from your workout.
Take time to cool off after your workout because if you’re anything like me, you’re a sweaty mess.
If you don’t have time for or access to a shower mid-day throw some dry shampoo, baby wipes and body powder into your gym bag. Think ‘whore’s bath’.
Pack a towel in your gym bag so you can stand on it while you’re getting changed in the bathroom.
After-work workout tips:
Change before you leave work. Set your mind to the task.
Keep lunch light so you don’t feel weighed down come afternoon.
Pack an afternoon snack so you don’t go into your workout hungry.
Set the bar low at first. Just say to yourself “I’ll just do fifteen minutes.” You’ll probably go longer.
I came to two conclusions after this experiment:
Morning is the best time for me to work out. It sets my mind for the day and puts me in a better mood. And,
Once you’re used to getting up early and working out in the morning it’s really hard to change your workout time.
Even though I went back to a morning workout, the experiment wasn’t a waste of time. Now I know that if I ever need to switch things up I’ll have some good ideas on how to do it.
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