Believe it or not, the best time of day to workout has more to do with your sleep schedule than your workout schedule. Breakfast may be the most important meal of the day, but it is not the most important time of the day and has nothing on the importance of a good night's sleep. That being said, setting the tone for your workout and your day in general has a lot to do with how you sleep. So, before you commit to what time you are going to hit the gym or hop on your own exercise equipment, it might be a good idea to take a look at what you're doing before and after the workout.
Before you can adjust your sleep schedule, you need to see how your current one works for you. You can do this by writing a few things down over the course of a week.
* Note what time you go to bed.
* Count how many times you wake up through the night.
* Note what time you wake up for the day.
* Write down how refreshed you feel when you do get up for the day. For easier visual assessment, it may help to use a numbered scale.
* Note what time you work out.
* Include any information on energy levels, motivation, and so forth.
A good night's sleep is the most important part of starting your day out right. When you feel rested and refreshed, you are more motivated, but you also have clearer thoughts and a better ability to manage the details of your day. By adjusting your workout time, you may be able to adjust your sleep status so that you get more benefits from the moment your head touches the pillow.
One study showed that people who went to sleep after working out in the morning were able to fall asleep faster than those who worked out later in the day. Conversely, those who worked out later in the day were better able to sleep through the night and enjoyed a higher quality of sleep than those who worked out in the morning.
Take a look at the results of your sleep assessment. Change your workout times to be earlier in the day, or later in the day depending on how fast you fall asleep and how rested you are after sleeping. Conduct the sleep assessment again to see which one gives you better results.