Morning or Night?

  • I am getting ready to start my first ever BFL challenge and wanted to know what people thought about working out in the morning or in the evening, and possibly what would be some pros and cons to doing either.

  • I do my workouts after work, which is 4pm.  I do it at this time because my gym doesn't open til 7am and that's the time I have to start work.

    This is my first challenge, so I have nothing to compare it to, but everyday I workout at the same time.

    I am starting week 6 tomorrow and have dropped a dress size in the first 5 weeks so my workouts at this time are NOT failing me.  I tend to eat 4 meals before my weight days (as I need that extra meal to lift heavy), and 3 meals on a cardio day, (so I can workout on an empty(ish) stomach/ 3 hours without food).

    As long as you hit your 10s it shouldn't really matter.  Some will argue that AM workouts are better than PM workouts, but you have to fit BFL around your life so you are more likely to stick to the program by working out at a time you can consistently find in your day.

    Its 80% nutrition and 20% exercise remember!

    Good luck on C1 - its gonna be emotional!

    Jules82

  • From everything I've read, including the BFL book, it is best to do cardio in the morning after a complete fast. After a complete fast (8-12 hours) your body will need to tap into fat reserves for energy. Even after a three hour fast, there is typically some energy still available in your blood from your last meal, therefore using that instead of burning the stored fat. Both will work, but the morning is recommended as the BEST time for cardio. Don't forget to wait a full hour after cardio to eat. The high intensity training will continue burning stored fat for about an hour. You should also drink water prior to the workout. Your body is roughly 66% water and necessary for every chemical reaction that takes place. Water consumption allows for an more efficient process of metabolism. Finally, intense exercise causes a release of endorphins, also known as the "runner's high" that makes for a great start to one's day.    

  • I tend to agree with Jules re: cardio in the am...I would like to be able to try that out and see if it would take me to another level but right now I would be sacrificing both sleep and my family's needs if I did that. My first son leaves to school at 7:05, my husband has to be out at 6:30 and that means I'd have to be to the gym at 5:45 get in get out and be home by 6:25. I want to both enjoy the workouts unrushed and build a lifestyle that is maintainable. I do not think 5:45 am workouts for me are maintainable. I would crash and burn by 6:00PM and I have 4 kids...can't do that.

    So for now...it is 9:15am workouts for me.

    Most important time to do your workouts are...the time you WILL do them!



  • I agree with Chiz, I wait a full hour after cardio to eat but still drink lots of water!  

    At the end of the day, if you can't workout in the mornings you haven't failed the program. Do something you can stick to.  I find working out after work helps me get my frustrations out of my system. I never take work home with me after BFL, so the program works for me on many levels.

    HIIT will allow the exerciser to burn up to 9 times more calories at rest for the following 24 - 48 hours after exercise.  This is what you should be concentrating on - hitting your 10s and letting your body react to it over the next 48 hours.

  • Cardio in AM! Weights in the PM... If you want fat loss AM before breakfast is better....

  • I think AM is going to work best and would be easier to turn into a routine for me and it wouldn't interfere with the stuff i do after I get off work.

    So based on the info so far, Cardio before food, but drink plenty of water before and after. Then eat about an hour after, right?

    And if I do Weights in the morning do I wait to eat as well?

    Fat-loss is my goal, I am a big guy and I am starting this thing out with a weight of close to 400 lbs. So I want to get the fat off and build some more muscle.

  • Overall, working out in the morning on an empty stomach is the best.  I personall do both weights and cardio first thing in the moring on an empty stomach.  It doesn't bother me at all.  Some people can't do that and some shouldn't (Diabetics).  You can read more about it at hussmanfitness.org.  Here's the link to the specific info on why doing it this way is best (see #4).  This site by the way, explain scientifically why BFL works. :-)

    http://www.hussmanfitness.org/html/TLEnergySystems.html

    I put the below info together (my words are in blue).  It's a compliation of inputs some have given on working out on an empty stomach.  I hope this is helpful as well.

    Argument for Fasted Workouts and When to Eat Afterwards

    It's in the book.  Here's your answer:

    "To enhance the FAT burning effects of BFL workouts, do them IN THE MORNING, in a fasted state (before eating)...Scientific studies indicate that fat is burned much faster- up to 300% FASTER - when you exercise in the morning as opposed to doing the SAME exercise in the afternoon." (BFL book, page 65, 4th paragraph)

    I also found a post from BFLMike (Mike Harris, 2006 50+ BFL Male Champion) about folks with diabeties.  He was specifically addressing someone with a concern but I think this could help someone here:

    "You most definitely need to be careful as a diabetic. Some diabetics have gotten into problems from doing early morning cardio on a fasted stomach at an intense rate. Most diets for diabetics are very similar to this body for life diet, though there is really no "free day" for diabetics–at least insofar as consumption of high sugar, high glycemic type foods is concerned. Ridding yourself of all the body fat and gaining some muscle might well put an end to your diabetes as well!"

    With anything fitness related, you all should be checking with your doctors before trying something new.  Most of us on this site are not certified experts unless we say we are.  I am not. :-)

    Here's the answer to the other concerns about timing of meals after workouts.  Remember the EAS slogan, "Don't Waste Your Workout." Read the containers of your Myoplex products, it's right near the running guy. :-)

    I found this answer in the FAQ's found at the BFL Library Tab above.

    Do I need to eat something before I work out and after?

    It depends on your goal. If your goal is to lose fat and gain muscle, we do not recommend eating before for at least an hour before your cardio workout, although some people find that eating half a nutrition bar or a piece of fruit gives them the energy they need to make it through an intense cardio workout. You’ll find out what works best for you. When it comes to post-workout nutrition, eating a nutrition shake or bar after a weight-training workout is very important for muscle recovery and muscle growth. After your cardio workout, you should try to consume a balanced whole-food meal or nutrition bar or shake about an hour after you finish. If your goals are performance- or sport-specific, you might want to try our Myoplex® brand of products, which are geared toward the more serious athlete.

    Love you some you...PERSEVERE!

  • Oh and may I add...the best time to workout is when YOU will stay committed to doing it on a regular basis.  In other words, although morning is the best time, any time is better than no time at all. :-)

    Love you some you...PERSEVERE!

  • BlackCap76 - on weight days, eat within 15-30 mon after exercising.

    Love you some you...PERSEVERE!

  • AM is usually 'easier' to schedule.  And IMO, makes it harder to want to skip it.  If you do your exercise in the PM after work let's say, if you had a really bad day at work, or a hard day at work you have to be careful or you get into a 'I'm too tired to go work out, I'll just go home and do it tomorrow'.  Life happens and maybe it would be just one day, but back when I would do the gym after work (not BFL just another time I was trying to get into shape) there were too many time it would be 1/2 hearted effort.

  • I find working out after work is a great stress relief.  Just depends on you and what works for you.

  • @Jules82,

    That's a good point!   There were nights that it was very good relief!!   But in my case, more often then not it was the 'not gonna do it'

  • Think of like sex- good morning or night and great stress reliever LOL

  • !LMBO @ HASAM too funny!!

    I used to ONLY workout at night.  I am SOOOOO NOT a morning person.  But when I decided to do BFL I also decided to commit to working out in the AM!  I think after 9 weeks of doing this I now prefer to work out in the AM!  I like that I can get to the gym and give it my all and then leave and not have to worry about it for the rest of the day and it leaves my evenings free to spend with the family!!

    I do agree that an AM workout is best for fat loss, BUT and PM workout will still yield results.  If you know you are not going to work out in the AM then stick to PM, but have a plain and stick to it!!

    Best of luck you will do great