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Morning vs. Evening Run: Which is Better?

By Born Tough on

1. Running

Running is a form of cardio that is easy to do and accessible to everyone. Running is a great strategy to help improve cardiovascular fitness because it increases aerobic fitness and helps to burn calories.There are also numerous psychological benefits for runners.

According to a study in The American College of Sports Medicine Position Statement on Exercise,

"The more you do it, or the harder, the more benefits you get."

Some of the common benefits are:

  • Running and other aerobic workouts significantly lower the chances of illness.
  • Running strengthens brain cells in such a way that they become more resilient to stress.
  • Young people benefit from running since it improves their mood and ability to focus.
  • A 30-minute exercise can alleviate depression.
  • Running is beneficial to knee health.
  • Running can help you get a good night's sleep.
  • Running helps to regulate blood sugar levels and reduces the risk of diabetes.

There are two types of people in this world, early birds or night owls. Some people prefer running in the morning and some people like going for evening runs.

According to the National Runner Survey from the USA, in 2017, reports stated that,

"People who log their miles in the morning count 25% and the early evening hours are preferred by 39%. The remaining people live to run during the day or late at night."

2. Morning Runs

Apart from the possibility of capturing a beautiful sunrise, running in the morning is an excellent way to improve your mood. As your stress hormones are highest in the morning, running can help in reducing your stress levels, allowing you to feel more cheerful as you do your daily activities.

There is also a low chance of something getting in your way of exercise if you go for a run early in the morning. Whether you have to stay late at work or a friend asks you for dinner, your run will not be influenced in any way. Also, the streets are generally quieter in the morning. Many morning runners enjoy the peace and solitude that comes with running in the early hours of the day. As a result, running first thing in the morning is an excellent approach to increasing muscle mass. You can also get in a good workout in the morning if you're planning to do some strength training as part of your weekly routine.

3. Evening Runs

Running in the early evening can help you improve your balance and strengthen muscles, which can help you lower your blood pressure at night.

According to science,

"The greatest time to go for a run is in the late afternoon or early evening."

Long-distance runs are best done in the late afternoon, sprints are best done in the early evening. Running in the early evening or later in the afternoon is the best times to train, whether you're a sportsman or someone who wants to run for longer periods of time. You are in the best shape during those times of the day.

To supply your muscles with the necessary nutrients and oxygen, the blood vessels dilate when the body's core temperature increases. Increased vigilance is also a result of the increased speed of nerve impulses, which improves the breakdown of glycogen and glucose. This not only makes running more enjoyable, but also reduces the risk of injury.

Both morning and evening runs have their own pros and cons. Let's take a look:

4. Pros and Cons

4.1. Morning Runs - Pros

  • If you want to lose weight, go for a morning run. Running on an empty stomach helps you lose weight quickly.
  • Testosterone, the muscle-building hormone, rises between 5 to 8 a.m. So if you want to grow muscles, go for morning runs.
  • Your blood pressure stays balanced during the day.
  • Running in the morning can prevent depression by releasing endorphins, which are mood lifting hormones and have a stronger effect in the morning.
  • Improves your productivity for the day.
  • When you run first thing in the morning, your body absorbs more oxygen. This means that all of your muscles, tissues, and cells will be well-nourished. It also jumpstarts your metabolism, culminating in more energy throughout the day.
  • Running in the morning helps you to stay consistent without postponing your essential workout.

4.2. Morning Runs - Cons

  • You may not get enough sleep.
  • Your muscles are tense and inflexible in the morning. That is why you should always warm up before starting your run.
  • You may feel restless for the rest of your day.
  • High risk of injury or stroke.

4.3. Evening Runs - Pros

  • Your testosterone and cortisol levels are optimal in the evening, allowing you to get the most out of your weight-lifting exercises.
  • Evening runs can be used in conjunction with resistance training to improve your balance, flexibility and core strength.
  • You'll have consumed enough water and two to three meals to be adequately "fueled", providing you the stamina to perform more intensive activities.
  • Evening runs can be beneficial for releasing stress after a tough day.
  • You can run for longer periods of time in the evening since you have more energy and maximum lung capacity to endure longer runs.
  • Reduces risk of injury.

4.4. Evening Runs - Cons

  • You may be exhausted after a long day at work.
  • It may cause digestive problems.
  • Evening runs may not suit your work hours.
  • Environmental factors like traffic, lighting, etc.

5. Conclusion

Remember that your body is different from everybody else's. Before you decide whether to run in the morning or in the evening, focus on when you feel more active or tired. Whether you want to lose weight, maintain your current weight, improve your overall health, consistency is essential. Choose the ideal time and training schedule that works best for you, prepare ahead of time, and stick to it.

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