When Is The Best Time To Do Cardio And How Often Should You Do It?

Sarah Ohm

Sarah is an avid fitness & health enthusiast; as a spin instructor, she spends a lot of her downtime inside the gym or being active outdoors.

She is in love with all dogs, loves to read and is obsessed with good coffee.

She believes the key to living a healthy life is having balance, so she will also indulge in a glass of wine every now and then!

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Cardio – it’s a hot topic of debate for a lot of people.

Wwhen should you do it, what type should you do and how often should you do it are all questions that people have every single day.

The good news is that it’s not as hard to figure out as you may think and whether you love working out in the morning or after work, there are pros and cons to doing your cardio at either of those times.

Let’s look at the benefits of both times!

Pros To A Morning Workout

The main reason why some people frequent the gym at 6 am (or before!) is so they ensure the workout is done for the day, no matter what the rest of their day will throw at them.

In terms of cardio, getting in a morning run or a brisk walk can help suppress your appetite, which can also help with weight loss in the long run.

Getting into the habit of training in the morning is also extremely helpful if you’re training for a specific race or event because they most often take place in the mornings, so you’ll already be used to it!

Pros To An Evening Workout

An evening cardio session might feel more comfortable for you than working out in the morning.

You’ve had all day to top up the glycogen stores in your muscles and feeding yourself with healthy, energizing foods so you’ll feel ready to tackle the treadmill hard after work.

Doing cardio in the evening has been shown to help aid with sleep, contrary to what people have been told in the past!

If your style of cardio is in the form of a high-intensity interval workout, it’s absolutely better to keep it until later on in the day due to the fact that your body will be much more fueled than in the morning.

How Often Should You Do Cardio?

No matter what your fitness goal is, cardiovascular fitness should definitely be a part of it.

The American College of Sports Medicine suggests that people need at least 150 minutes of cardio per week, which comes out to be 30 or more minutes of cardio, 5-days per week.

How often you do your cardio depends on the types of goals that you have.

If you’re looking to gain muscle mass, keeping your cardio on the lower end of the spectrum is ideal.

If you’re looking to shed weight, then you’ll want to aim for about an hour of high-intense exercise daily.

If you have a specific goal in mind like a 10km race, you’ll find that you need to go running around four days per week depending on the running schedule that you’re following.

Cardio really comes down to your personal preference!

In our opinion, cardio is best done at the time that works best for you.

You won’t be able to stick to a consistent gym schedule if you’re always struggling to get to the gym at a set time, so fit the gym into your life like you would any other meeting!

If you’re really not a morning person, then opt for an after-work spin class.

If you find that you’re frequently out socializing after work, an early morning or lunchtime workout may work best for you long term.

Be honest with yourself and what you can manage, and you’ll set yourself up for long-term success! 

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