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Reasons to Exercise in the Afternoon

A Handful of Reasons to Exercise in the Afternoon

You're not a morning person — you barely have enough energy to brush your teeth let alone muster up the pep it takes to hit the gym. No problem. There are plenty of other opportunities during the day to work out, and here are five reasons to make it happen at noon.

  1. Everyone else is doing it: If procrastination is your middle name, it's easy to say you're going to work out, but then find a million reasons to put it off until it's 6 p.m. when you're too starved to even think about exercise. Around lunch is a popular time to sweat it out — you'll probably even notice a few of your co-workers slipping out of the office and heading out with gym bag in hand. Getting inspired by joining the pack at the same time every day is one way to make sure you don't skip out on your workout, and once you do it for a few weeks, it'll become a habit.
  2. Reduced risk of injury: Since your body has been awake for several hours, it's had more time to move around and get the blood flowing. Heading into a noon workout means your mind is more alert, which can prevent injuries caused by morning grogginess (like falls or forgetting to use equipment properly). A warmed-up body is also less tense and more flexible, lowering your risk of a pulled muscle. As an added bonus, when your body feels more open, you're more likely to work out harder and longer.
  3. Saves calories, burns calories: If you have plans to meet a friend for a noon yoga class, you know you can't down an enormous meal beforehand without feeling gassy and sluggish, so that's one way a noon workout saves calories. Plus you'll burn 300 or more calories on the hour-long workout, and since brisk exercise has been shown to suppress your appetite you'll feel inspired to eat something light and healthy for lunch afterward (instead of blowing all your hard work on a 1,400-calorie burger and fries). That midday workout can also give you energy later on in the day, avoiding the need for a high-calorie late afternoon pick-me-up.

Keep reading for two more reasons to exercise at lunchtime.

  1. Ahh, the sun: Dragging yourself out of bed into the dark wee hours of the morning to sweat it out before work can seem downright torturous. But at noon, the beautiful sun is shining so bright, you'll naturally be drawn outside; you'll even look forward to it with way more energy. And exercising outdoors is one way to get your daily dose of vitamin D.
  2. Much-needed break: If you're one of the many who sits at a desk all day, that lunchtime workout gives your eyes, your brain, and your body a much-needed break from your sedentary 9 to 5. An hour off to recharge can reduce stress, prevent depression, and make you better at your job.
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