As a certified San Diego fitness trainer I am always reading books and articles about the body, exercise, nutrition and so forth. Currently, I am reading a fascinating book called The Body Clock, Guide to Better Health by Michael Smolensky PH.D and Lynne Lamberg. It discusses our body’s natural clock and how there are better times of day to complete certain tasks compared to others. One section of the book in particular discusses exercise in relation to times of day. When it your body, there are better times to compete and train for specific activities.
According to the book this is a brief outline of the best times for various activities:
6am-9am. Eat a healthy breakfast. This is most important for people trying to maintain a lean weight like boxers, gymnasts, jockeys, and those seeking to lose weight since your body is more likely to burn food immediately that is eaten in the morning and more likely to store food eaten in the evening.
11am. Ability to withstand muscle aches peak around this time. Endurance athletes will find that they perform best during this time, since your body will be able to withstand muscle fatigue easier.
2pm-3pm. Post Lunch Food Coma. People whom exercise at this time move slower and display less stamina. Early morning exercisers will feel sleepy now. Best option is a moderate short brisk walk to bring back alertness in the middle of the day.
3pm-5pm. Breathing is easiest. Airways are most open and make cardiovascular activities much easier.
5pm-9pm. Strength gains. Research shows that study participants who trained in the evening had 20% greater strength gains compared to their morning counterparts. Also hand-eye coordination is at it’s peak during this time.
6pm-8pm. Body Temperature is at it’s highest. Muscles are the most flexible and reflexes the fastest. This time is best for sports that require speed and all-out power such as sprinting, swimming, and speed skating. This is also a great time for sports that require exact timing and precise muscle control such as figure skating or gymnastics.
I always found for myself that there were better times of day that I performed some activities better than others. I’m glad to see there is research to prove that. Test it out for yourself and see if there are times in which your body does perform better than others, you might be surprised.