Fitness trainer Or German presents a short workout for a flat stomach (Photo: Or German)
Everyone has their own schedule: some people start the day with a workout, while others actually end it that way (some don't workout at all of course, and they are our particular favorites). Now a new study has found that people who visit the gym in the morning burn more fat from those who visit in the evening.
Using an experiment involving mice, the researchers from the Karolinska Institute, one of the largest medical research institutes in Europe, found that the animals have a higher metabolism if they exercise earlier in the day. The researchers add that this is also the case in humans. Biological processes work differently
accordingly per hour of the day, due to each cell's circadian rhythm—the system that regulates the 24-hour sleep-wake cycle. The researchers set out to find out how these cycles affect our training. They put mice through high-intensity exercise at two points in the day, and examined their fat tissue afterwards .
Should I start in the morning?
Depends on what you're looking for (Photo: ShutterStock)
The researchers marked an early active phase and an early resting phase, which corresponds to late morning and late evening fitness training in humans.
They looked at which genes were active in adipose tissue, also known as body fat, and found that those involved in increasing metabolism were more abundant in the morning slot - regardless of the amount of food eaten.
Morning workout genes break down fat by producing heat and mitochondria in adipose tissue.
"Our results suggest that late-morning exercise may be more effective than late-evening exercise in terms of increasing metabolism and burning fat, and if this is the case, it may be valuable for overweight individuals," said the researchers from the Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery and the Department of physiology and pharmacology at the Karolinska Institute.
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"It seems that the right timing is important for the body's energy balance and improving the health benefits of physical activity, but more studies are needed to draw reliable conclusions about the relevance of our findings to humans," the researchers conclude.
Mice have been a long-standing model for human physiology and metabolism.
However, the researchers say their comparison, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, is limited by the fact that mice are nocturnal creatures.
So what time should you start training?
A study published a year ago in Frontiers in Physiology claims that the time of training and its effectiveness depend greatly on your gender.
According to the study, women burn more fat during morning exercise, while men burn more fat at night.
In addition, women who aim to improve blood pressure also achieve better results by exercising in the morning, the study says.
Another study from the Faculty of Nutrition and Movement Studies at Maastricht University Medical Center in the Netherlands found in 2021 that training at different times of the day has different benefits and that your training schedule should take into account what you want to get out of your training.