Training is a battle.
A war against your own physical and mental limitations.
Your biggest enemy? The amount of excuses you can come up with.
This battle isn’t one for the weak. The naïve. The impatient.
You’ll need to embrace the pain of being a beginner again. New challenges. New routines. New soreness.
But none of those things matter if you don’t train at all.
So before you go further down the rabbit hole of calisthenics training, you better make sure you know what the best time is to do so.
Knowing how your body responds to the time at which you train, is something you must learn.
The battlefield is right in front of you and you have the opportunity to write the heroes’ story.
So when you enter the calisthenics arena, arm yourself with this knowledge.
And keep fighting the good fight.
Everybody is counting on you.
The Biological Clock You Don’t Know About
Do you have a friend that wakes up in the morning and is always ready to go?
Perhaps you are that friend to someone else.
The point is:
“We aren’t all the same, but we live in a body that functions a certain way.”
If you want to master it, you need to know how it works.
So you can adapt your training to your needs and get more out of it in the process.
You might have never thought about it consciously.
But there is an entire science behind ‘the best time to train’.
Because your body has an internal biological clock that is ticking the entire day.
While you are awake reading this, but also while you are sleeping.
It is called the circadian rhythm.
This internal clock can have a BIG influence on how hard you can train and on what kind of benefits you can get out of your training in general.
Want to know how you can use it to your advantage?
Tick along with me!
What Is Your Circadian Rhythm?
In layman’s terms, it’s the ‘daily cycle of your biological activity’.
The most basic being the sleep-wake cycle.
Your body has an internal biological clock.
This clock regulates when to activate what systems.
When you are asleep for example, your body wouldn’t benefit from extra energy to keep you awake.
So your body secretes ‘certain’ hormones that will allow you to fall asleep.
The rhythm in the figure is based upon an average lifestyle.
Where someone wakes at about 7:30 and goes to bed at 22:30.
It’s to give you a general idea of the bodily processes.
In the picture you can clearly see at what time which specific attributes in your body are at their maximum potential.
So how does this relate to your training?
How Your Can Hack Your Circadian Rhythm For Better Results
For athletes or people like you there are a few important factors: core temperature, hormonal secretion and metabolism.
The temperature of your body correlates with nerve conduction, joint mobility and glucose metabolism in addition to blood flow (1).
This allows for a better overall muscular activation.
But how can you use this to your benefit?
When we take a look at research surrounding core temperature, you can see a clear rise after waking up, followed by a steep decline once asleep (2).
For more strength, train at times where your core temperature is high.
Despite the importance of the ‘core temperature’ the regularity of training also seems to play a big role.
If you train more often in the morning, you will become better at training in the morning (6).
Simply put, while you might have a bigger potential for peak performance later on the day, this potential can also be increased earlier on the day by consistently training at that time.
Your body adapts.
If we look at the hormonal differences you might make a different choice.
Training in the morning might have bigger benefits for fat loss, specifically when still in a fastened state.
This study for example shows that while the energy expenditure during exercise was the same, more fat was burned while doing so in a fastened state as shown in the black circles (34% of energy) versus a fed state as shown in the white circles (19% of energy) (7).
So what does this mean for your optimal training time?
- From a performance perspective, training later on the day between 14:00-20:30 might be the best option due to a higher core temperature which creates a wide range of benefits.
- If you are more into burning fat you might want to consider working out in the morning in a fastened state, but you need to make sure you reserve an adequate amount of time to warm up your body.
BUT none of this matters if you don’t apply the rule of consistency.
Whatever time you ‘use to consistently’ train at, you will eventually become better at.
So this could be either in the morning or later on the day, depending on what you want your body adapts to.
So don’t quit training if you cannot train at your optimal training time.
It just means you have more excuses than a pregnant nun.
Because you are never going to get any better if you don’t train at all.
Clearly there are a 1001 factors when it comes to optimal training time, but this can be a useful tool to get that edge on yourself and to use your ‘biological clock as an extra hack to your advantage’.
A Quick Infographic On Optimal Training Time
Use The Circadian Rhythm To Your Advantage
The battle against human limitations isn’t easy.
But even scarier, imagine spending your live without ever fighting a battle for a good cause at all.
You’ll never truly know what that ‘cause’ could have brought you. Not even close.
You’ll spend your life looking at things outside of the only body you have.
While never discovering how it works from the inside.
It’s ok to feel like quitting or not training sometimes. Everybody has those moments.
But if you decide you want to achieve your goals, you can’t let that emotion stop you.
Not while you still have time left.
Master you time and body, second by second, they can be your brothers in arms. Together you will fight the good fight.
You just need to find the right rhythm.
Beast mode ON!
Now I’d like to hear from you:
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Or maybe you have a question.
Either way, leave a quick comment below right now.