Can I Train Late at Night?

I recently spent one full year consistently training after 8 PM, and one full year consistently training before 8 AM.

The answer to the question of whether or not I can train late at night is, ‘yes’.

To be clear, I mean train successfully, which I will define as:

  • With clear gains to strength & health
  • With enough rest and without injury

But what about you?

CAN YOU SET & STICK TO CLEAR BOUNDARIES?

I am an early riser. I made the change to late-night training because of my work schedule.

Here’s was the plan:

  • Get up early (5:30-6:30) and head into work.
  • Work late, hopefully have dinner with family, put kids to bed (8 PM).
  • Workout as close to 8:01 as possible.
  • Get to bed by 10 or 11.

Here was the reality:

  • Get up early (5:30-6:30) and head into work.
  • Work late, hopefully have dinner with family, put kids to bed (8-8:30 PM).
  • Spend some time with my wife;
  • Have some other chores to do;
  • Have some more work to do;
  • Workout at 9 PM, sometimes even 10 PM, and very rarely even start as late at 10:30 PM.
  • Eat food, and be tired, but sometimes not so tired, perhaps even watch TV.
  • Get to bed by 11, 12, or 1 AM.

I would sleep a little bit later on the late nights if possible.

So, you can see that the planned boundaries quickly dissolved.

I’m not very good with boundaries.

If you’re not either, pause before proceeding.

If you can start on time, every time, you’re in good shape.

WILL THEY BE ‘QUALITY’ WORKOUTS?

I’ll tell you this: the workouts that started at 9:30 or 10 PM, after a long day of work, were still damned good workouts.

I was breaking PR’s consistently during that time.

But, worrying about when I would get to start, that added a lot of stress.

And, as you can see, it did sometimes reduce sleep to unhealthy levels.

So the overall quality of your late-night program will strongly rest on how diligently you can stick to your ‘start time’.

THE BODY CAN ADAPT TO ANYTHING

Men and women have survived far worse stresses on the body than adjusting their workout schedules to accommodate the other facets of their life.

We’ve been through concentration camps, Navy Seal training, and, famine.

So, if you’re missing your exercise because you can’t in the morning, there is still the night.

***

“Strength + Health = Vitality.” – Coach Matt

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