Choose an Exercise Time that fits

December 25, 2015

What is the best time to exercise? A better question is, “What is the best time for me to exercise?” Talk to your healthcare provider about what may be right for you.

The key to getting the health benefits of exercise is to exercise regularly. So choose a time that will fit into your day. Make it a habit. Most adults only need 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week of aerobic exercise to help improve heart, bone, and muscle health. Walking fast, bike riding, tennis, basketball, pushing a lawn mower, swimming, jogging, and running are some of the many ways to exercise and get health benefits. Choose what you like to do.

If you have a busy schedule, you can break up your exercise time into three 10-minute sessions during the day. Exercise at least at a moderate intensity level. When you exercise at this level, you can talk, but you can’t sing!

To find your best times to exercise:

Think about your morning

Do I have more energy in the morning?

Can I get up 10 minutes earlier to exercise? Maybe before breakfast?

Does it take me 10 minutes to walk briskly to work, the bus, or train?


Think about your day

Do I have more energy during the day?

Do I have 10 minutes before or during lunch to take a brisk walk? Maybe walk with a friend or colleague?

Do I have 10 minutes in the afternoon to exercise or take a brisk walk to refresh me?

Does it take me 10 minutes to walk home from work, the bus, or train?


Think about your evening

Do I have 10 minutes before or after dinner to exercise or take a brisk walk?

Will my spouse, friend, or child walk with me?

Does exercise a few hours before bedtime help me sleep better?



If you walk a dog, take 10 extra minutes and walk faster.

If you exercise at a vigorous intensity instead of moderate, you can cut your total weekly exercise time almost in half. When you exercise vigorously, you probably won’t be able to say more than a few words without stopping to take a breath! Exercise for at least 10 minutes at a time

Exercise at different times of the day to find the times that work best for you:

  • Which is most fun?
  • Which makes you feel best afterward?
  • Which is easiest to stick with?


Take action

Write your best times on your calendar for the next few weeks. Try to stick with your plan.

Adjust your times as you learn which work best for you.


Talk with your healthcare provider before you begin an exercise program.

This material was developed by GSK.