The new study revealed that 30 minutes of high-intensity exercise in the evening will not have an adverse effect on the sleep but helps in losing the appetite.
The research was published in the Experimental Physiology on 23 February 2019.
The experiment was conducted by the researchers of Charles Sturt University in Australia. They hired eleven middle-aged men who went through an experimental trial to investigate sleep and appetite. They performed the exercise in the morning between 6-7am, in the afternoon between 2-4pm and in the evening between 7-9pm.
For this experiment, the participants were asked to perform high-intensity cycling which included six maximum intensity sprints of one-minute with a four-minute interval. The blood samples were taken post and pre-workout to examine the appetite-related hormones, and a series of tests were also taken during the sleep to know the sleep stages.
Consequently, the results showed that evening exercise did not have any negative impact on later sleep. However, the high-intensity exercise done in the afternoon and in the evening effectively helps in reduction of the hunger-stimulating hormone, called ghrelin.
The observation suggested that only high-intensity exercise early in the evening have a meaningful impact and a single bout of exercise do not link with the loss of appetite.
Penelope Larsen, the lead study author, said, “In the future, we hope to conduct similar studies recruiting women, to determine whether sleep and appetite responses may be different depending on sex.”
Larsen also added, “This study only considered a single bout of exercise; therefore, it would be beneficial to investigate long-term sleep and appetite adaptations to high-intensity exercise training performed either in the morning, afternoon or evening.”
This study has been done on a limited number of people. Further studies need to be done on other age groups, also considering the sex of the person.
The final output of the studies also showed that the participants have performed better during the later time of the day as compared to the morning time of the workout. Therefore, the time-of-day may also influence the training schedules.