The Pros & Cons Of Working Out Twice A Day

We explore whether doubling your workouts will help you reach your goals faster or have you headed straight for burnout.

Amy Cooper headshot
Amy Cooper

July 10, 2024 - Updated July 10, 2024

Working out twice a day

From how often you should be training to how long your Sweat sessions should be, we know that when it comes to your workout routine, more isn’t always better. And while it might feel like upping your training schedule or ticking off more than one session a day will help you achieve your fitness goals a whole lot faster, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. The risks of overtraining are real, and workout burnout is definitely something you want to avoid. 

But first things first: let’s make sure you want to work out more for the right reasons. If your desire to up your training is rooted in a feeling of obligation, social pressure or a need to punish your body, let’s rewrite that narrative. While feelings like stress and frustration can be incredible motivators to let off some steam at the gym, your drive to exercise should generally come from a healthy, feel-good place. 

Reclaiming how you feel about exercise and your body while rewriting a toxic narrative is a personal journey, but one our trainer Kelsey Wells has been on herself. In fact, Kelsey designed a whole program - Redefine Fitness: Strength & Mindfulness - to support women in building a positive intent and appreciation for their bodies while also getting physically stronger. 

“Choosing to reclaim movement has been such a powerful thing,” Kelsey shared when Redefine Fitness first launched. “When I began to move my body from a positive place and with positive intent, it impacted every part of my life. I had more confidence, and not from being stronger or fitter or looking a certain way, but from building trust with myself, respecting myself and realising what I’m capable of.” 

So is working out twice a day inherently bad for you? As you might have guessed, the answer isn’t always black and white. We break down the pros and cons of training twice a day.


Pro: It’s a great option if you don’t have one solid chunk of time 

Short workouts can be just as effective as a longer session, and there are plenty of quick workouts in the On Demand section of the Sweat app. If your chosen Sweat program workouts are nudging the 50-minute mark but you’ve only got half an hour to spare, why not break your workout up into two more manageable blocks? There are plenty of benefits to be had with shorter sessions for your health, motivation, energy levels, fitness and overall routine. 

Pro: You can mix up your training styles 

If you are looking to include more exercise in your daily life, make sure you consider the intensity and training style of each workout and make mixing up your training styles a top priority. For example, we would never recommend two strenuous high-intensity sessions in one day (nobody needs that many burpees, no matter how many muscles they work) but you could alternate a morning HIIT workout or weights session with some low-intensity steady state cardio such as walking or cycling in the evening. Just make sure that rest and recovery are still a top priority. 

Pro: You can add more movement into your day

A fitness hack we love here at Sweat is the exercise snack trend, where you spread short bursts of movement throughout the day to get your body moving more regularly - particularly helpful if you work a desk job or don’t get to spend a lot of time on your feet throughout the day. An exercise snack isn’t usually a structured workout (although we have plenty of On Demand options that are 15 minutes or less in the Sweat app if that’s your jam) - think things like getting off the bus a stop earlier to get more steps in, walking during calls, or taking the stairs or a quick burst of movement in your lounge or office. Given just how powerful a one-minute workout can be, this is a trend we don’t see going anywhere soon. 

Pro: It can help your routine work for you 

A workout routine non-negotiable we have? It has to work for you. From shift workers to mothers to students to those working multiple jobs, jam-packed schedules don’t always lend themselves to full-length workouts. Perhaps that means a 15-minute power walk in the morning and a longer gym sesh in the evening. Or maybe your alarm clock is set super early so you can smash your workout and still have time to run around with the kids after school.  Create a schedule that works with you, not against you.

Planning a second workout by way of a backup plan is also a great way to make sure you get in at least one of your sessions. This is something our Head Trainer Kayla Itsines often does. Take a sneak peek at her diary and you’ll often find two workouts on the one day, but here’s the thing: she never plans on completing both of them. She just makes sure she has the time blocked out so she knows that if she needs to cancel one, she’s got a second time slot up her sleeve. 

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Con: You might end up burning out

From decreased performance and progress to constant tiredness and changes to your menstrual cycle, burning yourself out with your training is definitely something you want to avoid - and something that exercising twice a day puts you at greater risk of. Take a look through these nine common signs of overtraining and burnout and make sure you’re regularly checking in with how you’re feeling. If you’ve noticed any of these, it might be time to reduce the cadence or intensity of your workouts.

Con: It could negatively impact your mental health  

We’ve already spoken about the importance of moving your body to support it rather than punish it, and it’s worth touching on the concept of compulsive exercise. Compulsive exercise is widely recognised as a symptom that often presents in people with eating disorders, and other research has put forth that compulsive exercise should also be understood as its own distinct condition. One study that explored the relationship between compulsive exercise, mental health and psychosocial wellbeing in both athletes and recreational exercisers within Australia found, after adjusting for eating disorder symptoms and sporting levels, compulsive exercise was associated with increased risk of anxiety, depression and stress. If you believe your relationship with exercise is unhealthy or contributing to poor mental health, we recommend you reach out to your healthcare provider for support.  

Con: You increase your risk of injury 

According to the American Council on Exercise, a chronic or nagging injury is often a sign of overtraining. This increased risk comes when you’re consistently putting your body under stress or not giving your body the time it needs to properly recover from your training load. 

Con: You might be missing out on the rest and recovery time your body needs

Your workout recovery shouldn’t be complicated, time-consuming or expensive, but it should always be a priority if you want to make progress and tick off your fitness goals. From stretching and foam rolling to drinking plenty of water and getting enough sleep, this is what our trainers recommend to keep them on their A-game. 

No matter how fit you are and how often you’re planning to train, you should always try and schedule at least one full rest day each week. You might even find you need more depending on factors such as your training style and intensity, where you are in your menstrual cycle, your fitness level, lifestyle stressors and whether you’re doing full-body or split workouts. Not sure where to start? Take a look at these 25 rest day and recovery goals.

Con: It might not be sustainable 

Whether you’re managing the demands of a busy job, a growing family, caring commitments or an active social life, it can be hard (and unsustainable) to fit one workout into your day - let alone two. And that’s okay. If you’re completing full-length workouts in your chosen Sweat program, you’ll never have multiple workouts scheduled per day and there’s a reason for it: workout structure, prioritising rest, variety and a well-rounded approach to fitness are just a few of the reasons we’ve helped millions of women around the world smash their health and fitness goals.

Work out anywhere, anytime with Sweat

Ready for your first workout?

One thing we talk about all the time here at Sweat is the importance of listening to your body. We want every woman in our community to be moving from a place of joy and prioritising rest when they need to. Building a sustainable, feel-good fitness routine will look different for everyone, and the Sweat app has more than 50 programs and over 13,000 workouts to help you to work out anywhere, anytime, on your terms. 

Amy Cooper headshot
Amy Cooper

Amy is a writer and editor at Sweat. She has over a decade of experience in women’s publishing and digital media and has previously worked across titles including Mamamia, Grazia and Cosmopolitan.

Fitness Goals

* Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. The above information should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or medical condition. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet, sleep methods, daily activity, or fitness routine. Sweat assumes no responsibility for any personal injury or damage sustained by any recommendations, opinions, or advice given in this article.


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