Early Morning Running.
I don’t know about you but waking up at the crack of dawn to go to work or go running or start my day is not my ideal situation.
But seeing as I work in a bakery and have to be at work at 6 am, it’s not always a possibility to sleep in.
This morning my running buddy Sarah and I decided to go for a run at 6:30.
In the morning. On my day off. Which is great and fine and dandy because then it’s out of the way for the rest of the day and you’ve already gotten in a workout. But, still.
Oh look, no cars. Just me. On the road.
No bueno. We parked at the local park and stretched, put on our lights and hit the road.
I like to plan/map out our runs and decided to take a busy street down to the beach road and turn around. It was already hot and humid out when we started and as we went on, it literally just got worse.
It was muggy and my ankle was having no part in running this morning. But, as we went along, we got to catch up and have our “girl talk”.
We hit Walsingham bridge and we turned around and saw this beautiful sunrise.
We continued on our merry way and turned around right past the bridge and headed back. It turned out to be a really nice morning (I think it was because I was sweating so much, I got colder).
But on our way back, we walked up towards his produce shop and I said to her, “Is that a watermelon?” Sure enough.
Anywho, we made it back to our cars, said our farewells and parted ways.
But the more I thought about it, the more I realized there are plenty of people out there just like me who are runners but don’t do mornings.
Usually I prefer to run late afternooons, but they say there’s a plethora of benefits for running in the morning.
“But” you say, “there is just so many things to do in the morning.”
Well, according to Runner’s World, here is a common early morning stressors and how to overcome it.
Morning Roadblock: YOU’RE SLEEPY
“The predawn hours are challenging because body temperature and heart rate dip to their lowest point at this time,” Moffitt says. “In the presence of light, body temperature and heart-rate increase, which makes it easier to be active.” The carbohydrates in your last meal play a role, too. If you skipped dinner or ate fast-digesting carbs like rice, bread, or sugary desserts, your glycogen levels will be depleted, making it even harder to muster the energy to get up.
Prep for an early-morning run the night before. Eat slow-digesting carbs like broccoli, beans, and lentils. Set your automatic coffeemaker to brew before you wake. “Caffeine can help stimulate your arousal system and get you ready to run,” Moffitt says. Shut-eye is important, too. If you’re constantly waking up feeling exhausted, it’s a sign you aren’t getting enough z’s. Turn off the computer and TV at least 30 minutes before you hit the sack and get blackout shades for your windows—the absence of light boosts production of melatonin, a hormone that makes you feel sleep.”
Adjust Your Running Clock
How to get over three common tricky timing issues
Are you usually a morning runner, but winter’s dark mornings have you hibernating?
Instead of getting dressed half-asleep by the dim glow of a nightlight, put on your running clothes in a brightly lit room. When light hits your eyes, it signals your pineal gland to stop producing melatonin, a hormone that makes you feel sleepy. Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) work best because they closely mimic natural sunlight.
Are you usually an evening runner, but your key race is in the morning?
Run at the time of your race once a week. Train your intestinal tract by rehearsing what you’ll eat. Eat your normal breakfast (about 500 calories) four hours before your race time, then snack on a banana or energy bar an hour before you head out. If prerace jitters make you too nervous to eat the morning of a big event, practice eating breakfast the night before.
Are you usually an evening runner, but have to run in the morning because of schedule conflicts (or vice versa)?
Give the transition at least two weeks and don’t be surprised if you don’t feel or run your best for a little while. It takes a couple of weeks to fully adjust to a time change. Switching your workout routine may make you feel like you’re recovering from jet lag on a run. But your body will adapt to the new schedule.
Until next time!