So I've been trying to force myself to get out for runs early in the morning as this is the best time for me given work and family commitments.
I'm definitely not a morning person and find this a real struggle....not so much the motivation to get out it's more that once I am out, I have zero energy and feel slow and weak.
Example I was up at 5:30 on Saturday and started up Skiddaw around 6:30. Felt rubbish for a good hour then around 7:30 felt myself starting to properly wake up and enjoy myself. By this time most of the run was over. I'd been awake for 2 hours, had a coffee and a light breakfast when I got up but still felt cr@p until 7:30.
I've persevered getting up early for a while to try and reset my body clock but it doesn't seem to help much.
Do I just need to accept that early runs are a struggle for me or is there anything I can do to help?
I would guess there's a large part that is just how your body functions. Early morning runs are the best for me, I'm a morning person. When I run later in the day I'm more sluggish. I do find that the fitter I get, the better my body copes with running at any time, but there is still a difference.
Maybe someone will have a strategy, but maybe you just have to accept that morning runs might not be your best ones (doesn't mean they aren't worth doing!)
I now run most mornings at 6:00 am, I get up at 5:45 and have a coffee, a crap and run.. If I'm going for longer than 4-5 miles I'll grab a slice of honey on toast to kick up the blood sugars a bit.
If it was a race or longer or hard run I get up and have 2 slices of toast and a coffee two hours before I start running and I'm fine. I now love early morning runs.
Maybe it's just practice then. You seem to be doing all the right things, grab a shower too.
I'm the same. Much better in the evening.
I was never a morning person. Life before 8am didn't exist and that was waking up at 8 to start work at 9. I had to change though, increasing volumes of traffic were making it impossible to get anywhere on time. I did a year of getting up at 7am then swapped it to 6am. I found early nights were the key. These days I love mornings, when working I'm typically up at 6 and on holiday I normally wake up at 5
> I'm the same. Much better in the evening.
I certainly think most people workout better in the evenings.
Very few people can do intervals very well early in the morning
Keep doing it. It gets easier with time. It feels great when you run later then... Like you are flying..
Like you I used to hate morning runs, and felt really awful afterwards.
However, when doing marathon training a few years ago it was the only time I could fit weekday runs in, and after a while I found it became much easier, and then enjoyable. I think the body just adapts after a while. Also its really nice to watch the sunrise while running and feel like you've achieved something.
I've not done much morning running recently (or much running at all!), but still like a morning run.
There’s a raft of scientific evidence to support this. Around 4-5pm is the best time for everyone.
Getting up in the morning and running is pretty bad for you by all accounts.
Who's accounts are those then??? Bad for you!?
I don't need any scientific evidence. My body has convinced me.. But thanks.
Ok. Well it depends what you’re doing and what your aim is. Your blood pressure will be higher in the morning and you are more prone to injury.
The study only looked at men. So it may be the case for half the population, maybe not for the other half!
I am more motivated in the morning, so if nothing else I will gain more from running then as I am more likely to run then and to run further.
Well, it’s just one study. Plenty of others. If you’re getting out and about then that’s all good.
Very few studies on women, as hormones vary a lot and that's complicated to adjust for. So they just don't do it!
I'm actually going to run early afternoon today as humidity is lower, but by evening if I haven't already been running it is unlikely that I will. Definitely a morning person!
I am another evening runner. I am barely functional before 10am. Thankfully, I work with a lot of people in the US, so coming into work at 10 and leaving at 6.30 actually works better for me than 9-5 anyway. Don't particularly enjoy alpine starts either, but I see those as a necessary evil whereas I can choose to run in the evenings.
I never mastered early morning running, I did try but it simply did not work for my body. Not sure why but some people function fine early morning, but not me.
I don't mind it now, but 3-4 miles at 8:00 pace is OK, but I meet a friend who is much quicker and we run about 8 miles at 6:40/6:50 pace every so often and that hurts a lot, where as that sort of run at 5pm would be a comfortably hard run. In the summer I'll literally vomit after running 8-9 miles at a quick pace at 6 am.
The best time to run is the time when you can fit it in. I'm sure you'll get used to it to a degree. I've mostly got out of the habit but when I was training for long stuff I'd get up early, have a coffee and a bit of toast and go. Both days this weekend I tried to do the same ...and fannied about on my iPad for an hour. More a failure of will than circadian rhythm
PS Good effort getting most of the way up and down Skiddaw in an hour!
PPS I'm not sure that paper above tells us very much, unless I'm missing something?
> The best time to run is the time when you can fit it in.
...and when you feel like it. Yes you can force yourself out of the door on the odd occasion but if it becomes the norm the whole thing can become a chore which you'll lose interest in.
I think your blood is thicker in the morning. That might be related to sex but intuitively I’m not sure how it would be. My heart rate is always 10-15 bpm higher when I cycle in the mornings.
> ...and when you feel like it. Yes you can force yourself out of the door on the odd occasion but if it becomes the norm the whole thing can become a chore which you'll lose interest in.
Yeah I woke up at 5:45 to run today and it just wasn't happening.. It's a balance between not neshing out too much but knowing when you don't have time, really don't want to or do need sleep.
Generally once I set off I never regret a run.
I’m definitely not the only one then!
I’ll persevere and see if it gets easier with time.....hopefully before winter sets in and I start finding (more) excuses not to go out.
I would guess circadian rhythms probably have more to do with it than sex, but hormones can do all sorts of fun games too.
My heart rate doesn't seem to vary with time of day during exercise, but whenever I run my heart rate stays higher after it until I sleep, so if I run early then it stays high all day whereas later runs mean my heart rate is only high for a few hours
I know people, male and female, who do all their running at 5-6 am. I think its rhythm, how are bodies need energy etc. So many variables.
More bang for your buck!
I find the same as the OP.
Total sleep may be an issue ... if you’re not getting the same hours kip due to the early start then that’s an extra burden. Try dropping all caffeine post lunch to help with sleep.
What worked for me - a bit - was to accept much slower paces in the morning, and run to perceived effort level. The GPS watch can be demoralising in this respect, I try not to look at it! I always did speedwork at lunchtimes.
The other thing I find helps sometimes is to stop after a km or two and stretch out the legs for 5-10 mins. Restarting then feels a lot easier, both cardiovascularly and from a creaky legs perspective.
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