If you want to start your day off on the right foot, a morning run is a great way to begin. Running in the morning has a lot of benefits for both your mind and body. But, if you want to get yourself in the habit of early morning running, you may be looking for some morning run tips. Let’s take a look at what every beginner should know about morning runs.
One of the best ways to get in the habit of morning running is to prepare the night before. With proper preparation, you’re less likely to skip your run. Always stretch and warm up before you go. Once you start, go at a slower pace and embrace your movements.
Why Should You Start Running In The Morning?
Early morning running has a lot of benefits. If you’ve been saving your runs for later in the day, you may want to consider changing your schedule. Before going over the early morning running tips, you may be wondering why you should start. Let’s quickly go over some of the main benefits of a morning run routine.
- You may feel an energy boost for the rest of your day. Many runners feel more alert and energetic when they go to work after a morning jog or run.
- Did you know that the time of day you exercise could affect your sleeping patterns? Studies show that early-morning runners are more likely to have a deep sleep at night. It’s a natural way to wake up every morning feeling refreshed.
- The temperature in the morning is cooler than the rest of the day. You can avoid daytime temperature highs and humidity.
- People that practice early morning running are more likely to practice self-care. By prioritizing your health and fitness first thing in the day, it will be easier for you to adopt habits that prioritize your needs. Studies show that people who prioritize self-care are better at managing stress.
6 Tips To Prepare For A Morning Run The Night Before
Do you want to know how to become a morning runner? If you’re generally not a morning person, it will be easier for you to blow off the run. Your biggest challenge may be to stop yourself from hitting snooze on your alarm and skipping your run for some extra sleep. If this sounds like you, then it’s a good idea to prepare the night before.
1. Get Your Clothing Ready
One easy but very effective morning run tip is to get your running clothes ready the night before. This tip is effective because people are less likely to cancel a plan if they have already prepared for it. Having your running outfit laid out and ready to go will keep your mind on the right track.
- Place your running outfit and shoes in plain sight. Make sure it’s somewhere you will see within your first few moments of waking up.
- Some runners sleep in their running clothes so they wake up prepared.
- Choose bright or reflective clothes, especially if the sun is still coming up.
2. Move Your Alarm Clock
Do you keep your alarm clock on your nightstand? You should move the clock to the other side of the room. Why is this? Well, if you have to get out of bed to turn off the alarm, then you’re less likely to get back into bed and blow off the run. You will already be out of bed and ready to start moving.
3. Evening Hydration
Running makes people sweat, which can lead to fluid loss. This is why it’s important to hydrate before, during, and after a run. What you might not have known is that you should start hydrating the night before as well. Ideally, you should aim to drink at least 16 ounces of water after you have eaten dinner. This way you won’t wake up feeling thirsty in the morning.
4. Go To Bed At The Right Time
To stay motivated for your morning runs, you’ll want to wake up feeling good. If you don’t get enough sleep at night, you’ll likely wake up feeling groggy. This is not the way you want to start your morning run. For that reason, always go to bed 7 to 8 hours before your alarm is set to go off.
5. Develop A Good Nightly Routine
Your nightly routine can impact your sleep. This is why it’s a good idea to develop smart habits before bed. It’s highly recommended to rest and unwind before going to bed. Do something that will rest your body and relax your mind, such as taking a bath or reading a book.
It’s a good idea to avoid screen time before bed as well. There have been studies connecting screen time to poor sleeping patterns. Ideally, you should turn off all electronics 30 minutes before going to bed.
6. No Caffeine or Alcohol After a Certain Time
Caffeine and alcohol are both known to disrupt people’s sleep. Now, you can still enjoy either of these in moderation. However, it’s important to stop drinking caffeine and alcohol after certain hours so they don’t affect your sleep.
- Caffeine should not be consumed within 7 to 8 hours prior to going to bed.
- Stop consuming alcohol 3 to 4 hours before going to bed.
What You Need To Do Before A Morning Run
Preparing for your run at night can help make it easier for you to get started in the morning. However, there are still things you will need to do once you wake up before you can go out. Let’s take a look at what to do before running in the morning.
1. Go To The Washroom
This may seem like a silly tip, but it’s necessary. Before you leave for the run, make sure you have fully relieved yourself. You don’t want to end up having the urge to relieve yourself while you’re mid-run.
If you’re a coffee person, it’s recommended to wait for your morning brew until after your run. Coffee is a diuretic and may cause you to need to use the toilet while running.
2. Fuel Up
It’s important to have something to eat at least 30 minutes before you go out on a run. This doesn’t have to be a full breakfast. A small snack will do the trick. You need to eat just enough to provide you with energy for the run. You could eat any of the following morning snacks:
- Granola Bar.
3. Pre-Run Hydration
You don’t want to start your run off thirsty. Make sure you drink 8 to 16 ounces of water at least 30 minutes before your run. It’s also a smart idea to bring a bottle of water or sports drink along with you for the run.
One of the most important running tips is to always do a warm-up for 5 to 7 minutes before you leave. This will prepare your muscles and body for the work it’s about to do. Your warm-up should consist of moderate-intensity exercises and plenty of stretches.
5. Choose Your Playlist
If you want to know how to start running in the morning, the key is to get in the right mindset. Your motivation will be your biggest challenge. The little things you do can keep you motivated. One of the easiest ways to look forward to your run is by choosing something good to listen to.
Many runners enjoy an upbeat playlist with songs that keep them energized. Others prefer listening to a podcast. Whichever your preference is, get it keyed up and ready before you go.
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3 Tips To Recover After A Morning Run
You might be feeling ready to tackle the day now that you’ve gotten your run in. But, it’s important that you allow your muscles to recover. When talking about morning running tips, it’s just as necessary to talk about recovery. This is important because it reduces the risk of injury and exhaustion after the run. Let’s take a look at how to recover after a morning run.
1. Cool Down
After your run, it’s important to cool down for 5 to 15 minutes. Your cool down will consist of stretching and light exercises. Never skip the cool down. It’s important because it lowers your heart rate and body temperature, while also regulating your blood flow. If you skip the cool down, you could become dizzy and risk fainting.
It’s time for another glass of water. Once you’ve completed your run, you will need to drink 8 to 16 ounces of water. This is important because your body just lost a lot of fluid during the run. If you don’t hydrate after running, you’re putting yourself at risk of:
- Low energy;
- Dry mouth;
- Bad breath;
- Muscle cramping;
- Gastrointestinal distress;
- Difficulties staying focused.
3. After Run Fuel
Runners should enjoy a protein-rich snack after their run. This is important because it helps the muscles recover. Eating a snack with carbohydrates is recommended as well because it will help you feel replenished. Many runners enjoy a smoothie or chocolate milk after their run is complete.
However, you can choose your post-run fuel based on your own preferences. Some delicious and healthy after-run breakfast foods include:
- Boiled eggs;
- Oatmeal (with your favorite toppings);
- Eggs and spinach on a tortilla wrap;
- Toast or bagel with peanut butter (or almond butter);
- Yogurt with fruit and granola;
- Smoothie or smoothie bowl;
- Protein pancakes.
Morning Running Tips
Now that you have a better understanding of how to prepare for a morning run, let’s talk about some additional tips. With the right morning jogging tips, you can set yourself up for a successful morning run routine. Let’s take a look at what you should know.
1. Keep Track Of Your Progress
The little things you can do to help keep yourself motivated. One of the best suggestions that advanced runners have passed down is to keep track of your progress. Keeping a running journal is a great way to see how your running is improving and what challenges you’re facing.
Runners that keep track of their progress have an easier time creating a weekly running plan that fits their skill level.
2. Start Slow
Making a plan for morning running is great. But, you have to be able to stick to that plan. You may hear of people heading out for their morning run at 5 am. While this sounds like a productive way to start a day, it may not immediately work for you if you’re used to waking up at 9 am.
Choose a reasonable time frame that works with your schedule. As you adapt to this new routine, you can gradually wake up earlier.
For many runners, the first 10 minutes of their morning jog is the toughest part. Don’t try to overdo yourself first. Instead, start slow and let your body adapt to the movement. Gradually pick up your pace as you go.
Also, don’t worry about being the fastest runner on the block. You’re already making amazing changes by getting up early and going for the run. It’s okay to start off with a light jog. As you accomplish more runs, you should be able to gradually improve your speed.
3. Change Up Your Routine
As you’re going through these tips, you might be wondering if there is anything you shouldn’t do. One mistake a lot of beginners make is going on the same run every morning. This could be taking the same route around your neighborhood or running at the same speed for the same time span on a treadmill.
If you run outdoors, you may find that the scenery gets repetitive. Another thing you may notice is that you become familiar with the path, so you won’t be challenging yourself. Take a look at an online map to find different routes in your area for running.
Treadmill runners can use the different features on their machines to change up their routines. Many treadmills come with an incline feature that’s similar to running uphill. Some machines also feature pre-programmed workouts where the runner will run intervals at different speeds. If you have a basic treadmill without features, you can challenge yourself with different speed intervals.
4. Avoid Naps
One of the keys to sticking with your morning run plan is to get a good night’s sleep. There may be certain times when a person needs a midday nap, such as when they’re sick or didn’t get a proper night’s sleep. However, there are also disadvantages to midday naps, especially for morning runners.
The biggest problem with a leisurely midday nap is that it will affect the quality of your night’s sleep. Some people experience insomnia, while others notice poor quality sleep. This can leave you feeling groggy when you get up in the morning and affect how your run goes.
5. Know That It Gets Easier
Doing something brand new is fun but can be challenging. For most beginners, the biggest challenge is keeping the right mindset. This is especially true for people that are used to sleeping in and going for midday or after-work runs.
If it feels like early morning runs are not your cup of tea, there’s one important thing to remember. It will get easier. Getting started is like pulling off a band-aid. You may not be looking forward to doing it, but you will feel better once you’re done. As you get into your routine, you will notice that it becomes easier to get up and get started.
Mastering Morning Runs: Essential Tips and Guidelines
How can I become a morning runner?
The most efficient way to become a morning runner is to prepare for it. When you’re prepared and ready to go, it’s easier for you to get in the right mindset.
Is it good to run as soon as you wake up?
An early morning run is good, but you don’t need to go the moment you wake up. Give yourself at least 30 minutes to use the washroom, hydrate, and fuel up.
Is it good to run in the morning on an empty stomach?
Always fuel up before a run, even if it’s just a small snack. Running on an empty stomach could present risks, such as muscle loss, low endurance, and a higher risk of injury. People with certain health conditions may be at risk of low blood sugar.
In Conclusion About Early Morning Runs
Nearly anyone can become a morning runner. You can get your own early morning running routine ready by following some of the tips we listed today. The most important thing to remember is that when you are prepared (mentally and physically) you will be less likely to skip out on the run.
Are you ready to get in the habit of early morning running? Let us know how you plan to stay motivated in the comments below.
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- Napping: Do’s and don’ts for healthy adults // Mayo Clinic:
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