Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Calling All Morning Runners

Hi Moms--

I'm looking for some advice on running in the very early hours of the morning. Basically I want to be able to run at 5ish am but I'm not sure how to start. Of course motivation is always an issue that early but I am also stiff (40 being only 1 yr away) plus I'm really hungry when I wake up but I don't like to eat a ton before I run. So best advice for quickly working out the kinks and how you handle early morning nutrition. Motivation ideas wouldn't hurt either. Thanks!

10 comments:

libbysmom said...

For about a year I ran at 5:30 3 times a week. The things that worked for me were. Laying out my clothes next to my toilet (I would put them on while I used it), waking at 5 and eating a small bowl of cereal or toast, and having a friend in my neighborhood who would meet me and jog with me. She moved and I live in an area that is too scary to jog alone, or I would still do it. I loved it, and it made my whole day great. Good luck!

Tall Girl Running said...

I'm doing early morning workouts as well. I like to take my time getting going, so I set my alarm another 15 minutes earlier. I'll sometimes take a quick shower to help wake up, have a small bite to eat, stretch a little while watching the news and just generally get my blood flowing. By the time I start, it's still insanely early but being up longer doesn't make it feel like I'm going straight from my bed to the road. Also, it goes without saying, but you've GOT to get enough sleep. I'm often in bed around nine... definitely not the life of the party, but it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make.

Good luck!

Tall Girl Running said...

One more thing regarding motivation: it's an incredibly satisfying feeling to come home at six or seven in the morning having done something so good for myself while most people are still in bed. It's the one thing I do for me and ONLY me... and that's a heckuva motivation.

Heather said...

So, I am not as "organized" as libbysmom and tall girl running. However, I completely agree with the satisfaction of finishing at 6:30-7am and having spent some quality time just for me. My day goes MUCH better. So, I get up about 20 before I meet my running partner (a must if at all feasible) I quickly dress and gear up ie: reflective vest and head lamp and MANY layers of clothes for the winter. If our run is going to be longer than 60 min I will eat a half a piece of bread or tortilla or small piece of fruit. I will also drink a small amt of water before I start. We also will start out slow. . .probably marathon pace for the first 10-15 min and then will pick it up to 10K pace. So far this has worked for me but I will be the first to say that it is all trial and error. I would recommend trying a couple of different things and then seeing what works best for you and where you live. I really think it is all about being flexible and willing to adapt. Good Luck

amydear said...

I always have to psyche myself up the night before. Just get out of bed and get moving. I like to eat a half of a banana. I do better with a bit of food in my stomach, but I wasn't always that way. I also drink about 6 oz. of water. Turning on a light helps. If you stay in the dark, you stay drowsy. And I always tell myself I can go really, really slow the first mile. By about .75 I'm usually warmed up and enjoying it. Good luck! Oh yeah, I set my alarm for 15 minutes before I want to be out the door, I have a routine and I don't like to rush it. And I agree about getting to bed early. Makes all the difference.

JP said...

Really early is about the only time I have to run during the week before my kids head to school and I head to work. I love it dearly, but I'd be lying if I didn't admit how hard it is sometimes. It helps me to remember why I love it: the "me" time, the improvement it gives to any day, the sense of accomplishment, etc.

I run by myself, so during the winter, I hit the gym since it's so dark that early in the morning. It's really the only time I'm able to watch the news. :)

As for the food: I will usually take a couple of bites of a granola, NuGo, Luna Bar, etc to make sure I have a little something in my tummy.

Polliwog said...

I'm like the others, though I eek out every minute of sleep I can. (I'm still getting up twice a night to nurse, so I need whatever I can get.) Laying clothes out the night before is a must; running partner meeting me is a must; a quick stretch and a half cup or so of orange juice is all I do for a run less than 6 miles (i can't stomach water first thing in the morning). More than that and I'll eat half a banana and/or half a mini-bagel.

I am always glad I went, but it is so painful for me to actually do it each and every morning. I want to do 4 mornings but have not been able to make that jump yet. Still at 3. Good luck!

Stephanie and Co. said...

I like to use a headlamp when I run in the wee small hours of the morning. It makes me more visible and I can see potholes better.
I agree with the other runners who lay their clothes out the night before.
I've found that graham crackers are a good morning snack before a run. I can eat one or two, drink a glass of water and be ready to go in about 15 min. I think you have to experiment a little with food to see what works for you.

go_laura said...

Not that I'm a pro by any means, but I LOVE "Zoom" cracked wheat (like oatmeal) in the morning before a run - it fills me up w/o sloshing around when I run.

:)

Sher said...

I am a morning runner. I go with a group every other day at 5am. Here are the things that work for me:
Go with someone. I'm not a morning person, and knowing someone is waiting for me motivates me to get up. I also keep a thermometer in my bathroom, so I know how cold it will be, so I know how to dress. I wear a reflective belt, or you can use a vest, or headlamp or something reflective. I have to eat before I run. I usually eat a banana, or orange, or a slimfast shake. Something that will stay with me the whole run, plus it's fast to eat, and water.