Five tips to become an early morning runner

Now that summer is officially here, and temps are on the rise, I’m back to running early in the morning to hopefully find some fo the cooler temps of the day. I’ve shared before some benefits of early morning running, so today I thought I’d share some tips on how to shift your clock to become an early morning runner.

Get some sleep: OK let’s start with the obvious – if you want to get up early, you’ve got to get your zzz’s, so of course, that means get to bed at a reasonable time.

Be prepared: Lay out clothing and gear the night before – eliminate the need to stand in a dark closet fumbling around for something to wear or skipping a run because you can’t find your Garmin.

Lose the snooze: Put your alarm clock out of reach – if you have to get up to turn off your alarm you’re less likely to hit snooze.

Ease into it: And speaking of that alarm, I’d recommend starting slowly. Don’t set your alarm that first morning for o’dark thirty right off the bat. Ease your way into the early morning hours, shifting the alarm back over several days.

Find a buddy: Knowing that someone is waiting for you will get you out of bed. You never want to leave a friend hanging.

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What’s your best tip for becoming an early morning runner?

I’m linking up with Rachel from Running on Happy and Lacey & Meranda from Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five link-up!

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Five Benefits of Morning Running

Happy Friday!

If you’ve been hanging out around here then you know that one of my goals this month is to get back to early morning runs. I’m happy to say that so far I’m crushing this goal, and while I admit some mornings are harder than others, I’m loving these runs. Today’s Friday Five theme is “favorites” so I thought I’d share some benefits of why it’s worth it to get up and out early.

Workout of early

No schedule conflicts — This one is huge for me! I love being able to “check the box” off my to do list and not stress about how I’m going to fit in a run later in the day.

More time in your day — Taking care of my workout early also leaves me feeling much more in control of my day, and with more time to get things done.

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Better breathing — Getting out and done before too many commuters hit the road means breathing in less car exhaust.

Metabolism jump start — With an early morning workout you kick your metabolism into high gear, burning more calories at a faster rate throughout the day.

Better sleep — Inevitably getting up earlier means going to bed earlier. As a result, I’m finding that I’ve been sleeping better and overall feel more rested.

**Bonus** — A chance to catch a beautiful sunrise!

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When’s your favorite time to run?

Linking up with Courtney, Mar and Cynthia – stop by and see what favorites everyoe’s sharing this week! DC-Trifecta-Friday-Five-linkup

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April Runfessions

I feel like I say this at the end of every month, but seriously, where did April go!? Well, it’s the last Friday of the month so I’m linking up with Marcia again for another edition of Runfessions. Join us!

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Runfession #1 – While I appreciate having the flexibility of running midday (thanks to working from home), I am clearly an early morning runner. As I returned to early morning runs this month, I really find I’m just much more settled during the rest of my day.

Runfession #2 — I cut both of my runs short this week thanks to some discomfort in my left knee. Truthfully, something didn’t feel good about half way through the BAA 5K and the knee hasn’t felt great ever since.

Runfession #3 — There are 44 days until the Newport 10 miler and I am not where I want to be…sigh.

Runfession #4 — On the good side, I’m still rocking the plank challenge and my strength days at the gym are my favorite days of the week!

So tell me, what’s your Runfession? What’s your preferred time of day to run?

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Friday Five – National Running Safety Month

November is National Running Safety Month. I shared some safety tips during November last year  – but as a new member of the 0’dark thirty running club I thought some of these tips were worth re-visiting.

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Light It Up — It may seem so obvious and yet I continue to see runners pre-dawn (and well after dusk) running with absolutely no lights or reflective gear on. The little reflective strip on your running shoes is not enough  – reflective vests, arm bands and the like are a must. Carrying lights or wearing a headlamp also make you visible, with the added bonus of lighting your path as you run.

Find a Buddy — There’s always safety in numbers. Find a running buddy or try running with your dog.

Leave the Tunes — As much as I enjoy running with music, I think it’s so much more important to be completely tuned into your surroundings, especially when it’s dark and you can’t see as well.

Bring your Phone — If you must go it alone, bring your phone. Hopefully you won’t need it, but it’s always better to have it.

Share Your Route — Always make sure someone knows your route, when you’re leaving and when you expect to be back. I have a handful of favorite routes and my husband knows them as well as I do.

**Bonus tip: Try to vary your route and time — I know this one can be hard, especially if you’ve got to get your run in before work or the kids get up, but be careful not to follow such a pattern of behavior that someone can pick up on your schedule.

 Are you a member of the o’dark thirty club?

What’s your best safety tip?

 

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November’s Ultimate Coffee Date

It’s the first Saturday of the month so that means it’s time to join in on the Ultimate Coffee Date! This month I’m linking up with Coco at Running with Perseverance.  This is always a great time to catch up, so grab a mug and pull up a chair!

If we were having coffee together, I’d tell you that I started a new job last month! It’s a long-term consulting gig with a nonprofit – first time for me working in the nonprofit arena. It’s part-time hours and I can work from my home office – huge win!

If we were having coffee together, I’d tell you that with the new job I’ve needed to shift my running time to o’dark thirty and boy am I struggling to get my face out of the pillow! Except for summer months, when I head out uber-early to beat the heat, I usually don’t run until post-school bus/mid-morning. But now I need to be out and back before my kids (and the sun!) are up. Too early

If we were having coffee together, I’d tell you that since I’ve made my decision about Philly, running has become a lot less stressful for me – definitely a sign that it was the right decision.

If we were having coffee together, I’d tell you that our family is doing “30 Days of Thankful” where each day everyone will share at least one thing they’re thankful for. I’ve been thinking a lot about gratitude lately, especially where my kids are concerned. As we head into the season of consumerism on overdrive (aka the holidays), I’m hoping to help them strike a balance.

If we were having coffee together, I’d tell you that I  haven’t been able to comment on other blogs for almost a week. So frustrating! I’ve been working with Akismet so my posts are flagged as spam. They keep telling me that they’ve fixed it but it’s still not working. So please know that I’m not being rude – hopefully I’ll be back to commenting soon 🙂 .

If we were having coffee together what would you tell me?

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Thursday Thoughts

It’s not the Heat it’s the Humidity….we’ve been in the midst of a heat wave since the weekend so that means the return to early morning runs! Making the shift is always a little tough the first few days, but I do love the feeling of being home and done long before the kids have to be out the door for school.

And speaking of school….we have finally hit the home stretch! Tomorrow is the last day 🙂 Hard to believe that I will soon be mom to a 2nd grader and a middle-schooler! As we’ve been inching closer to the last day of school, the boys have been steadily adding to our Summer Bucket List – they’ve got big plans for the next 9 1/2 weeks. Let the fun begin!

ramps-smallIn the “What is she thinking category?“…I’ve been debating between the 5K and 10K for next week’s Finish at the 50 and then I got an email with this picture. Those are ramps inside Gillette Stadium – they’re also the final 2.2 miles of the 10K course! We all know how much I hate don’t love hills, especially at the end of a run, but believe it or not I’ve decided I’m going to do the 10K. If this crazy heat continues I may be cursing this decision…stay tuned 😉

Don’t forget….my Designer Whey Sustained Energy giveaway  ends tonight at 11:00 p.m. EST

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Monday Monday

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I love getting in an early morning run on a Monday – love the feeling of accomplishment and it’s not even 8:30 yet! Sets a good tone for the week ahead.

After a rough night of sleep (I have bouts of insomnia), that 5:15 alarm sounded like nails on a blackboard so I asked J to hit the Snooze twice for 20 more minutes — yes the alarm clock is on his side of the bed…I’m not a morning person and despite my preference for morning runs, if the clock were on my side the Snooze button and I would be BFFs. 20 minutes later I was greeted with some rap/pop number (note to self – check the radio station on the alarm clock) and while I wasn’t feeling any peppier I did get up this time, stumbled over the dog and made my way down to the kitchen. As I mentioned before, I’m searching for the right pre-run meal so there was a moment of indecision as I debated whether I would even bother eating. But since I was hoping to get 7 in, I leaned towards eating something and settled on a Honey Stringer, and planned to carry a GU with me just in case.

I got my act together and got out the door and was a half mile into the run when I realized I’d left my handheld and GU sitting on the kitchen counter….oh well, just keep going. I swear every morning should be like this morning….temps in the high 50s, a slight breeze, sun just breaking through and no humidity – perfect! After 28 miles last week (most I’ve ever done), I wasn’t sure how my legs would do – but they felt surprisingly good. Soon I was back home, 7.5 miles done and a negative split on the back half – a good start to the day and week 9 of the training plan!

Now I’m off to rally the kids – we’re taking off for a few days on Wednesday (sqeezing in a mini vacation before school starts next week) and of course there a bunch of errands to do before we leave.

Happy Monday!

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A Good Morning

Ran 10.25 miles this morning.

It was a perfect summer morning – still cool, a slight breeze, the sun bright but not intense yet. There were lots of runners out taking advantage of the break in the humidity — everyone I passed seemed to be enjoying the morning, enjoying being a runner…there were a lot more “Morning” ‘s today and the runner’s wave…even some smiles…better than the grunts and pained looks I’ve seen on recent runs. Saw a couple of friends out running too and chatted briefly – always a pick me up to see friendly faces!

I love that I still get a little giddy when I see that double-digit on my Garmin. I remember where I was last summer, when getting to 6 was a huge deal. I love that sense of accomplishment (both then and now)…hope that feeling never goes away!

Hubs took on getting the kids ready and off to camp – I actually had the luxury of stretching and foam rolling post-run instead of the usual mad dash! So now it’s me, the dog, a cup of coffee and a quiet house – perfect way to start a Friday 🙂

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Don’t forget my McDavid compression sleeve giveaway ends Sunday!

Have a Great Weekend!
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Thursday Thoughts (aka 3 Things)

Crazy schedule wrapping up the school year, plus taking a a few days off after the race turned June into one of my lowest mileage months this year.

With school finally done, we’re settling into a summer routine around here and I’ve been pushing the alarm clock back to get those early morning runs in – must be working cause I woke up at 5:30 this morning without the alarm…only problem was today’s a rest day.

I loved reading everyone’s comments about how fast to do a long run. I have 10 miles on the plan for tomorrow. This will be the first time going back up to double digits since the race so I’ve decided to just run by feel and see where I come out pace-wise — should serve as a good benchmark. I’ll also be testing out my Nathan hydration belt.

Can you believe tomorrow is July 1 already?!?!
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