Every few years I try to become a morning person. Every few years, I fail. Try as I might, morning just isn’t my bag, baby. And especially now, when the kids take turns waking me up during the night. But I still love these tips from Digifit, a heart-rate monitoring app for iPhone. They make me think that I can be a morning person after all. I am due to give it another shot…
10 Tips to Maximize the Morning Run
1. Power down early. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night to stay healthy, fit and energized. If you find yourself staying up late to catch up on the latest headlines or to play Words with Friends, it’s time to start powering down the gadgets to hit the hay earlier and get a restful night’s sleep. More sleep means better performance and mental clarity throughout the day and will help you get out of bed in the morning too.
2. Hydrate. Your body needs approximately 16 ounces of water in the morning, which you’ll need to fuel your run, so set a glass of water by your bed to remind yourself to drink up before you hit the pavement. You may also consider drinking a glass of water before bed to aid the replenishing of fluid loss from your day, which will jumpstart your morning hydration too.
3. Lay out your clothes. Don’t wait to round up your running clothes and gear until morning. Having it all ready to go in the morning makes it easier to get out of bed and dressed for a run before work. Whether your running gear is waiting for you in the bathroom or next to the front door, pick a spot you won’t avoid. Sleeping in your running clothes sounds silly, but it may provide that extra motivation to get up and go when the alarm buzzes!
4. Map out your route. Whether training for a race or simply enjoying the morning air, map out a route to ensure you’re putting in the time and mileage desired. If your regular running route starts feeling stale, switch it up with a trail or a different route altogether. Use GoogleMaps to determine a new route that meets your distance or timing needs, or check Strava’s Segment Explorer feature to find challenging new segments to run based on other user’s feedback.
5. Pick a run buddy. Getting out for a run before the sun has risen is a lot easier and more fun when you have someone there with you. Even your dog can be the perfect running companion. However, if you don’t have any early risers or runners in your circle of friends, consider joining a local running group to get you motivated. Sites like ExerciseFriends.com can be helpful, as they connect community members who share similar activity interests, which makes finding a running buddy a lot easier. Contact your local running store for information on other local resources.