Waking up for early morning runs can be a nightmare for many. Startled by the drill of the alarm, leaving a nice warm bed, battling with the snooze function, regretting your decision to wake up early before sloppily rolling out of bed, searching for the running gear you knew was around somewhere, a bitter resentment brewing for your alarm clock. It doesn’t have to be this way.
Follow these simple morning run steps a few times, and it’ll become habit to spring out of bed with the worlds opportunities calling.
Have the right reasons
Everything we do in life, we do for a reason. Sounds simple right? Often, people commit themselves to attractive ideas then quickly lose enthusiasm when putting it into practice. Whether it’s a new diet, investing money, adopting a study habit or starting a new job, we attack goals head on then our reasoning becomes cloudy causing demotivation.
Know why you are running. Think and brainstorm ideas. Write it down.
Are you losing weight, challenging yourself, raising money for charity, competing or boosting your fluid intelligence? Having a clear vision of your future self will compel you out of bed, into a day changing morning run.
Get an early night for an early morning
A suitable quantity and quality of sleep is essential for successful early runs. Sleep regulates a healthy heart, blood pressure, facilitates learning increases immune system functioning and your focus and muscle recovery. All required for exercising properly.
Children (5-10) need 10-11 hours, teens (11-17) need 8.5 to 9.5 hours and adults require 7-9 hours a night to perform best. If you can’t get up for an early run, you are probably not well rested, your body is literally fighting your mind, making it near impossible to get up. If you’re getting up at 6:00AM, try to get shut eye at 10:00PM. 5:00AM, go for 9:00PM. You’ll thank me later.
Place your alarm clock away from your bed
Force yourself to get out of bed, no excuses. Set your alarm, place it far out of reach so you must literally get out of bed and stop it. It sounds brutal, but it works wonders. To start, you will begrudgingly drag yourself out of bed muttering how much you hate your optimistic self from the night before, but soon enough you will jump out of bed with eagerness looking forward to the morning run ahead.
A desk is great, but you can get creative: a sock draw, wardrobe, bag or a bookshelf works well. Bonus points for setting two or more alarms. Before long, you will enjoy getting up.
What if you REALLY struggle?
you really struggle, don’t worry. You can get a special alarm clock. The CLOCKY has wheels built onto it which allow it to drive itself around your room, making it difficult to catch and turn off. You’ll hate this alarm clock at first, but will soon grow to appreciate it. It WILL get you up!
Alternatively, get a classic, loud, twin bell alarm clock. You can’t go wrong.
Automate as much as possible
To become an early runner, you must change your routine. Starting to rise early interrupts a well-established sleep-wake pattern, making your waking moments groggy and unaware.
Having to consciously make decisions of what to wear, finding running gear, planning a route, making a quick bite to eat, all drain vital willpower. Your decision-making capacity. Each decision you must think about immediately after waking, increases the likelihood of giving up and jumping back in bed. Don’t let that happen.
Automate. Make things easy for yourself. Choose, find and layout running clothes next to a glass of water before bed. Prepare and place a snack in the fridge, to quickly eat before heading out.
Your muscles are tight after a night of restful inactivity, so get the blood flowing with stretches to your neck, arms, legs and lower back. Not only will stretching reduce the risk of discomfort and injury whilst running, it gets oxygen pumping round the body and primes the muscles for running. Spend 3-5 minutes stretching, getting yourself ready for the run.
You’re ready to run!
You’re out of bed, stretched and ready for your early morning run. Repeat this regularly to make it a habit. Before you know it, getting up for an early morning run will be second nature.
Enjoy the peace and quiet as the world is starting to wake up.