Early AM running motivation

Any tips or advice for becoming more of a morning runner? And please refrain from “just do it” tips :) I used to work nightshift for 7 years, so this is literally a biological reversal I am working on here.

I live up north so the sun sets extremely early in winter, leaving my only minimal free time for an outdoor run early AM before work/classes.

Tips appreciated, thank you!

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Replies

  • jhanleybrown
    jhanleybrown Posts: 240 Member
    edited November 2019
    90% of my exercise done pre work and pre family rising (often the hour hand is a #5). I'm 6 days/week.

    Staging the coffee maker is key for me so all I have to do is turn it on. So alarm goes off, I get up (but I am still asleep) - flick coffee maker on.

    And I treat myself to nice coffee. So the idea of turning on the coffee maker is a draw.

    So I don't have a "morning workout plan". I have a "morning coffee plan"........then I workout.

    Ps its 6:00 am and I'm sipping a delicious cup of coffee as I write this.

    Other: Avoid alcohol night before...a lot harder to get up. And obviously going to bed early also helps.
  • amyorbash
    amyorbash Posts: 6 Member
    I was never a morning person but I realized I did better getting workouts in before work opposed to after. I started five years ago & now I can’t start my day without some kind of workout or I feel kind of off the whole day.

    Tips for making it a lasting habit:

    - Definitely get everything ready the night before, I lay all of my clothes out & have my kitchen set up so I just have to throw my pre-run snack together & go

    - Start with shorter workouts then build up. I started with 30 mins/day now I workout 90-120 mins every morning.

    - Coffee is good but I use a pre-workout drink mix & it’s been a game changer. I use Honey Badger wild berry, it’s not overly stimulating & just wakes me up enough. (Side note: it does have Beta Alanine in it & can give you the “tingles” in your skin if you’ve never used it before)

    - Have an accountability partner, someone you check in with & share your workouts with. That’s what got me to stick to things the most, I never wanted to say to someone else I didn’t workout.

    Good luck with things! I’m a runner too & my morning runs are my fav time of day! I love the peacefulness & solitude of early mornings!
  • dewd2
    dewd2 Posts: 2,449 Member
    Just do it. :D:D:D

    I hate mornings but twice a week I get my lazy *kitten* up to run before the sun rises. I am part of a group of runners that meet at 6 AM and I'm the one who generally schedules the events on Facebook. Knowing that others will be there looking for me keeps me from blowing it off. After several years of this it has become a habit. Slowly I have become more of a morning person.

    Get some friends who want to run at the same time and see how that makes it easier.

    Good luck.
  • chris_in_cal
    chris_in_cal Posts: 2,155 Member
    @dewd2 "Just do it"? Thanks :)

    Great question. I do not run in the morning. All the cool, fast, people seem to run at oh-dark-thirty everyday. I want to be cool and fast. Do I have to get up early?
  • Djproulx
    Djproulx Posts: 3,084 Member
    Posted this one before, but it's still a great motivator when I'm tempted to blow off the alarm....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hbkZrOU1Zag
  • hmhill17
    hmhill17 Posts: 283 Member
    In my experience, it's easier if your schedule already has you getting up fairly early for your normal day. I have to get up to get the kids out of bed for school every morning anyway, so I put all my running stuff in the bathroom so I can change first thing. Then I wake them up, get them moving and drink coffee. When they leave with my wife, I leave to exercise for 45+ minutes.
  • emmamcgarity
    emmamcgarity Posts: 1,593 Member
    Perhaps try to wade into mornings a little at a time. A five minute walk or jog a few mornings a week may be less disruptive to your current schedule. Once that habit is in place, five or ten minutes earlier isn’t as difficult to add on. Use your afternoon/evening schedule for the bulk of your weekly mileage until you are able to comfortably switch to your sessions to the desired morning routine.
  • Jthanmyfitnesspal
    Jthanmyfitnesspal Posts: 3,521 Member
    OK: I suck at it. But, at times I've done it.

    1) Agree to meet up with a friend. This always works for me. I don't want to disappoint them.

    2) Get everything ready, lay it out, make a plan with minute-by-minute instructions.

    3) Reward yourself when you get it right. (Extra breakfast!) I like to take a selfie of me jogging in the sunrise.

    4) Turn the light out a bit early, visualizing your morning, step-by-step. (The advise to go 10 minutes earlier day-by-day is excellent. It should include bedtime.)

    5) Put your headphones on immediately as you get out of bed and listen to something inspiring. I like voice better than music, for some reason.
  • dewd2
    dewd2 Posts: 2,449 Member
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  • 796fra
    796fra Posts: 45 Member
    I work out at 5:30am every weekday and have for 2.5 years.

    Keys to my success:
    1. Techno music
    2. Some movement is better than none. Sometimes I "trick" myself with the promise that a walk will suffice, usually I end up with more effort than that
    3. Accountability partner (s). If I didn't post something on Strava I would hear from people for sure
  • RunFastLiveLong
    RunFastLiveLong Posts: 75 Member
    I know it sounds not so good but sleeping in your running gear works!

    Hydration as well as reasonably possible immediately has helped me too.

    The first mile is a liar, once you get that done - you are good.
  • tirowow12385
    tirowow12385 Posts: 698 Member
    emsmiley12 wrote: »
    Any tips or advice for becoming more of a morning runner? And please refrain from “just do it” tips :) I used to work nightshift for 7 years, so this is literally a biological reversal I am working on here.

    I live up north so the sun sets extremely early in winter, leaving my only minimal free time for an outdoor run early AM before work/classes.

    Tips appreciated, thank you!
    Sleep early.
  • mbaker566
    mbaker566 Posts: 11,233 Member
    I know it sounds not so good but sleeping in your running gear works!

    yes! i used to do this when i was a morning runner.
  • samspam1023
    samspam1023 Posts: 36 Member
    I haven't figured this out yet, either. I am actually ok with mornings, but where I live isn't safe to run outside alone in the dark. I only run in the morning right now on the weekend when I have people to run with. I am fortunate to have an hour lunch and a small gym in my work building, so I run at lunch twice a week and strength train twice a week.
  • steveko89
    steveko89 Posts: 2,214 Member
    It's a habit I find I have to actively support. Do everything you can to remove/mitigate your obstacles to set yourself up for success; lay out your clothes, prep breakfast the night before, find the right alarm, get to bed on time, improve your sleep hygiene, etc. If you're a chronic snoozer there's a free app called Alarmy that has worked well for me. It makes you do a "mission" before you can fully turn off your alarm, ranging from math problems to having to take a picture of something or scan a QR code. I try to avoid using it regularly but it's handy for a morning where I can't afford to spend time snoozing.
  • pondee629
    pondee629 Posts: 2,469 Member
    If you want to run and the morning is the only time you can run, there's YOUR "motivation". Since it's the only time you have to do what YOU want to do, that's the time to do it. Of course, if you don't want to run, that's OK too. But, that is your choice. I don't understand the lack of motivation to do something you want to do. I always needed a push to do the things I needed/have to do but really didn't want to. So, do what you want when you can. It'll be a test of how much you want to run.