I’m Not an F’ing Morning Runner

eff-this

BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! 

*Young Bergamot’s hand emerges from under a pile of blankets to smack the alarm clock*

Once upon a time in a land not too far away, I ran in the morning. Only once a week, but still, I met up with a training group for Saturday morning long runs. The camaraderie made the runs feel easy and this group felt like a big ol’ running family. And there were usually pancakes after, but I had to sacrifice my social life on Friday nights, which was extra-tragic because I lived in a hopping part of the city.

Those people have become friends that I wouldn’t trade for the world, but even hanging out with them isn’t worth that early morning running shit. 

Let me set the record straight. I’m quite motivated to run, but the thing is, I’m also quite motivated to sleep. Just because I’m not up at the buttcrack of dawn, snapchatting my way through my morning miles doesn’t mean that I don’t have an actual morning routine. Instead of waking up in the middle of the night and swearing as I stumble my way to pouring the coffee into my running shoes, my morning routine consists of waking up and stepping out of bed as I tousle my perfect hair with actual daylight highlighting the smile on my face. Well, not really. I just stumble and swear in the daylight, but it’s seriously f’ing better than that middle of the night shit.

And let me say that I actually do love the people who snapchat and Insta their way through the beginning of the day because I get to read and watch from the comfort of my own bed. It’s my morning entertainment and a little reminder to me that, “Hey, Self! This is going to be you later, but with fewer dark circles under your eyes and less crabbiness right before lunch. Get ready!”

And please just STAHP with the “great start to my day” crap. Running before work does not make me feel ready to conquer the world, it makes me feel ready to conquer the bagel tray at my morning meetings and barely able to conquer my closing eyelids during the early afternoon fits of narcolepsy.

much-better
I like my coffee when I like my running… In the daylight!!

I get it. Some people must run before the sun because that’s the only time in their day that they can. But if it’s not? WHAT THE EVER-LOVING F ARE YOU DOING THAT FOR? At this point in my life, I have the luxury of not having a spouse, kids, or even a regular day-job. Even when I did work eight-to-five, I ran after work. I often took my running clothes to work and drove straight to a trail to wind down after a stressful day. I looked forward to work ending, because it meant it was time to go run through the woods … without the fear of being feasted upon by nocturnal animals. Yippee!

Speaking of nocturnal animals, I’m not a vampire, yo. If it weren’t for running during daylight hours, I would basically be translucent with a vitamin D drip. I often run in the middle of the day, my one hour per weekday of the great outdoors and sunshine. Especially in the winter: girl, you need that sun. Not to mention, running half asleep in the dark on the icy snowy roads and leaving my nice warm comfy bed for negative windchill gusts in my face? Nope.

And what time do you dark morning people go to bed, because I can’t remember the last time I was asleep before midnight. That’s simply not how my body works and also that’s when I do all the things and watch all the shows. And, a more important question, when do these people ever go out to da club?

Are you an early morning runner? 

I'm a student of law and life. A Jill of all trades, master of none. But I'm hoping to master something, sometime. ;) Preferably a sub-23 5k and a sub-4 marathon!

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26 comments

  1. I am 100% a morning person. To the extreme – I can’t sleep past 4:30am for the life of me and am usually out the door for my run by 5:00am. The last week, I’ve been wide awake around 4:05. It gets to be really frustrating, because even when I go to bed after midnight, I still wake up no later than 5am and can’t go back to sleep. I have to admit that I love running in the mornings. For some reason, when I run in the afternoon/evening, my runs go horribly (WHY??). The effort I put out is just so much more to maintain even the slowest pace, and then I feel exhausted the next day and mad with my body. Whereas, if I run in the morning, I feel energized the whole day (except on long run and speed work days). I go to bed embarrassingly early… There are some nights I can’t stay awake past 8pm (a good sign my iron is getting low), but I normally go to bed between 9-9:30pm. Makes having a social life difficult. I would love to be more of a night person, or at least find a happy medium! And I would love to get to the point where afternoon running is just as satisfying and energizing as morning running.

      1. BAH. This was supposed to go in response to Barley. Sorry Becky! Unless you’re also pregnant, in which case, it still applies!

    1. Oh my gosh!! Me too!! I am a natural born morning person and my built in alarm clock is going off most days by 4 am. And I like that, lol:).

  2. Bergs! I so feel you on this! More accurately I have a love/hate relationship with early morning runs. The last time I was running early, I ended up burned out and overtrained, but I think it wasn’t the morning running. But since then, sleep is a super high priority and like you I have a hard time unwinding and getting to sleep before 11 or so. With kids, although running early is nice because it gets done with minimal life-intrusions, I also really enjoy the evenings after they’re in bed. It’s really my only time to veg. But if I ever train seriously again, I’d probably go back to mornings just because it’s really the best time to get running in with fewest infringements on family and other obligations.

  3. I’m totally a morning runner and probably would be even without kids and a regular job and yeah, totally guilty of the “great way to start my day” crap, ha ha! But! I have been lucky enough to travel to Spain for work on three occasions and when in Spain? No way did I run early. Not in a country that won’t feed you dinner before 8pm at the earliest! By the time dinner was over and hanging out and enjoying all the Spanish amazingness, no way was an early morning run happening.

    1. Cool! Where have you been in Spain? I didn’t think the day would come, but after a year here, I’ve totally adjusted to the Spanish eating schedule! I have been eating lunch at 3:30 every day this week!

  4. NOT a morning runner, I feel ya Bergie.

    That said, there have been times during training that it was the only time I could run. On those days- I made it happen most of the time because I knew I had to. Otherwise, let me sleep!

  5. I have always been a morning runner! In fact, my current schedule means I don’t get to run until a couple of hours after I’ve been up and I’m antsy – much prefer rolling out of bed and out the door. The great thing about running though, we can do it whenever we want to or can!

  6. I wish I was a morning person. But with my job, I just can’t get out of bed early most days. And when I do, I usually wind up taking a nap later in the day anyway! I am a mid-day runner tooo–I make the most out of the winter sunlight!

  7. I’m a hard core early morning runner (out and back before the sunrise), but I totally get not liking it. It’s definitely not a gentle way to start the morning! Especially in winter! Because of schedule changes, I had to switch to evening runs and it really threw my mind and body for a loop. It’s crazy how we get used to our routines. I ended up writing a post on it because the shift was so challenging. http://betterthanalive.com/running-in-the-mornings/

  8. Back when I was still teaching, I was a consistent 5:00am runner during the work week and a 6:00am or earlier on the weekend for a long run type. I always had friends to meet up with and it WAS fun, but I couldn’t go to bed early (too much to do and it’s hard for me to unwind) so I was basically sleep-deprived all the time. Now that I’m at home and can run when I want, I NEVER miss getting up in the dark to run. Mid-morning is so much nicer!

  9. I always laugh at myself when I see this topic. In high school and college I was such a night owl and would sleep in as late as I possibly could. I can’t quite remember when I became a morning person, a long time ago that’s for sure. Because I work full time as a teacher and have to be out the door by 6:45 am and then come home to be second job as a Mom of four school age children (plus one toddler), I do have to workout and/or run in the morning. Most days I am up without an alarm by 4:00/4:15. On the weekend, sleeping in for me is 5:30/6:00. I love being a morning person – the peace and serenity is blissful. Going to the gym before dawn and having hardly anyone there and no competition for any piece of equipment – even better!! It does suck that since I have to run so early (like 4:15/4:30 am early on week days), most of those runs are solo and it can be lonely. But again, it gives me time to mentally prepare for my day. Run over my to-do list, and just be mindful of my life happenings. Performance wise – oh man- I do SO MUCH better in the afternoon. For obvious reasons – I am warmed up and just have a little more drive and motivation. This week I was lucky enough to get in two afternoon/evening runs and they were awesome!! I think to each his own on this topic. My husband is a night owl and hates the morning, total bear of a person before 9 am. It is the yin and yang of our relationship that works so wonderfully for our family. I never force my Betsy Bright cheerfulness on him just like he doesn’t give me crap when it is 8:30-9:00 pm and I am dozing off on the couch ready to hit the hay.

    1. Michelle, we’re twins, right down to our husbands! I just don’t know how to sleep, lol. Always up without an alarm by 4-4:30. I feel the exact same way about early morning runs, but like you, my performance is much better mid morning or early afternoon. Because of chronic insomnia, if I run too late in the afternoon it’s hard. I can’t imagine ever being able to run in the evening, lol!

      1. LOL!! Right?! I use to have awful insomnia and would run in to the same problem with being ready for bed at 5 pm. I have been using some essential oils (because I have tried a ton of remedies) and that has been working for me pretty well. On average, I get about 6-6.5 hours of sleep and with a lot of daily coffee use, I am pretty good.

  10. I’m a morning runner but also hate the cold, so it gets very conflicting, lol. It’s much easier to throw on clothes and go out when the sun is already up and I don’t need a million layers. Also, I have a so-so stomach so if I wait until the end of the day, I never know if it will go well or not.

    1. I always was amazed how much warmer temps felt in the dark morning than when the sun came out! My husband said it’s a real phenomenon, but maybe that’s enough of a mental boost for your next cold morning run 🙂

  11. I relate! The only reason I run early is when I have running partners that need to run that early or the rare occasion that I need to run that early. If there’s no one to meet me, that alarm gets put on snooze over and over again until I just turn it off. If you don’t have a reason to run at 5 a.m. it is just crazy to do that instead of running in the day time.

  12. Thank you!! I hate running early in the morning. I’ll do it once in awhile if there’s a very good reason (like I know it’ll be 90° by the time I’m done with work), but mostly it’s a great big NOPE.

  13. Running in the late morning has, physically, always been ideal for me – best entergy, best workouts, best performance. Totally unfeasible with the realities of life, of course. Luckily I enjoy morning running, but it wipes me out entirely. Bed by 8PM with my kids and I lose all time to engage in any other hobby. But, man, best moment of the day usually happens on that morning run!

  14. I’m not a morning runner. I don’t enjoy running in the dark and feeling tired. Then by 2-3pm when my kids are acting like crack heads and I’m sleepy that’s no fun. I enjoy sleeping and I hear it’s good for recovery ?. I have no problem running a 20 miler alone to have more sleep. plus I don’t feel efficient running at 4-5 in the morning.

  15. In the summer, 100% morning runner – but it’s not that dark or cold. In the winter it depends – I have weird work hours, so most days I can run mid-day (and unless I’m meeting someone who has to run early that is when I run) when it is warmer/not icy/and around me, actually less traffic. Saturday’s I have to run in the morning b/c of my job and Sunday’s I choose too because we have a good size group that goes out, and for a long run I like company. However, if the morning weather is not safe and I can run later then I will. I also like to do some workouts early because that is generally when races are – but not like o’dark-thirty early.