Happy Thursday everyone! I hope you’re all having a great week so far and staying hydrated and cool in this intense heat.
Tuesday morning, I headed out for a run with my local run club, Believe/Achieve. I’ve mentioned run club a few times on this blog, but as soon as I moved here, I immediately joined a run club to meet people. The run club is sponsored by our local Try Sports store, and so far, it’s been great. I’ve met lots of other runners and found plenty of cool places to run. Locals know the best places, and with running longer distances , you have time to chat and form friendships. Before you know it, you’ve met someone new AND accomplished a 4 mile run- awesome huh?
Before moving to Charleston, I wasn’t a morning runner. I went to work at 7 AM in an office, and it made more sense to run between work and coaching track because I had an hour and a half break between getting off work and track practice. Being a morning runner would mean I had to wake up super early, run, shower, head to work, find something to do for an hour and a half, coach, shower again, and sleep, so it just wasn’t practical.
This summer’s been great for morning runs. First, it gets me up and out of bed, and I get a workout in before the intense South Carolina heat and humidity kick in. It also forces me to shower and get dressed for work, which is important because I work from home now, and showering and being dressed makes me a more productive employee. Granted, “dressed for work” consists of shorts and a t-shirt when you work from home, but it beats pajamas.
A lot of people say they wish they could get up and run in the mornings, so I’m going to give a few tips that have helped me over the past few weeks.
- Don’t think about it. When I tell people I wake up at 5 AM to run, I get crazy looks because it’s just crazy. If you think about the crazy, you won’t do it- so don’t let your mind fully “turn on” until you’re on the road. By then you’re already sweaty, so you’ll keep going.
- Lay your clothes and shoes out at night, stumbled into them, and just go.
- Save breakfast for after the run. First, you would have to wait for breakfast to digest, meaning you might think about it and your mind might convince you morning running isn’t a good idea. I do drink a little coffee and eat breakfast after I run. That way, it’s my recovery meal. Sometimes after our morning runs, we go out to Subway or a local coffee shop, so that’s another nice treat for getting out of bed.
- Run with a group. Skipping a morning run when it’s just you is tempting, but I’ll do anything for friends, including waking up at a crazy time for running.
- Use your run for reflection. Sometimes on my morning run, I gather my thoughts on what’s going on that day, think about others, and have my happy quiet time. It’s my little time for getting myself together mentally, which is what I used to do for a few minutes each morning at work.
And of course, there’s the obvious benefits when you’re done. When you finish, you’ve done more exercise than most people do all day, before others are even awake- definitely worth the accomplished feeling, and I find that confidence extends into my whole day.
The Charleston sunrises aren’t bad either, and one of the run clubbers, Robert M., takes pictures each morning. Here’s a pic of the sunrise over Shem Creek, which is where I ran Tuesday morning.
And here’s the sunrise over the Arthur Ravenel Bridge, which crosses the Cooper River. There’s a huge 10K run each Spring on this bridge, but why wait for that when you can run four miles on it on a random Thursday morning?
It’s been sooo worth it so far!
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