When I first picked up running, the choice was easy. I would always run in the evening.
For the most part because that always meant that I didn’t have to get up early and change my morning routine. Overtime though, that changed and now I prefer to run in the mornings for a couple of different reasons.
This might seem almost counter intuitive to what you are trying to accomplish as a runner. You always want to improve your pace and set new personal records (PR).
I realized that I was able to go longer and further when I slowed my pace. Not only that but I also felt better after my runs. I am not talking about slowing it down by a minute, more in the 15 second to 30 second range.
This was a great way to wake up in the mornings and to get my muscles ready for the day. Sure, they were sore for the most part during the run but they quickly loosen up and I feel better about half a mile in.
I started to notice that during my evening runs, my pace would start out roughly a minute faster than I would normally go, and by the end of my run I would be barely making it home. This almost ruined my evenings and didn’t leave much time to spend with the family.
More Free Time
As a runner, our sport takes time. You want to take on 3 miles, you will need to dedicate anywhere between 20 – 30 minutes of your time. Go for 6 and you will need almost an hour.
As a parent, the time in the evenings is a time where I feel the need to spend time with my son. That is where running in the morning has its benefits. This allows my wife who is going through school, the time to go for a run herself in the evenings while I cook dinner.
It is difficult to wake up at 5am and hitting the pavement before anyone else in town is awake, but by the time I get to work, I already feel a sense of accomplishment.
Really the choice is up to you when you decide to run. Whether you chose your time out of convenience or because you race training, it’s up to you. Decide on a time and stick to it.