Performance and motivation problems

Hi, I'm on W7R3 today. Usually I would go out for a morning run but I'm not sleeping well this week so I've decided to try an evening run instead for today.

I was just wondering if anyone found any differences between morning and evening runs in terms of their performance?

I thought I'd got my mojo back, but I haven't. I last ran on Monday and I don't know if it's because I'm not sleeping that well but I'm really struggling to get myself out there again.

I feel so close to completing C25k and yet I don't understand why I'm stuttering.

I've just written out the top three reasons why I run and printed them off and have them blu-tacked to my fireplace so I can see them clearly when sat on the sofa!!!

Feel a bit better for having done that.

Am wondering about whether to try a park run this weekend, but may be I'm setting myself up to fail?

Any one any advice or inspiration?

Thanks in advance.

25 Replies

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  • I always find it easier to run in the evenings, even if I've been at work all day and up since 6am. I get in around 7, get changed and head straight out the door. If its a longer run, I'll have a banana as I leave the office.

    Always seem to find that i have more energy and I sleep far better after an evening run!

  • thanks for your advice. I've had a banana, just need to get out the door for a run now :)

  • Likewise - 5k in an hour or so for me. You can do it!!

  • I prefer morning runs to evening runs, but that's because I haven't really cracked that "how much should I eat before my run?" question for evening runs. For the morning run, I get up a bit earlier than usual, go for my run, shower and then have breakfast and I feel set up for the day. For an evening run though, I find I'm always starving when I get home from work. If I eat first I feel bloated. If I don't though, I'm just irritable and not pleasant to be with (and that's an understatement). I got very close to mugging someone for their fish and chips the other week...

    As far as motivation goes - I just keep a photo of the tub of lard I used to be on the back of the biscuit cupboard door. I can't fail to see it when I go on a stuff my face raid and am instantly remotivated to get out and get some exercise instead.

    If you are at the end of week 7 and looking for motivation then I would say parkrun is a must. Go to the back of the pack just before the start and look around you. You'll soon realise that there are all sorts of shapes and sizes of people round you and you are not going to be the slowest (and even if you are - does it matter?). Run as much as you want and then walk. Lots of other people will be. It's great though just to be out there with other people. The thing that I discovered about parkrun when I first went is that not everyone is superfast. I'm convinced that on my local run we have a couple of people that don't actually run at all. Give parkrun a try. You'll enjoy it and it may be the trigger you need to remotivate yourself.

  • Hi Adamb, I had thought of running 1st thing in the morning, but tend to get up, changed, have breakfast (light meal of cereal with a cuppa and then a pint of water) and then after an hour head out for the run. Do you have anything before you run or do you bring water with you and sip it while you are out?

  • I get up, clean my teeth, shave etc. and then get out straight away. I don't have anything to eat or drink before I leave the house. If I'm going out for under an hour i won't take anything to drink - I'll not dehydrate in that time. If I'm going out for longer i'll take a small bidon with me.

    Waiting for an hour before going out wouldn't work for me unless I started getting up at silly o'clock This rather defeats the purpose of going out first thing (how to fit a run into a busy day without messing the rest of the family's timetable up).

  • I just checked my local parkrun results. The slowest person was 33 mins!!!! I'm waaaay slower than that. Might do a parkrun further away from home with more people.

    Thanks for your suggestion though. :)

  • That's a very fast (small?) parkrun. 33 minutes would have put you in at 250th out of 311 runners at my parkrun last week. There were 4 runners excluding the tail end charlie who took over 50 minutes. I'd look around for one where there are slower runners.

    Also, remember that you will probably knock something off your personal best simply because there are other runners around. I know that I run parkrun in about 22:30. However, on my own I can't break 25min, however hard I try. Five months ago, before I started C25K, I couldn't run 5K... I know I'm now faster than a lot of people who use this site, but believe me, I never used to be.

  • Hi Adam, I checked again and I had it wrong! There were some slower. I think the slowest was 42 mins.

    I just came in from doing W7R3 and I did mapmyrun for the 25mins of running. I did exactly 3km in 25mins. Not sure on that result if I should try 5km. What do you think?

  • 42 mins is my PB for 5K - and I'm proud of it!!

  • That's great! I'd love to do a 5km in 42mins but not sure I could last for 42 mins. Max so far is 25mins.

  • As long as you won't be disappointed if you don't cross the line first, I think you might as well go for it. My guess (and it is only a guess) is that if you covered 3K in 25 you'd probably finish in about 40 min or slightly less. At that sort of time, it isn't embarrassing anybody.

  • I agree with Adam - go to the Parkrun, but with no preconceptions about how you'll do. I've done two. When I did the first, I went fully expecting to come last (I didn't, but not by much - it turned out that I'd picked a small, fast Parkrun group for my first).

    I also agree that runs later in the day must be more complicated because of the food quandry.

  • Thanks Steve. My local parkrun results show the slowest person at 33mins, so I think I'll give that one a miss. My pace is ave 9min/km. I'm very slow. Might do another larger parkrun with slower people.

  • At the one I did last Saturday, they said their fastest runner did 5k in 16 minutes (!) and the slowest in 50

  • Most of the Parkruns operate a tailrunner, too - a volunteer that runs with the slowest person so they don't get left behind and feel alone. It's a really nice idea.

  • If you're thinking about Parkrun as motivation, why not have a look at their recent results first - some definitely have a higher percentage of walkers, the one I go to is pretty much entirely people who run all the way round.

    Setting oneself up to fail is perhaps a loaded term but you might find it more pleasant not to be left in the distance behind a load of speedy types.

  • Hi - thanks for your important advice!!! I've just done that and seen the slowest person last Saturday was 33 mins and I'm waaaay slower than that. I've looked at one a bit further away from home and a guy came in last with 45mins, which is about my pace, so I might do that one. I think it's a flatter course as well.

    Thanks so much for your tip though. Really helpful :)

  • I run in the mornings mainly because I'm sure if I waited I would find lots of excuses not to go later in the day. I too have been sleeping badly lately but have pushed on every other day- just doing a short run if necessary. I lay out all my clothes the night before and find once I am out of the house I feel better. And I always feel better once I've completed my run! Let us know how your evening run goes!

  • Thanks Jenny - I do 99% of my runs in the morning too, precisely for the same reason as you.. I would find excuses not to. (which has happened today!!)

    I am making excuses not to go out for a run now too (current one is waiting for rush hour to die down so there's not so many cars on the main road I have to cross twice). I'm terrible!!! I should just get out there and do it :)

  • I've got into the habit of running in the morning for two of the above reasons and one of my own.

    1) I can't get the food side right later - in the morning I get up, walk the dog, drink an actimel, and run.

    2) If I don't run in the morning, it often just doesn't happen.

    3)And finally - I love thinking "Now I've got all of the rest of the day AND all day tomorrow before I have to do it again......

    I guess I haven't quite got the right attitude yet, but I've kept it up for a whole year (as of yesterday) and I get all the wonderful health benefits anyway.

  • You have a great attitude! Thanks for sharing your tips :)

    Congratulations on running for a year - that's quite an achievement!

  • Thanks MCP - I look forward to being able to congratulate you on your graduation before too very long. You know you want to!!! :)

  • Just a thought about you not sleeping well, I'm not sure I would be worried about it, its a myth that we should sleep for 8 continuous hours. Its only a relatively new thing to say we should get 8 hours or so sleep. I say this, because in years gone by, we had little choice but to go to bed when it went dark. Yes I would try a park run, I actually did it in reverse, I did a park run then started the C25K, marshaled the park run for 3 weeks then started it again. No, you are definitely not setting yourself up to fail, if anything I find it pushed me on to do better. Good luck and keep up the good work, well done so far.

  • Thanks Hussainbolts - I think I'm going to try a parkrun this weekend. Just got to decide which one :)

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