11 Oct Beyond Weight Loss: 5 Benefits of Morning Running
When you’re struggling to get out of bed early, the benefits of morning running may not be immediately apparent. The approach of marathon season has brought an increase in the number of runners pounding the pavements each morning.
And with good reason! Whilst walking, jogging and running are a great aid to weight loss alongside a healthy balanced diet, there are more benefits of morning running than we perhaps realise . . .
1. Mood Boost
Performing any kind of exercise causes our bodies to release feel-good hormones called endorphins. These endorphins can create feelings of euphoria, also known as a” runner’s high”. Not only does this make us want to go running more regularly, but also provides us with a positive and energised outlook on the day.
2. Improve sleep
Another of the benefits of morning running is that it increases our exposure to natural light. Studies have shown that getting outside before a day at the office or school can help regulate our circadian rhythm, which helps make it easier to fall asleep at night. In turn, people who regularly sleep six to eight hours each night are more likely to achieve weight loss than those who sleep less than six hours each night.
3. Reduce Stress
Getting outside each morning for a run is a great opportunity to practice being aware of our bodies, minds and feelings. This can help create feelings of calm. Had a stressful few days or have a busy day up ahead? Going for a run can be a great way to clear our heads, ready to start the day.
4. Increase commitment to physical activity
It can be so easy to talk ourselves out of doing physical activity. Especially when we are tired after a long day and the last thing we fancy is going to the gym. By going for a run in the morning we can tick our physical activity boxes as done for the day. That leaves the evenings free to relax with family and friends!
5. It’s convenient and free!
It can be a struggle to find classes at the gym that fit in with our busy schedules. However, the outside is available to use whenever we fancy, meaning running can be done at any time of the day to fit around the other commitments in our lives. Not only that, running only requires a pair of trainers, saving us money on our gym membership.
We don’t all have to be experienced runners to feel the additional benefits of morning running. Whether it’s a Park Run or a few brisk walks round the block, getting accustomed to early morning activity is a great way to start taking control of our overall health.
If you’ve never tried running before and are looking for an easy way to get started, why not give the NHS Choices Couch to 5k plan a go? Our blogger Linda tried it last year with great success. Read all about her experience here.
Looking for some extra support? Visit our Services Page to find out more about how we can support your weight loss with one of our free programmes.