ARE YOU A BREAKFAST, LUNCH OR DINNER RUNNER?

Continuing his series of articles for The Corporate Cup, running coach Chris Taylor considers why you might prefer to run in the morning, afternoon or evening.

Will running at different times of the day affect your performance? There is some science to support the idea that running performance is better later in the day.

Early in the morning body temperature and lung function are at their lowest and they gradually increase during the day. Studies have shown that people perform better with higher body temperatures. So from the science side it would make sense to say that everyone should run later in the day.

But ….

Ever had a call from someone from work at 6 in the morning? Well maybe you have but probably not that frequently. Contrast that with how many times you’ve had a call just as you’re walking out of the office in the afternoon. Plan to run later in the day and you stand a much higher chance of getting caught up at work and not making it out at all.

Eating is another consideration. It’s much easier to run if you aren’t carrying around a belly full of food. You might be able to delay breakfast until after your morning run but by late afternoon you’ll probably have eaten something substantial during the day which can adversely affect performance.

The weather is another variable that works against a later run. If you talk to a hang glider pilot you’ll find that early mornings are one of their favourite times to be up in the air because it’s generally calmer. That’s true on the Corporate Cup City circuits as well. Often it’s calm early then the wind picks up from mid-morning especially around the open sections of the Torrens lake.

And some of it comes down to pure personal preference. If you’re a morning person then you’ll probably prefer to run mornings. If you struggle to get yourself out of bed at all it’s probably better for you to run at lunchtime or early evening.

But if you are a late riser, you’ll find that an early morning run will wake you up and make you much more alert (possibly more productive?) than normal. That might be because exercise helps to get the blood flowing and boost your body temperature. And you might also find that being half asleep will help you overcome your psychological resistance to exercise, in other words you just do it without too much thought. Drag yourself out of bed and give it a go!

Whatever your ‘time-of-day” preference we’ve got you covered at the Corporate Cup. The City location is now open from 6am until 6pm. And if you’re in one of the regions, Somerton Park, Mawson Lakes or Newport Quays we have introduced extended hours that start at 6:00am too.

Chris can be contacted on 0400 270 929 or at chris@runningdomain.com.au. Check out his web site here