afternoon runner

**Thank you for all the well wishes for MacKenna!  She is still doing really well, and most of the bruising is gone.  She goes back to the doctor in 6 weeks – we won’t know until then if the surgery was actually successful.    Her eyes are much straighter, but there is still some wandering/deviation.  Those muscles still need to strengthen and tighten back up.**

One month down, 2 months to go until the GO! St. Louis half marathon.  Training has been going pretty well – I am enjoying having a training plan because it is keeping me motivated to get in all my runs (sometimes it is difficult for me on the weekends when all I want to do is sleep and play with MacKenna). The only bad thing about training is that I am dealing with another injury.  I honestly haven’t been injured in a long time – I dealt with some plantar fasciitis while training for Chicago, but nothing until my ribs back in the fall, and now this…

An inflamed meniscus, possible tear.  🙁

Luckily, it doesn’t hurt when I run or walk, but anytime I kneel or sit on the floor to play with MacKenna, it kills.  Matt referred me to his chiropractor last week, and the inflamed, maybe torn meniscus (medial in my left knee for my anatomy savvy friends) was their diagnosis.  They are doing some ART on it, along with some alignment things (hips, knees, feet, pelvis) to help it heal and keep it from happening again.  A week late and it is feeling better, but I am definitely feeling all the adjustments they’re making.  My body is still trying to get used to it.  But, very thankful to play on the floor with MacKenna and not worry about being in as much pain!

Most of my training has been happening after work in the afternoon.  With as high maintenance as I am and having to leave home for work by 6:30 AM, I just don’t have the energy or desire to wake up at 4 AM to go workout for an hour in the morning.  And surprisingly, I’m OK with the afternoon workouts.

I have always been a morning runner.  I loved waking up, lacing up my shoes, and just hitting the concrete.  Running with the sun rising in the crisp cool morning was by far the best way I could start my day.  It would wake me up, clear my mind, and prepare me for my day.  My favorite days were those fall days, right around my birthday in October, where I could run in shorts and a long sleeve shirt and my lungs would hurt from the cold air the rest of the day.  I absolutely lived for that feeling!

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I never, ever thought that mindset would change.  Why would I ever want to run in the afternoon?  Especially after a long day of work when I’m already exhausted and just want to go home.  Or on the weekends when I can just get it done and out of the way in the morning and go about my day.  But, as most new mamas know, having a baby changes everything.

MacKenna would always wake up right when I was about ready to walk out the door almost every single morning, meaning I would miss my morning workout.  I was also exhausted.  My evening schedule didn’t change – I would still do work after MacKenna would go to bed and not go to bed myself until 10 or 11 PM.  That made 4 AM workouts really torturous.  It just wasn’t worth it anymore.

Now, my favorite time of day to workout is in the afternoon.  After a long hard day at work, it is the best relief I get for my stress.  I can pound the concrete a little bit to get all the school related things off my mind before I go home (most of the time).  It’s also the warmest time of the day to run, so those below freezing mornings are now perfect running weather afternoons – the time of day when I would get jealous of people running outside because I was a wimp and didn’t want to bear the cold in the morning and ran on the treadmill.  Now, I’m that person!

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Woohoo!  New racing flats!  I need a race to run so I can give them a proper review, but so far I <3 them!

I even enjoy running in the afternoons on the weekends.  Why?  Because now, instead of starting my day with a long run, I get to spend the morning playing with my baby girl when she is her happiest.  Instead of waking up with a run, I wake up to her voice and beautiful smile.  And I don’t have to worry about her waking up right at the time I want to go to the gym in the morning.  And, the afternoon means I already have a babysitter (on the weekends and during the week) and Matt can get a little more sleep on the weekends since I can take care of Kenna girl in the AM.  Everybody wins!

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Future runner.

Will I remain an afternoon runner?  Maybe.  I know I’ll be running in the morning again once the summer and fall hit (too hot in the afternoon, morning running club all summer long, and volleyball in the afternoons in the fall), but I’m loving the new time of day.  It’s definitely helped get me excited to be training and gives me something to look forward to every single day.

Are you a morning or afternoon runner?  Why does that time of day work best for your schedule?

  • Lisa

    I LOVE to run in the morning. I hit the pavement before 6:30 am with three dogs (nearly every day) and it’s such an awesome way to start my day. Like you, I can’t imagine running in the afternoon, but you give me hope that if I need to change, I can! I enjoy your blog!

    • Kristen

      Thanks! Before I had Kenna I always wanted a dog to run with!

  • It’s great that you were able to adjust and not just give up out of frustration! I’m a morning runner, just the idea of running later in the day exhausts me, but who knows; maybe that will change!

    • Kristen

      I totally understand! It took me awhile to change my mindset but I’m glad I was able to!

  • I’m glad to hear MacKenna is doing well! And I love your new racing flats–those are flashy. I am generally a morning runner, but in the winter I’ll switch to afternoon runs on really chilly days so I can run outdoors without totally freezing.
    Beth @ Running with the Sunrise recently posted..February Goals

    • Kristen

      Thanks! I’ve gotten a ton of compliments on them! They make me feel hardcore! 😉

  • While I don’t do a lot of running right now, I do like to get a workout in at home. As much as I love the idea of getting in a workout first thing in the morning, before my boys are awake, that rarely happens. I love the peace and quiet when I am the only one awake, before the sun comes up, and I use that time to drink a cup of coffee and read my daily Bible reading. It’s usually the only time of day that I get all to myself. So I typically workout in the afternoons. My little guy eats at 2, then I get a workout in (which he loves to watch… And sometimes “help”…. And it’s an added bonus that he is seeing me exercise, something that he will benefit from GREATLY… And another reason that I really do need to start running again, so I can run with him and help him clear out those lungs!!!) and then shower and change before I pick up my 6YO from school! It’s like you said, it’s all about finding what fits for you AND your family. 😉 Hope your injury gets better!!!
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    • Kristen

      Your morning sounds wonderful! That’s what I love about weekends!

  • I used to be a night time runner. In the summer I wouldn’t go out until 9 at night. Really put a damper on my social life. hah.
    I switched to morning running while I was on vacation and never looked back. It’s the only way I can run now that I have a nightowl kid.
    Aren’t you hungry when you’re running in the afternoon?
    Sarah recently posted..I’m not using that sucky pickaxe

    • Kristen

      I never understand you late night runners! But whatever works, right?!

  • I do morning workouts at CrossFit 4-5x a week and jump into my day from there, so my CrossFit Endurance runs have been in the afternoon and i’ve actually been enjoying it! when it comes to being a working mom who likes to workout and run I just have to go when I get the chance!
    Courtney @ Journey of a Dreamer recently posted..Weigh In Wednesday: Dietbet Round 2!

    • Kristen

      Yup! Whatever works! I was surprised how much I am enjoying afternoon runs! Can’t wait to hear how your training goes with CFE!

  • Meaghan Kuczarski

    I run in the mornings on the weekends because I run with a group. During the week I run in the afternoon on my lunch breaks. I have to leave for work by 6am to get to work by 7:30am. Like you, I dont have the desire to get up at 4 something! I love the fact that you work — I can relate to your blog more than others. A lot of bloggers refer to themselves as “housewives” – no wonder they can run 50-6o miles a week! 🙂

    • Kristen

      I’m so glad you can relate. It’s frustrating for me at times when most of my blog friends are SAHMs. It really is hard to find that time. I wish I could run 50 miles a week but my family is so much more important. Must be nice, huh?!

  • Jessica Goodman

    I run in the evenings because I am not a morning person, have to get my daughter ready for school and go to work. Plus running in the evening is a good stress reducer.

  • I am an afternoon runner! It is such a stress reliever for me. Sometimes I wish I could be a morning runner but it is so hard for me to get up so early and go straight into a run- and the cold scares me! I don’t know if this will change in the future, but for now I will stick with the afternoons!
    TheTinyRunner recently posted..Learning to do it RIGHT