Running at midnight might lack reputation, but when equipped with appropriate gear suitable for running in the dark, it is a splendid experience. All you need is to take necessary caution to avoid unforeseen incidents, and you are good to go. Most night runners use the exercise for meditation by sweating off the day’s obstructions.
Why Run At Midnight?
Quite many runners prefer night runs over morning and daytime running due to rigid schedules in the morning and during the day. Eating habits also play a more significant role in influencing running at midnight. Others find the relaxed night atmosphere appealing as it offers an opportunity to cover greater distances effortlessly. Besides temptations from the calm of the night, research indicates that night running has enhanced performance and health benefits compared to exercising in the morning or daytime.
Running at midnight has its advantages and drawbacks. Keep reading this page, and you will discover them. We will also discuss safety tips to keep in mind when lacing your running shoes and venturing into running in the wee hours of midnight.
Benefits Of Running At Midnight
1. It Promotes Better Sleeping
There is a notion in most people that running and exercising at midnight might negatively affect sleeping patterns. This is far from the truth. The South Carolina University conducted a study and found out that 97 percent of people who engage in high-intensity exercise at night sleep better than when they do the same activity during the daytime.
The University of Carolina also conducted research that found out that people tend to drift off into a relaxing and deep sleep as early as 30 minutes after the workout when engaging in a night exercise.
You might be asking yourself how running at midnight promotes better sleeping. It is important to note that running has a way of reducing anxiety, and it calms you down. Muscle tension and blood pressure are eased whenever you run, leaving you with a relaxed feeling that enhances better sleeping.
2. It Promotes Effortless And Faster Running.
It was found out in London University that a group of marathoners had the consistency of running more than a minute faster over a 10- kilometer stretch at midnight compared to day-time. A participant in the marathon attested that even though the run was faster, it demanded less effort than running during the day.
The real reason running at night is effortless is unknown, but your guess is as good as mine. At midnight temperatures are lower as compared to daytime. So dehydration is kept minimal and the calm surrounding experienced at night helps cool your body down as you increase your running speed.
3. Running Consistency
Midnight running provides an opportunity to run with less or no interruptions at all. Unlike morning runs where you require to be awoken by the alarm, midnight runs find you already awake. The only thing to do is shoving aside mails and texts, lace up your running shoes and take the trail.
A serious runner prioritizes runs. So if you prioritize your midnight runs, you will stick to a consistent running pattern that enhances your performance. Chances of sabotaging midnight runs are minimal as no schedules will disrupt you unless they are emergencies. Whether you are training or a rookie marathoner, running consistency is the key to better performance.
4. It Sharpens Senses And Reflexes
Running at midnight doesn’t afford you the luxury of natural right that you enjoy during morning or day runs. Sharpening your senses and reflexes is the only viable option relevant to keeping you safe during your runs.
During midnight running, you employ proprioceptive skills to respond to arising situations. Proprioceptive skills are situations whereby you feel your feet hitting the ground and react automatically to the feeling. In other words, you are running on autopilot hence the effectiveness of the exercise.
5. Getting Rid Of Stress And Depression
If you had a bad day in the office, the midnight run will relieve you of all the day’s stresses and set you free. Everything is behind you as you concentrate on accomplishing your running goal—a run in the dark releases feel-good endorphins. The endorphins soot your mind as you sweat out the day’s misfortunes. Additionally, running at midnight relieves you from the stresses associated with morning and day running.
Are you depressed? Midnight running gets you rid of depression since it acts as a form of meditation. When on your run, there is nothing else on your way to distract your attention. Your sole focus is on the run and the rhythm of your breath.
Midnight running drawbacks are few, and they are associated with your safety. To run at night successfully, you must take note of the safety concerns to keep harm at bay. So to remedy midnight running drawbacks, let us discuss the relevant safety tips.
Midnight Running Safety Tips
One downside of midnight running is injuries to your body. Bearing in mind that visibility at night is not good, invest in a running headlamp. The lamp enables you to see holes, ice, or road bumps and navigate around them.
It is important to scout your running route during the daytime and familiarize yourself with the terrain. Besides the headlamp, reflective bands are also essential when running at night as they make you visible to motorists and other runners.
2. Run In Groups
Nights are prone to insecurity caused by muggers or rogue wild animals. Your safety comes first. When running in groups, there are fewer chances of attacks from muggers or even wild animals. But if you perform your night runs alone, inform your friends about your running route. You can also do yourself a favor by carrying your phone and investing in a tracking device like Find My Friends.
3. Observe Road Rules
Even though there is less traffic at midnight, observe all road rules to avoid accidents.
You are at liberty to choose the right time for you to run. Keenly evaluate the pros and cons of midnight running and make an informed choice of the appropriate time to engage in the exercise.