Late Night Long Run

Sometimes, life gets in the way of your plans.


In a perfect world, I would follow a perfect training schedule, with 10% weekly mileage increase, long runs on the same day of the week, a perfect balance of speed work, long runs, etc. etc… all the things you are “supposed” to do according to the books. My life is far from perfect, and so is my training schedule.


Like many other runners, my work schedule changes each day, and I have to plan my running times around when I am not working! I’m leaving for BFF Debbie’s wedding in New Jersey on Friday morning, before 8:00am, and won’t be back until Monday afternoon. That leaves NO time for a long run during the weekend!


I’m training for the Miracle Miles 15k, and have only a few weeks to work up to 9.3 miles. On the way home from work, I debated when I should squeeze a long run in. My options were:

  • skip the run altogether (lame)
  • run tonight
  • run Thursday morning (have to wake up way early, I work 8am-7pm, and still have to pack for NJ)
  • run when I get home on Monday night (and possibly risk feeling tired from an epic weekend)


I decided to go with tonight. Why wait?


I got home around 5:50pm. It was my turn to make dinner for my second family, and was determined to get it done and out the door by 7:00pm. Now THAT, my friends, is ambitious. 😉


My goal for the night was to “make brown rice taste good.” They have only had it once before and thought it was disgusting and bland. I had no problem coming up with something to make for them!


I made chicken stir fry, with red peppers, broccoli, and carrots. I boiled veggie broth instead of water to add flavor to the otherwise bland brown rice.




I set the table, and waited for everyone to try their dinner. The clock was ticking, and it was already 6:42 when we sat down. It took extra long because I haven’t ever cooked in their kitchen, and had to search for everything.




According to the girls, it was a success! Mission accomplished. I waited 15 minutes or so, and headed upstairs to change.




By the time I laced up my shoes and got out the door, it was 7:18pm. The sun sets here at about 7:45pm, so I knew there was no way I was going to squeeze in the 8.0 miler I had planned before dark.


I ran about 4.5 before the darkness finally set in. Luckily, they live on a well lit-street, so I was able to finish up the run on their road. The road is only 0.25 miles long, so I literally ran up, and down the street. Up. Down. Up. Down. Le sigh.


It got sooooo boring, that I finally stopped after 7.0 miles. My legs felt great, but I was kind of freaked out running in the dark. I kept hearing "weird noises” and dog barks. I’m a wimp, but at least I’m cautious. I know that I’m not invincible.




Distance:  7.0 miles

Total Time:  1:11:52

Average Pace:  10:16 min/mile


  • Mile 1:  10:31
  • Mile 2:  10:16
  • Mile 3:  10:15
  • Mile 4:  10:30
  • Mile 5:  10:14
  • Mile 6:  10:08
  • Mile 7:  9:57 (under 10! yay!)


After my run, I came home to a lovely glass of chocolate milk. The perfect recovery drink, in my opinion. 😀




So I didn’t get in the 8.0 miles that I wanted to, but there is always next week. I felt good about tonight’s run, and much stronger than I did on Saturday’s 7.0 miler. Progress!


(Side Note: I have only ran once since Saturday, an easy 2.5 mile last night)


I kind of liked doing my long run at the end of the day. I feel less bad about coming home and lounging around in pajamas for the next few hours, if it’s what I’d be doing anyway.


Do you prefer to do your long runs (or long workouts) in the morning or at night? What are your reasons? Do you do them on the weekends, or another day of the week?


❤ MegaNerd


38 Responses

  1. I do my long runs on Sundays. The trails and roads are quiet and it just makes a peaceful setting to run in.

    I can also only run in the mornings. By time the evening comes I’m too wiped out from the day’s activities to give running my full attention and effort.

  2. I’ve never done a long run during the week. The latest I’ve done a long run is 5:30pm. It’s so hard to reserve energy through out the day. Good job I don’t think I could do it. I would have been scared to run in the dark alone too.

  3. Good work!! I’ve never done a long run at night. In fact, I’ve never done a run at night–mostly because I live in the city and that would be SCARY!

    As for the long runs, I usually do those during the week. However, when training for my last half, I did a couple of 6-7 miles during the week and I’d always do those in the late afternoon/early evenings. I wish I could be more of a morning bird, but I just can’t. I like my sleep too much! 🙂

  4. Nice work! I find that running after dinner is tough on the tummy, but you did great. And do whatever you can to get in that mileage! Sometimes I do my miles before work, on the lunch hour or after work. It is hard when you’re out of town or your schedule is changing so frequently.

  5. Nice job! I get freaked out at night too. I always have to close all my windows no matter how hot it is because I hate hearing weird noises.

  6. I am definitely an evening runner…but not in the dark. I wish I could get into the routine of exercising before work, but I am just not a morning person. However, I do my long runs on Sunday mornings. That is when my running group meets, and there is no way I would get my booty out of bed that early if it weren’t for them!

  7. Awesome dinner+ awesome run =? Awesome night!!

  8. I run in the afternoon. I don’t like waking up early or running in the dark, haha. So that’s when I make time for it. 🙂

  9. I love running at night. It totally depends where you live though and there are some places I just wouldn’t want to be running at night.
    Running up and back the same little stretch takes some real dedication. I get bored (or give my brain an excuse to want to quit) so easily and I can barely run the same course twice without getting sick of it.

  10. oh man. i did a ridiculous run like that up and down the streets around my block ib the winter when it was -15 and my camelbak was at risk of freezing. 9 miles. soooooooooo boring!

    good for you for getting out!

  11. WAy to go girl! Running in the dark still scares me and I always opt out and use the treadmill instead.

  12. Due to a 2 hour commute (one way), I have no choice but to run in the evenings and also when it’s dark in the winter. I try to find well-lit routes and put my headlight on in the winter. Therefore, long runs are for the weekends. I simply don’t have a choice. Great, that you still went out!

  13. Great job on the long run! I run my long runs in the morning on Saturdays… however, I feel like EVERY run is sort of long now that I’m at the peak of Marathon training! I mean, who runs 9 miles on a Monday?! Uhhh.

  14. I run in the mornings before it gets too hot. I also do my long runs on the weekends because it’s the only time my sister and I can run together. It makes the time (and miles) go by faster when we’re chatting while running!

  15. Great job fitting in the run! I usually do weekday workouts after work but before dinner, and long runs on the weekend whenever I can fit them in!

  16. My bf had similar complaints about brown rice, I managed to make him love it recently by turning it into cilantro-lime rice.

    As for runs, I love running after work for some reason… like you said it’s a good excuse to justify sitting on the couch afterwards. I love me some tv so tv-time is my post-run reward. Mind you, I’m just completing week 5 of C25K so I can’t really say anything about long runs yet!

  17. I prefer my long runs to be in the morning on either a saturday or a sunday. It clears my mind and starts the day off right plus I feel I can relax the rest of the day.

    Does the original version of the garmin get in your way because of its size?

    I want to get a garmin but don’t want to spend the extra few hundred on the smaller one yet I am worried the regular will be to big.

  18. I usually do my long runs on the weekend in the morning. I am a morning person and get too tired at night to do them!

  19. I actually like most of my runs in the evening. I have always run evenings due to my work schedule and actually have a harder time on weekend morning runs. odd, i know! 😉

  20. I have never done a long run at night, although I did a 9-miler once in the late afternoon and recall that it wasn’t much fun. I start student teaching on Tuesday and have a feeling I’ll have to incorporate some after-school long runs, because there’s no way I’m getting up any earlier that I have to to do them in the morning!

  21. Simply Inspiring ❤

  22. Great job girl!! I am definitely a morning runner. It’s usually not hard for me to get up at the crack of dawn! Plus, I always have tummy issues on my evening runs. Not really sure why but it just never works out for me!! I love chocolate milk as a recovery drink also!!

  23. Wow! You are bad ass running that long in the dark just up and down the street. I would have quit long before you. I def like my long runs to be in the morning. The later the day gets the easier I find it is for me to talk myself out of doing them. The only workouts I seem to be able to do at night are strength workouts or some class at the gym.

  24. I actually love to run in the dark – I find it easier to zone out, which helps me work things out in my mind and decrease stress. When I was training for my first half-marathon it was summer in South Carolina and the only times that were cool enough was when it was dark. I routinely ran around the neighborhood from 8-10pm and I loved it. Most of my friends thought I was nuts, but there were plenty of streetlights, we had several friends living in different areas of our neighborhood and I felt completely safe. There were also a TON of cops that lived in our neighborhood and I made note of where all their houses were, just in case. 🙂

  25. You’re going to do great! I know when I tend to overthink what I am capable of running, I don’t do as well. Just think if you got 7, you got 9.3!

  26. I have been doing my long runs during the week and on the weekends but always in the morning. When training for a shorter distance (half marathon training right now), I usually stick to lunch time runs and almost always during the week. I’m getting pretty used to my weekend runs though so I might stick to them a little after the half is over.

  27. I like to workout in the morning but you do what you have to do to get your workouts in!

  28. Way to go on hitting that run! I like doing runs later than sooner since for whatever reason I can’t ever seem to fully warm up in the morning.

  29. I like to do my long runs on Sunday mornings. In the summer when it’s hot I force myself to get up early and get it done (there’s just no other option) and during the cooler months, I’ll wait until around 10 or 11 to go. I don’t have a problem running at night if I have someone with me, but in the summer it’s just too hot to run at night (unless, of course, thre’s no other option like in your case) Great job getting out there and doing it!!

  30. In the morning! I ran last night after dark and it’s creepy… for some reason running in the dark BEFORE the sun comes up isn’t scary, but after it goes down that’s spooky! Maybe because the ‘bad guys’ are asleep at 5am? 🙂

  31. I do my long runs on the weekends early in the morning. This is my favorite time. Its my first priority and there are hardly any cars out there. Night time or afternoons are a major struggle. I’m just so exhausted from work and taking care of the family. Great job on your run!

  32. Good job being disciplined to do that!
    My work schedule is weird and changes a lot. Mostly I’ll do my long runs on the weekend. But if I have a Monday off or go in late or get out early, sometimes I’ll do the long run on Monday, or Friday, etc. You’re right, sometimes life gets in the way!

  33. Normally I run in the mornings, though sometimes I have enough energy to run in the evening, I’ve never run in the dark before though!

  34. Hey Megan! I just came across your blog, and just wanted to say I love your subtitle. It’s really witty!

    Also, I agree that running in the dark can get scary!! When I run in the dark, which is rare, I change itinerary and stick to streets where there’s always people walking and stuff 😉

  35. […] 7.0 miler Late Night Long Run on 9/1/10 […]

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