Fitting your runs in around the school day

We all know that working in a school isn’t; 9am-3:30pm job done, out the door home and free. 

Teachers take so much work home and sometimes fitting in a social life, let alone physical activity can seem like a distant dream. 

Below we are going to have a quick look at ways we can try and fit running into our days. (For the purpose of this blog, we will be saying runs, but this can be substituted with any activity you choose!)

Coffee & Go!

The Early Morning Run

Not for everyone, but it can really set you up for the day. Waking up 30 minutes early to get out and take in the day whilst most are still in bed takes a lot of dedication but there are a few simple things you can do that make it easier:

  • Go to bed 30 minutes earlier
  • Leave all your running kit next to your bed
  • You can even go extra and sleep in your running gear…

This might not be an every day run, but start small, try it once or twice a week and see how you get on, hopefully the high you get after will make up for the low you feel when your 5 or 6am alarm goes off. Also you get to feel like a boss when you get to school and you know you have already smashed out a 5k run!

The Commute

So this one really depends on how far you live from work, and also how much you need to carry, but if it works for you it really makes sense. You need to make this journey every day anyway, so why not combine it with some of your training. (This is one that does work a lot better if you can ride your bike) 

A few tips on this one are:

  • Run in on PE days, that way you can change into sports clothes when you arrive rather than your smarts.
  • Arrange for a colleague to drop your things in for you if you live nearby or be strict and leave all your work at school when you know you will be running the following day.
  • Car share with a colleague so you can just run into school, or just run home. You can even just run part of the commute and get collected or dropped off on route.
  • Convince a colleague to run/cycle with you and turn your run/ride into a social catch up, you will also be more likely to commit as you don’t want to let each other down.
  • Plan ahead and bring your lunch/change of clothes in the day before so you don’t need to carry it on your run.

The Lunch Run

How do you spend your lunchtimes? Is there a day that is quieter than others, maybe your PPA day. Could you possibly fit in a short 20 minute run during your lunch? Much like the commute this does have factors to consider such as, can you change or shower after? But again if you can tie this in with a PE day and not have to get into your smart clothes for the remainder of the day this could work. Plus you get to explore places around your work that you might not have seen before. You never know, you might even influence a few other staff members into joining you. 


  • If your school has shower facilities you’re good to go.
  • Leave a towel, shower gel ect and change of clothes at work so you can have a ‘bird bath’ after your run.

The After School Run

Running straight after school could be your best bet, get your run complete before you get home and come up with an excuse as to why you can’t get out. If you have one or two days that you don’t have meetings straight after work then bring your running gear in the car, go for your run around school then drive straight home. This way by the time your home your run is done and you can chill out, spend time with your family or do more work if you really need to…

A tip for this one:

  • Pull some colleagues in and create a little after school run club, this could work well if you’re all following a programme such as Couch to 5k.
  • Go the extra mile and book an event together so you all have a common goal to work towards.
“Pull some colleagues in and create a little after school run club”

The Evening run

The school day is over, you have just got in from work, before you sit down quickly go and grab your running gear and head straight out. Don’t give yourself a chance to sit down, because we all know how hard it is to get up once that has happened. Get your run complete before it’s time to begin your evening routine. 

Top tips:

  • Change into your run gear at work, so when you get in you can just head straight out.
  • Make a phone call during your run and check in with someone you haven’t spoken to for a while, or even have a virtual run date with someone, you would be amazed how quickly the time goes when you’re having a chat at the same time.

The Night Run

Everything complete, children in bed, dinners has been eaten, time to put your feet up… or time to now go for your run? We are all different and can find motivation and energy at different times so going out later in the evening might be what works for you. The roads are quieter, if it’s the winter it’s going to be colder and darker, which can have its own issues but in the summer it’s still light and cooler than running in the day.

Tips :

  • Your not going to be worrying about getting back to do another job so your head is clear
  • You will get in and have used up your last bits of energy to ensure you get a good and well deserved sleep
  • Make sure you have a good set of lights if you’re going out in the evening during winter and use routes you know well. Now is not the time to go exploring… 

So there you go, it sounds so easy when it’s written down like that, so see if you can make any of these run times work for you. 

Final top tip: put these runs in your diary, commit to them like any other lesson or meeting, we are much more likely to achieve our goals when they are written down!

If you work in a school in any capacity, and enjoy a run or are looking to get into running, then join our Strava group and log your miles to the clubs weekly totals:

And follow @TeachersRunClub on Twitter to join the school staff running community!

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