Sunday, October 12, 2014

4:23 PM
So towards the end of last year I got kind of bored of working out. I remember staring at my workout bag, totally unmotivated at the end of a long day and wishing there was a new and different kind of workout that I could realistically do besides my standard running/climbing or biking/climbing. With very little extra time on my hands I figured that I would have to do something drastically different if I really did want some new and exciting workouts.  And so 2014 became the year of the Fitness Project.

Ten months in I am almost two weeks late in even announcing what my focus for this month is. All I can say is, life happens and so here we are.

While to date I have focused each month on a different kind of workout, this month I am focusing on time of day. In other words, in a desperate effort to gain some control back over the craziness of my life and to ensure that I least get some form of work out in, I am setting my alarm for 5:30 AM several days a week, dragging my body out of bed, and shuffling downstairs to the quiet darkness of my garage to bike, do yoga, lift weights or otherwise squeeze in 30-45 minutes before my son wakes up. I haven't done an early morning run yet, but that is coming.

My husband absolutely freaking hates this by the way.

This is despite the fact that I have told him all the many reasons experts say that morning workouts are better for you - better mood, revved up metabolism, deeper sleep, more energy, more consistency, fewer scheduling conflicts. I could go on.

He doesn't care. All he notices is the lack of sleep.

To be honest, I do feel a little weird creeping around the house in the pre-dawn darkness in order to get what is admittedly a half-hearted work out in.  However, it does feel much better to close out my day knowing that I did something, instead of having just worked, looked after small children, drunk wine, worked some more, and then collapsed into bed exhausted.

So far what I have found to be helpful in making the morning workout thing doable is the following:

1. Making a plan. When I go to bed I already know what time I am going to get up and what I am going to do. In the morning no arguing with myself is allowed.

2. Getting ready the night before. My clothes and shoes are laid out; the coffee is prepped; my contact stuff and toothbrush are organized in the bathroom farthest from the lightest sleeper (aka the husband).

3. Being realistic.  My morning workouts do not consist of 10 mile runs. I do not get in a car to drive somewhere. Rather they are 30 minute strength sessions; or 30 minutes running, elliptical-ling or on the spin bike; or the yoga I can't otherwise seem too fit in. And then the rest of the morning is dedicated to getting myself and the two kids ready and out the door by 7:45 AM - WHICH IS NO SMALL FEAT, THANK YOU.

The most successful people I know and read about credit part of their success to the discipline of early morning exercise.  While my aspirations are not of greatness, I do have a strong desire to maintain my fitness despite the constant time and life pressures I am facing at the moment. Shoehorning my workouts into the early daylight hours presents a small sliver of possibility, assuming my marriage can withstand it.

To learn more about my Fitness Project, please contact me at,, or connect with me on Facebook.


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