I'm going to do a Friday Five because I like the sound of it.
Five Reasons Why I Love Running in the Morning
(And if this inspires you to run in the AM then yay for that, too!)
1. I don't feel like I am taking any time away from my family!
This is so the number one reason why I haul my butt out of bed at 5:30AM. The boys are still sleeping that early, Hubs is still sleeping so I don't feel like I'm missing out on time with them. Sure, I could snuggle with Hubs but since he woke me up this morning at 6:00AM by SNORING INTO MY FACE I think the snuggle morning time might be a bit overrated. Plus, when I run in the mornings my evenings are wide open for play time, meal prep time, laundry time, cleaning time, etc.
2. My metabolism is rocking for the rest of the day.
This can be good or bad depending on my access to healthy foods. Since running usually inspires me to be more healthy it often ends up more of a good thing. I eat right after I get home from my run, usually an English muffin with almond butter or a turkey sandwich (yep, I believe in eating whatever I want for meals, not just breakfast food) and some string cheese. By mid-morning I am ready to EAT EVERYTHING so I have another string cheese or hard boiled egg or oatmeal. Eating small, healthy, high in protein snacks keeps me full longer and less likely to bad snack later in the day.
3. The only other people around outside are pretty much other runners or bikers.
I live in an excellent area. The subdivision I run through is relatively small population wise, but large distance wise. Which means I can get my miles in running through the subs and stay away from busy roads. Plus, even if I had to run on busy roads there just aren't that many people driving on them that early. As for other people around, it is a sad fact that as a female out by herself in the dark, there is a sense of being unsafe. Our streets are well lit. I can see and hear (I don't wear headphones) people approaching me. On top of that, I don't have to avoid people mowing their lawns or kids on bikes or people with strollers. Not that there is anything wrong with any of these people, but it's nice to not have them around while I am in the zone.
4. It's nice prep for races.
Most of the races I have been involved in have started early in the morning. When I used to run at night, this was waaaay before having kids, I had a hard time adjusting to the early morning race. It would take me a mile or two to wake up. Now I'm used to it. I know what I can eat before a race. I know what I can drink. And it's just like a normal run for me.
5. It's me time.
I have struggled with my identity, especially after birth. I feel like a part of society puts a lot of pressure on moms to make them act like super women, like they can work forty hour weeks, cook meals, clean the house, do laundry and hang out with the kids. I feel like moms are SUPPOSED to be stressed and that if you aren't stressed you're doing it wrong. Let me rephrase, I feel like society tries to make us feel that way. The thing is, I don't feel stressed as a mom, or no more stressed than I did before being a mom. Does this mean I'm doing it wrong? Now I don't have a high stress career. I leave work at the office. I used to have a job like that, that followed me home and drove me insane. I did that for eight years and NEVER AGAIN.
Anyway, I miss my guys when I am at work but I know they are in good hands with their Nana or their dad. I enjoy the time I have with them as much as I can but also, they can get on my nerves WHICH IS COMPLETELY NORMAL. Being a parent is not all moonbeams and rainbows. It's ok to want to poke your eye out. It's ok to hide in the bathroom with your iPad. I have a friend who I feel kinda thrives on talking about how stressed out she is. Sometimes I just want to shake her and be all "you are doing it to yourself! Let it go!"
I'm running off on a tangent here. What it comes down to is when I lace up my shoes at the buttcrack of dawn the only thing I'm thinking about is me. I let all my doubts and worries float away and listen to my breath and the birds singing and the wind. I enjoy the silence and the peace and try to be as zen as possible. And I don't feel guilty about it. Because Mamas need to take care of themselves before they can take care of their kiddos.