Pekoe was sprawled out across my legs. My pillow seemed particularly fluffy. My early morning dreams particularly interesting. At 6:45, I got up anyway. Put on my running clothes. Tied on my running shoes (despite reading this article yesterday). Pulled my hair into ridiculous pigtails and held back my bangs with a headband. And went running.
Yesterday, I managed to do this at 7. This morning, 6:45. My goal is 6:30 tomorrow. And then work my way back down Thursday and Friday. Just for fun. Also, more sleep. So, I had a good half hour jog this morning. Getting home felt good. Having time for a decent breakfast felt good. Making a healthy lunch felt good.
I have some observations.
1. Running in the morning feels weird. There’s something about rolling out of bed and into your running clothes that’s just odd. I expect it has something to do with forcing yourself from the lowest point of rest (sleeping) to a high point of activity (running) in a matter of minutes. My lungs aren’t ready to work that hard after 8 hours of slow deep breathing. My legs feel fully rested and ready to go, but just want to drag a little. There’s no bounce. No ease of movement or breath.
At the same time (and this is why it’s weird), it feels like I have boundless energy. While my legs don’t want to go, they can go, and they can go for a long time. My breathing whines at the early start, but everything feels crisp, the fog of sleep falls away pretty quickly and my brain starts working a lot faster than mornings I lie in bed too long.
2. Early risers are generally pretty friendly. Granted, I didn’t meet too many because it was 6:45. But there were a couple people walking their dogs, another runner, my neighbour out with her little boy who has just started to walk this summer. I didn’t pass a single person without a few words. I got a “Good morning” from everyone I met. A “Sorry” from a couple older women as they stepped off the sidewalk for being in my way, right as I said sorry for stealing their sidewalk.
Yesterday, there were two robins making a fuss overhead as I ran past. An older man who had just passed under the same tree (at a slower pace), pointed out a baby bird to me they were protecting.
Guaranteed, running at 5:00 in the evening, I’d pass more people and hardly even make eye contact with anyone.
3. It takes time to be healthy. You would think this would be a no-brainer. But I think it’s in this where I’ve been falling short. Instead of exercising, I need to make a quick run to the mall. I made plans to meet a friend after work. I’m tired and want to stay in bed.
But it’s not just exercising that takes time. You know that eating right thing? It doesn’t work if there isn’t time to go to the grocery store to find the best grapes, the (hopefully) crunchiest apples, the lettuce that looks the least wilted. I need time to read labels and compare granola bars and cereals.
And then, there’s the time needed to put it all together. Two minutes is not enough time to put together a good healthy lunch. 15 minutes is not really enough time to make a healthy dinner. (Of course, leftovers don’t count. Also, I suppose if I wanted to eat salad or sandwiches or snacky food all the time I could get away with 15 minutes. But that’s only if I’m using the salad in the bag and not adding anything that requires chopping. Or meat. And if you know me at all, you’ll know salad is not my most favourite thing in the world.)
This morning, I took 20 minutes to put together a balanced lunch. A tuna sandwich with almost as much celery as tuna, calorie-wise Miracle Whip, and mustard on rye bread. A bunch of grapes. Very berry low fat Yoptimal (not my favourite flavour, but as far as low fat goes, the texture’s not bad). Celery sticks and cucumber. 20 minutes for that.
Anyway, as far as running goes, the morning seems to be a good time. It’s time I wouldn’t use otherwise for anything other than sleeping (which many see as a waste of time anyway).
We’ll see how the rest of the week goes.