Friday, February 24, 2012's 4:00am

I'm not going to lie. I HATE getting up at 4am to run. Why do it then you ask? Great question! I'm still looking for the answer myself!

Actually, I am a morning person and if it doesn't get done first thing in the morning, then it doesn't get done! That does not make it any easier when the alarm goes off at 4am or even worse, when I roll over and watch the clock turn from 3:59 to 4:00 and then hear the alarm go off. EVERY single morning is a mental battle to get up and motivate or inspire myself to run......alone! Every single morning is a battle of self talk telling myself that I have to run, that I am letting myself down by going back to sleep or worse that I might be letting someone else down who sees me run and decides they can too! The other battle is whether to head into the basement to jump on the dreaded treadmill, also known as "the road to nowhere" or to walk out my front door and do a scenic 1 mile loop in my neighborhood over, and over and over again! My last option is to hop in the car and head into the neighboring town of New Cumberland which gives me more scenery and with longer runs allows me to run across the Susquehanna River and into Harrisburg.

Once the alarm goes off, I know that I have a 10 minute window of time to get up, get dressed to run and to either be out the door or on the treadmill. If I allow myself any more then 10 minutes then there is a strong possibility that I've either gone back to bed or talked myself out of running.

This is the same battle that I go through each and every morning. Some mornings are easier then others but it is still a challenge to get moving. I've developed some routines that have allowed me to be efficient in the morning and not waste time. I lay my running clothes and shoes out ahead of time. No searching for what to wear, it's all been decided already. In my kitchen I have my full belt and full bottles already laid out. I also lay out my Garmin, Road ID, iPod, running cap, headlamp, reflective gear and any other items that I will need to successfully get my run in. I have my routine down to a science so that I can be up and be ready to roll in 10 minutes. If I am successful, I am walking out the door at roughly 4:10,

I have run a variety of distances during my morning work week runs. My average run is 5 miles but I've run as much as a half marathon as a training run before heading into work.

After I complete my run I feel great and am full of self satisfaction in knowing that I was up and exercising before most people have even gotten up! This feeling takes me through my work day as I reflect back with pride that my will to succeed was stronger then my will to take the shortcut and quit on myself for the day.

Another good trick is to post the weeks training plan on the fridge so you are forced to walk by it and guilt yourself into running!

For those of you that struggle to get started and get moving every morning, you are not alone!

Well it's now 9pm. Bedtime. I have a mental battle to wage with myself in 7 hours! Goodnight!


  1. I'll be right there with you next week. Due to spring track starting up, I'll be getting up around the same time every Monday morning. Actually glad I have to work late on Wednesdays now!

  2. I don't know how I feel about this! I was hoping that you were going to say that eventually you got used to it and now you don't really mind the early wake-up call. But I kind of feel better to hear that I'm not the only one who struggles with this.

    I just bought a treadmill and I really want to get into the habit of three weekday runs. I'm struggling to do it because I don't want to get up in the morning and I won't run outside in the dark. And, as you said, if it doesn't happen in the AM it doesn't happen. Daylight savings is coming so I'm really hoping that I can get one AM run in per week and two evening runs and be happy.

    I'm really impressed with your ability to stick with it.

  3. I've always admired the way you wake up so early to get your runs Brad. For me it's an inspiration. When I feel like don't waking up to get my run I just read your training posts and that motivates me to go out.