Wake up call

Over the years I’ve definitely transitioned into an early riser. There once was a time when I would sleep in until 11am. Now I’m up  at 5am. Why such a ridiculous hour? Let’s face it – I’m a morning person. I’ve often done an hour long workout, ate breakfast, had a couple cups of coffee, read a chapter in my book, checked my email, and walked 30 minutes to work all before 8am. Not bad.

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Is it difficult for me to get out of bed at 5am? Some days, hell yeah. Some days, no problem. The key is to make it a ROUTINE. Like any new routine, it’s difficult at first. You continue to hit snooze until it’s too late to workout. You tell yourself that you’ll go for your run after work. You check the temperature and tell yourself it’s too cold or too dark. You make up a million excuses. Are these excuses going to get you that BQ time? No. Are these excuses going to make you stronger? No. Are these excuses going to make you feel better? No. But once you get through the first, second, third week you’re laughing (along with getting stronger and feeling better).

I don’t know about you, but if I miss my morning workout I dwell on it ALL DAY LONG. It’s like a nagging voice in the back of my head that doesn’t turn off… ‘should’ve went for that run’, ‘you could’ve made it to the gym for CrossFit’. It’s way easier if I just get if done with at the crack of dawn. Of course, if you prefer working out in the evening, then go for it! I’m definitely not making you get out of bed. I’m just saying that it’s all about the routine – whether you prefer to workout in the morning or in the evening.

I remember awhile back reading an article in Runner’s World, ‘Running on “E”. The article talked about how Reid Coolsaet and Eric Gillis, Canadian marathoners, “performed some of their runs on empty tanks”.  In other words, they ate breakfast after their morning run. By not eating before a run, your body is working harder and you are teaching it to burn carbs more efficiently (key for successful racing).  I had thought about incorporating this approach into my training, but didn’t really get around to doing it. I love having my toast&almond butter, banana, and coffee first thing. (Did I ever tell you I’m a sucker for routine.) Although the article states there is no direct correlation between running on “E” and faster race times, both Canadian marathoners did run personal bests. So after rereading this article, perhaps I’ll try and break habit (yeah right) and incorporate this running on an empty stomach approach into my training. Could this be the key to my BQ?

Do you prefer to workout first thing, lunch, or right after work? 

Do you train on an empty stomach? 

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4 responses to “Wake up call

  1. Well Sam, since you asked, I’m going to respond! lol. I LOVE doing most types of cardio pretty late at night actually. I try to use my peak mental time, as in when I first wake up, for school work. Then continue my class/school work routine during the rest of the day until a few hours after dinner when my brain is officially mush. When I can’t do anymore work, but am such a nighthawk that I know I won’t sleep anytime soon, that’s when I hit the gym (a few times as late as midnight)! In other words, I’m the complete opposite as you! I also like the fact that I eat all day before my workout because I feel that it makes me more mindful about the fact that I’m going to have to work hard later to burn that food off. So it helps me make smarter and healthier choices! Additionally, I really agree with you about making habits. The first few weeks into starting back at working out it rough, but despite every thought and feeling I have it always starts to feel better and better and begins to be my everyday routine instead of a chore.
    Anyways, just wanted to respond and share! Keep up the great work! I SUPER love your posts, am learning lots from you as well as getting tons of motivation to keep working towards my own fitness goals!

    • Thanks the response, Chels! First, super excited that this blog is motivating you towards your goals. Awesome! Second, some people definitely aren’t morning people like me (I don’t blame them.. why disrupt much needed sleep 🙂 BTW, I’m sometimes in bed by 8pm!). However, like you said, it’s about making it an everyday routine – whether it be in the morning, at lunch, or in the evening – and sticking to it. Excuses are always easy to make, but definitely don’t get you to where you want to be in the long run!

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