3AM. To most, this is the middle of the night, but for me, it’s a regular wake-up time. I often have to be at work early in the morning, and I prefer to run before work. In fact, if I don’t run before work, it is not likely that I will do it after work. I’m full of good intentions – I’ll pack my running stuff or have it set out so it’s ready to go when I get home. However, I never want to run after a day at work. I can’t figure it out. I love running. It calms me and helps me relax when I’m stressed. It seems like it would be exactly what I want to do after a busy day at work. But no, I always talk myself out of it after work because it does not seem appealing.
Somehow, though, getting up at 3AM to run is appealing to me (rather, more appealing than running after work). Maybe my brain is too tired to recognize how ludicrous it is to get up in the middle of the night to run. Perhaps it’s because I just get up and go and don’t have all day to talk myself out of it. Or maybe it’s a bit of feeling like I’m accomplishing something really awesome while the rest of the world is still asleep.
I am disciplined to a fault. If something is on my schedule, I do it. If I decide that I am going to get up at 3AM to run, I will. That run will get completed even if I slept horrible the night before and the logical, healthier option is to catch up on that extra sleep. I get irritable if my schedule is derailed, even if I am the one to “derail” it. It feels like my whole day is thrown off if I don’t get that early morning run in.
Before you ask, yes, the nights before I have a 3AM run, I go to bed insanely early. Like, 8PM is too late. You can usually find me in bed between 7 and 7:30PM. That’s easy enough in the winter when it’s already dark out, but far less easy in the summer. Because of this, I am more inclined to do some ‘after work’ runs in the summer. It’s appealing to run in the daylight AND with the sun shining. Winters in Northern Michigan are long and soaking up every second of the sun is crucial to my survival.
My non-running friends and coworkers think I am absolutely insane and tell me often. Fortunately, my absurdity is validated by you fellow runners. Now I’m curious – what’s the earliest you would get up to make sure you can get your run in?