Trying to Run before I can walk
Trying to run before I can walk is easier said than done.
The perfect schedule for a morning run
The most difficult thing for me to do in my persuit of becoming a good runner hasn’t been a lack of stamina, strength or even the right kind of shoes. The biggest obstical has been trying to get up in the morning early enough to get a run in before going to work.
My ideal morning schedule looks something like this.
5:15 am Alarm goes off, get up and put on running clothes.
5:20 Go to the bathroom, wash and wake up.
5:30 Eat a bananna and have a drink of juice.
5:45 Some stretches then go outside. Begin with a brisk 5 minute warm up walk and then run a preselected route, finishing with a 5 minute walk warm down.
6:15 – 6:30 Return home.
Drink water, shower and get in my work clothes.
7:00 am have breakfast of oats and yoghurt and freshly made coffee (Has to be fresh)
Relax and do a bit of housework.
8:00 Leave for drive to work.
A fairly stress free schedule right?
5:15 Alarm goes off, stops alarm and thinks ‘I’ve got to get up for a run, I must get up for a run.’
5:45 Checks phone, thinks ‘I’ve missed my deadline, now I’ve got to rush but even if I rush I wont get out of the house before 6:20 at the earliest so I’ve messed it all up.
6:00 Note to self, ‘I’ll definitely go out tomorrow because I’ll go to bed earlier tonight.’
6:30 Gets out of bed fully aware that I should have finished the morning run by now.
As above from 6:30
Creating good habits
So how do I change this scenario from repeating itself over and over again? Well, I’ve realised the problem isn’t the run, it’s the getting up so I am now going to change my goals from that of achieving a 5-10k morning run, to just getting up earlier. No grand expectations of super fitness, just getting up. If I feel like it I may do some exercises before the shower, take the dog for an early walk around the nearby park or do the housework slower, or read for a while whilst enjoying the coffee, I haven’t decided yet.
The key is to create small habbits which only require a small amount of motivation. Then increasing these habbits day by day, week by week until getting up and out for a run at 5:45am requires no more motivation than bushing my teeth.
I aim to apply this ‘Small Habbits’ ideology to other areas in my life as well. Like writing for example, beginning with a mental exercise involving a 5 minute brain dump in the morning, increasing this weekly, until I am able to put together an outline for a new blog article one morning, edit in the evening after letting the idea settle throughout the day and create a new one the next morning.
What else… I could read more each day, garden a bit more, or swap one biscuit for a piece of fruit each day until I reach for the fruit as habitually as I would a Digestive biscuit, I do have more than a few pounds to loose you know. Or, after making the coffee, whilst waiting for it to brew I could do a few push ups, just a few and/or do some Yoga moves, stretching is important, it releases tension. The possibilities are endless.
The key is to identify what I do do.
I now need to take a look to see if I can identify the things that need to change in order to improve my life and those around me. Writing down how I can then incorporate these small habit changes into my daily life, which would eventually become big habbit changes, helping me achieve those bigger long term aspirations.
This technique isn’t anything new, there are plenty of life coaches on Youtube and publications in the book shops teaching this stuff. Willpower still plays a pivitol role in it’s success, as change is invariably never easy to deal with. Motivation, however small, in easily attainable chunks is required, rewarded and repeated.
For now my motivation is for me to keep to myself, the blog may be my record of accountability. This is what social media is generally used for in announcements like these. So as I wake earlier and earlier each week you may hear of my achievements and little success stories here or within one of the many social media platforms.
So here it is, the small habbit begins with a wake up alarm call at a comfortable 6:00 am and a walk in the park with my pal Coco the Labradoodle. One habit at a time.
Keep it Green folks
Until next time, oh, and do subscribe.
About the author
A passionate organic gardener and advocate of green living ideas and ethics being taught in mainstream education. A blogger, photographer & website designer. A food lover and believer that quality and smart healthy eating doesn't have to cost the Earth. Always learning, always searching.