Monday, April 13, 2015

Night to Morning Conversioning

I think I may have just made up a word.

One of the hardest things about trying to squeeze in all these workouts is the realization that there is no other way to get it done but sacrificing sleep and converting to the *dreadful* morning person. If I were a "go to bed at a decent hour gal", it probably wouldn't be so difficult.  But the thing of it is, I stay up late. And like it.  Giving that up will be the toughest.

My buddy has figured this out long before I, so getting her morning texts are very VERY helpful. It's good to know I'm not the only one waking up at an unGodly hour to go WORKOUT? I am the first to get up (or never go to bed) when there's travel involved. But the energy required to exercise at that time is sometimes nonexistent. Nor the motivation.

As a night owl, I'm reluctant to admit that it's getting easier. At least I can say that now, since today's early class was cancelled. My bedtime is slowly rolling back to mid Jimmy Fallon to early Seth Myers range. Ha! My binge watching of House of Cards with hubby is suffering though. I fall asleep and then wake up when something big has happened and I feel we have to watch the episode again. To be fair, he falls asleep too so it's a do over for both of us! Lol.

I started with one weekly early class.  Now, I am early rising 3 to 4 times a week!!  (WHAT?!)

A few things that seem to help this painful transition:

1 - Psyche yourself up the night before

Usually after one really good workout, start thinking of the next. Think about how "tomorrow morning" you will get the big run, swim or whatever done and off the list.  Think about how much stronger you are after each workout.  All this is necessary because you will need to remind yourself of this when the alarm goes off at 4:30 and you snooze and ask yourself "whyyyyyyyyy???"

2 - Get yo stuff together

Set your clothes out. Your gym bag, water bottle, swim bag, bike shoes/bike by the door, whatever gear you need...have it ready to go.  This minimizes the time fumbling around in the morning when your eyes are still stuck together which in turn means, more time in bed. See? Win-win!  I can get from bed to driver's seat in about 15 minutes.  (I can and have but doesn't necessarily mean I DO each time...work in progess, k?)

3 - Fuel Up

I'm not saying you need a full breakfast but you certainly need a lil something in the tank to get you moving.  I've tried with and without coffee and maybe half a banana.  It CAN be done with an empty stomach or without caffeine but for ME, it was one less thing I can blame my sluggishness too.  It's a mind game, I tell ya.  If I had even half a cup of joe, it makes me happy and satisfied and ready to go. Whether or not the caffeine actually works is uncertain.  I'm thinking adrenaline takes over so really, whatever it takes to get you to the starting block is good enough.

4 - Pound the Alarm!

I have a motivational title to my workout alarm.  It's something to the tune of: "GET YOUR ASS UP!" followed by a string of workout and tropical destination type emojis.  Does it help?  Not really, but it's the isolated alarm for that purpose that gives it the sense of being special.  I can't let it down. Having the caps and bad word makes it feel like a mean personal trainer yelling at me. Not really, but just go with it.  Extra tip, you are a habitual snoozer to the point that you sleep through your entire workout session time, set your phone on the other side of the room (so annoying) but even more effective, put it on your non-early rising husband's night stand.  He will be SURE you get your ass up and out of the house in a hurry! (So I hear....ha!)


5 - Buddy System - Real or Virtual

This is by far, the most helpful of things.  If I committed to meet someone for a run before dawn, I would NEVER leave them hanging or sacrifice their workout for my lack of motivation.  I WILL BE THERE.  The same goes for our cycling class or meeting for group runs.  On the days when you have to go at it alone, however, draw on the support of the virtual buddy.  These are people that are in your same boat...living the same struggle of trying to fit it ALL in with limited time and opportunity. Your peoples, your tribe.  They scratch your back and you scratch theirs...text them when the alarm goes off, wake them up, give them the pep talk when they are just in a funk and don't wanna...and likely, they will do the same for you.  You will both like each other better later in the day when your workouts are complete! Ha! (experience speaking!)

What has helped me SO much with this transition is the feeling of getting to work after a good workout, getting kids ready and out the door, carpooling and traffic, knowing that it. is. done!  You can actually look forward to working the rest of the day and going about your evening duties (carpool/taxi/dinner/homework/family time) without the stress of having to find the time to leave all that and squeeze a workout in.

It's so gratifying that I don't mind nodding off a little earlier than usual.

Happy Monday all!

Valerie