Last winter, I soon started to receive unsolicited text messages from a friend (we will call her B to protect the innocent, ha!). A couple times a week in the evening, I would receive texts stating, “We’re running at 5 a.m.; come join us!”. Immediately, I would laugh at the absolutely insane idea of running in the dark when most sane people are still asleep. I would text back, still laughing and politely decline the offer. Not only was it darker than dark at 5 a.m., but it was freezing cold! Staying in bed under my warm blankets and next to my radiator of a husband sounded like a much better idea.
At this time, it wasn’t completely necessary to run so early in the morning for me. On a previous post, I mentioned scheduling in my work out like any other daily task. Some days I would have no problem with fitting in my run, but other days my 10 a.m. run would become a 2 p.m. run or maybe I would end up missing the run altogether. My work schedule was a little heavier and I also was juggling a part-time job. One day, the crazy side of me won and I decided to join the running group at the awful 5 o’clock hour.
In addition to running, I also wanted to start weight training – I have dumbbells in my home and a membership to a local gym. However, working out at home never works well for me – I can always find something else that needs to be completed. Working out at the gym alone on the machines or dumbbells just sounded dull and boring. Lucky for me, a good friend of mine had started a workout group for women which was meeting 3x a week. The workout was based on High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and I was excited to try something new.
“Chatting while sweating with friends makes the workout a lot more fun and time really does fly.”
In both situations, I continued to meet for the 5 a.m. runs and join in the HIIT classes. Why? Accountability. When the awful shrill of my alarm sounds at 4:30 a.m., I immediately jump out of bed knowing people are waiting on me. Also, I have come to love the social aspect of running or working out with others. Chatting while sweating with friends makes the workout a lot more fun and time really does fly.
A few tips to prepare for success:
- Find a group of like-minded individuals. Whether it is yoga, running or working out, find a club or a partner to join forces with you. Having someone else counting on you to be present whether at 5 a.m. or 5 p.m. will help all of you stay on track. If you are more introverted, there are also online groups you can find to help stay connected to others who are working out.
- Prepare yourself. The night before, I organize everything I will need so I am ready quickly. My clothes, socks, shoes and workout equipment are ready to go. I wake up at 4:30 a.m. and am out the door at 4:45 a.m.
- Make a commitment. Schedule or sign-up for the class the night before if you are able. Text a friend and set a time/location to meet for a workout for the next day.
- Pack a water bottle and a snack. You will need to stay hydrated and you may need a snack after your workout. Pack a healthy snack so you are not tempted to grab something unhealthy on the way home.
- Life happens; don’t sweat it. Of course after all your preparing, your child may be up all night, or you might sleep through your alarm. It happens. It’s okay. Tomorrow is a new day!
Until next time,