4:40am. I roll over in bed and glance at the time. The alarm isn't due to go off for another 5 minutes. Why am I awake? The last few days, my internal clock has pulled me from sweet slumber just before I hear the familiar 'Marimba' tone and roll out of bed to get ready for my early morning run.
These days, the temperature is right below freezing, and it is dark. I run on a residential loop near my house. One loop around is just over one mile. There is virtually no traffic. Occasionally, I see one or two people leaving for work. Perhaps someone walking a dog. This morning, I saw newspapers being delivered.
It isn't completely dark. There are street lamps. There are lights on houses. With no traffic, I can run in the middle of the street and avoid the icy edges and any irregularities in the pavement.
For the most part, I am alone. I've been leaving the headphones at home. It is cold, dark, and quiet. The sky is very clear. Glancing up, it seems I could snatch the stars. I'm alone in the freezing black morning. Alone with my thoughts. Alone with my breath.
It is quite meditative.
I'm very grateful that I've made the switch to running outside during these early morning sessions. For reasons that I can only attribute to my amazing proclivity for procrastination, I avoided gearing up and hitting the roads when I started these early AM workouts last year. I'd stumble down to the basement for another treadmill session. When the treadmill started to die (about a month ago) I decided to make the change.
So, it's 4:45am. Why am I awake? I've come to love these early morning, bone-chilling pre-dawn runs.
How about you?
Until next time - run, run, run.