Chasing the Dawn

I don’t really function well in the mornings. For a start, I absolutely need a shower before I can pass for a reasonably well adjusted human being and even then it takes all the focus I can muster to ensure that I don’t leave the house naked. Breakfast becomes a viable option only after I’ve been awake for at least an hour, but two are even better.

It won’t surprise anyone then when I proclaim yet again that I’m no good at early morning runs. It’s as though my body thinks that it’s actually sleepwalking and my brain refuses to obey me. It’s certainly not a time when I’d expect a rave run.

But this morning I woke up early and decided to go for a run regardless of my mind threatening to stage a dirty riot at the mere thought of the endeavour. You see, there are three rules that I run by:

1) Have fun – if it’s not fun, make it fun.

2) Always, always listen to your body – battle with your mind if you must, but work with your body.

3) Keep changing things and try new things – keep moving forward.

I thought that an early morning run would be a perfect opportunity to practice all three of my running decrees at the same time: it’s certainly an uncommon experience for me and I wasn’t sure how my body would react. I expected to have to work hard to find a way to make it enjoyable and as such it had the potential to teach me new and valuable things.

Before I left my house I had the sense to wrap up nice and warm, as the world I was about to step into was dark and frozen. I had to stay in tune with my body, as I wasn’t sure how well I’d physically cope with running on an empty system. I aimed to find a pace that was bearable, but quickly managed to settle into a rhythm that was slow enough to allow me to actually enjoy the run. Before I knew it, I was gathering momentum and yet I was so comfortable that I felt I could have gone on forever. I realised once again that all my previous worries had been completely unnecessary. And just then, my efforts were rewarded with the sights of a wonderfully stunning sunrise:


It was a gentle run – sleepy, solitary, and utterly magical; the ultimate morning run.

Have you ever been convinced that you’d not be able to enjoy a run, pushed yourself to do it anyways, only to experience something amazing?

10 thoughts on “Chasing the Dawn

  1. Laurel says:

    Like you, I’m definitely not a morning person… or morning runner. When I can’t get a run in any other time of the day, though, I will resort to running in the morning. That sunrise is stunning by the way!

    • Hey and thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment! I think it’s good to push ourselves out of our comfort zones here and there and to try new things – just because we think that we won’t enjoy something, doesn’t mean that we won’t! Running has surprised me so often in that way. =)

  2. Angie says:

    What a beautiful sunrise! I’ve had several runs where I had to push myself to get out the door and then either seen something totally cool or had an amazing run. That’s what fuels me through the door on those hard days.

    • I couldn’t agree more! You just never know until you try. Incidentally, I have a 2km rule – when I really don’t feel like running (and there isn’t anything really wrong, like I’m in pain or ill) I go out anyway and run 2km. After that I re-assess the situation, and if I still don’t feel good at all, I head home. There’s no point in running when it’s really not enjoyable. In reality, I very rarely abandon a run; over the last year, I stopped only two runs after they didn’t pass at the 2km mark! In most cases I feel much better once I get moving.

  3. Amy says:

    I love your first rule! I generally follow the same thing. If it’s not fun, why are we doing it? Great job getting out at a time you that’s difficult for you!

    • Thank you! I don’t think my body works in a way that will ever allow me to be a good runner in the mornings, but that shouldn’t stop me from enjoying the odd morning run regardless. There’s something wonderful about running when the world is still asleep!

  4. Jim Brennan says:

    I’m with you all the way on this one, Fullmoonrunner. When my four kids were young and I was working insane hours, I’d wake and run before everyone else in the house woke up. I wasn’t a morning person back then, but I’d force myself out of bed, and learned that once I pushed through those first couple-few miles, and the sweat and endorphins started flowing, the day had begun. Now, decades later, I’m running early one or two mornings a week with a friend, and seeing some of those amazine sunrises. It’s worth the earlh wake-up, for sure.

    • I completely agree with you Jim – there’s something very serene about running in the mornings. I’ll try to do it more often from now on, although I know that my body wouldn’t be capable of doing any speedwork at that time! However, that shouldn’t stop me from enjoying a nice and easy run at the very start of my day.

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