Your alarm goes off. It's still dark outside and the house it quiet. A busy day awaits you, but you know you need to get your run in before anyone in the house wakes up, or it may not happen. For now, everyone else in the house sleeps, even the dogs. Although, as you place a foot to the floor from the bed, one of the dogs lifts his head, and you quietly whisper a "shhhhhhh....." hoping he won't disturb the silence. You're all too familiar with every little creek and crackle in the floor, so you avoid those places as you tip toe to get dressed and sneak down the stairs. One of the dogs follows you, for he knows the peace and tranquility of what you're about to experience and he wants to be in on it too. Ever so quietly, you leash him up and head out the door. You made it this time! You're outside and the kids are still sleeping. All is right with the world. You're going to get your morning run in before the chaos of the day ensues. Yeah!!!
Does this sound all too familiar to anyone else? Before kids, I didn't really have to worry about when I went out for a run. I prefer morning runs, so that's when I usually went, but I didn't have to go then and it didn't have to be so early. Now, morning usually means sometime before daylight in those still and quiet wee hours of the morning. I give a high five to my husband as he returns from his workout and takes over watching the still sleeping kids. Early mornings are ok with me, though. I don't mind them so much. The air seems cleaner then, the sunrises are beautiful, and there's less traffic to contend with on the roads. I've become accustomed to running at that time and use it as my meditation, my time of reflection on what the day ahead has in store for me. It starts my creative energy flow.
Maybe it's the same for you, but I don't feel like myself if I miss this time in the morning. Running makes me a better version of me, a more patient and understanding human being. It is self-empowering and has shown me I can get through the hard times in life with self-confidence. Running is my peace, my solitude, my sanity. I'm so grateful for those early mornings that I can get out the door without disturbing the silence. It's during this time I celebrate all that's good as I contemplate how to make things better.
As you take care of others in your life, to include your kids, remember to carve a little time in your day for self care, whether that's a run or some other type of physical activity. It will help you show up in the world as a better version of you each and every day. : )