This morning I got out of bed at 2:45am. Yep, by choice. (Again.)
Beating my 3am alarm by 15 minutes & cursing the fates for being born a true early bird, I opened a squinty right eye. The left followed begrudgingly. Blinking, I gave my gorgeous fiancee a sleepy smooch and then staggered to the guest room. Donning the gym clothes I’d set out the night before, I feel really good for getting this far! In my head I still hear my high school basketball coach saying “Proper preparation prevents poor performance!” Well coach, the 5P’s stuck. And now, instead of leading us to a High school basketball Championship, they help to ensure I’m slightly less likely to bail on pre-dawn exercise. Thanks for the inspo – all these sleepy years later!
Out the door I head – into a warm, sticky, buzzy summer’s morning, momentarily serenaded by a few notes of a Tui’s summer song from the tree above, and a handful of quiet hopes for the day ahead. I won’t make mention of the buzzy mosquitoes (ruh roh, just did!) that quietly snuck into my car for the ride to the gym.
Quite often, I spend the two hours between waking up early and the onset of dawn in blissful solitude (loud gym solitude!) while injecting my bloodstream with a well-needed dose of endorphins. I treasure these moments. Seemingly stolen, and always spent with a clear mind open to creativity, consultation, and competition.
Along with the buzz of moving my body, early morning sweat-sessions also to help balance my mind. Being awake while everyone else snoozes means I’m able to undulge in some of my favorite pastimes – the ones that fall by the wayside when you work long hours and are a Momma, too. While gymming, I read a lot of news, industry trends, interesting facts, and really just binge on chewing-gum-for-the-brain, snackable pop-culture memes, droll tweets, and addictive YouTube silliness. I find I am more inspired to to write more often when I have time to simply ingest content and think on it.
Ah, 3am. Bliss.
Honestly, I’d love to be someone who enjoys leisurely, lazy, languid sleep-ins past 7am (yes, even on weekends). Heck, the thought of snoozing until noon, curled up under a soft duvet with my beloved, sounds heavenly. But, reality being what it is (ahem, real) means that I’m up and at ’em each day before most people. And, while the reaction I tend to get when people find out my wake-up time tends to be “ARE YOU CRAZY???” I can honestly say: Nope. I’m not.
You see, there’s a gorgeousness to stillness. And silence. And the last remaining remnants of the night before as it morphs into a new day. Not to sound like too much of a hippy, but I really do think there’s magic in watching the world wake up – and in finding a rhythm between myself as an individual, and the universe as a whole. Quite often I do my best work first thing in the morning. Fresh mind, slightly caffeinated, and completely at peace. My goal is to greet most days with vigor and grace. All of this happening before the stress, hurry, hustle, bustle and pace of the day sometimes has me forgetting the beauty in being still and quiet… or, in moving the body while thinking.
I know a lot of people that fill their batteries at the other end of the day. Folks who like to stay awake until 3am. People with eyes that sparkle well into the wee small hours (mine drag!) It’s almost as if there’s an unspoken handing over of a torch when you put a night-owl next to an early-bird. And, I think it’s fairly fabulous that we, as humans, are so diverse not only in our thinking and beliefs, but in our body clocks and natural states of stasis.
So, what’s the point, Cass? The point is this: Yay for us early-birds! And, yay for the night owls. No matter when you greet the day or put it to bed, fill your batteries. Keep your engines fueled. Move your body. Get inspired on your own clock – no one else’s! Do what you need to do, when you need to do it, to stay balanced. Even if balance means 3am workouts and super snoozy evenings that sometimes call for a sugar-free Red Bull or two.
Fuel your best! Embrace your weird. Be thankful for understanding fiancees/partners/roomies when you’re up super-early. And, celebrate the “ARE YOU CRAZY!?” comments when they come. Because, normal is soooooooooooooooooooooo last decade.