Getting back into the habit

I’ve got out of the habit. Slowly but surely I’ve got out of the habit of getting up early to exercise.
First I wasn’t sleeping well at night, so opted for a lie in instead of getting up at my usual 615am to start my exercise at 630am.

Then I got a cold and although I did get up early a few mornings, but it was then that I needed my rest, so I allowed it.

Then this week, two or three weeks after all of this started, I planned to start my week and my Monday morning with a nice easy 4 mile run to Maxwell Park and back.

What did I do? I lay in my bed and read instead, promising myself I’d do a run after work, but knowing full well I probably wouldn’t. I’d woken through the night and lay awake for a few hours. Then when it was time to get up I was busy dreaming (about me running believe it or not) and ‘sleeping hard’ when it was time to get up.

So what gives? Why am I getting out of the habit? And how do I get back into the habit.


Sleep is a big issue. If I don’t get enough sleep or I gets broken sleep I feel like I should lie in. I almost justify it to myself: ‘you had a crap nights sleep, so you can lie in. Don’t go for your run.’

On Monday, the fact that I was mid dream and ‘sleeping hard’ suggests to me that I was in need of that lie in (instead of a run). But studies have shown that people who run in the mornings are more likely to get a good unbroken sleep that night, so maybe a run most mornings would help my sleeping?

So on Monday night I consciously tried to wind down after work. I had a sore head from about 3pm (which isn’t like me and probably the remnants of the cold), and once I got home, I didn’t go for that run I’d promised myself I would.

I was in bed for just after 9pm (bedtime usually 10pm if I’m lucky) and I managed to drift off for a good 8 hour sleep. Result!


This morning my alarm was set for 600am (with another alarm at 608am). And by 615am I was up. But in between that time I checked my phone / email / Facebook wasting precious morning minutes on crap. This has become a bad habit which I’m going to stop as of tomorrow.

The other habit is giving in and lying in just because. Enough!

I want to run through the early morning streets as the sun comes up so as of tomorrow my routine will be:

600am wake up
608am wake up properly,
out of bed for 610,
620-630 out the door for a run (or weights session indoors).

It will hopefully set me up for the day well, and get me back into the habit of getting up early for exercise before work. I’m going to make it simple and just run most mornings, and maybe do one other workout involving weights one of the days.

I’ve written about habits and routine before. From now on I’m going to fix my habits by replacing my bad habits with good ones, namely:

1. Don’t check phone / emails / Facebook before run: get up and go for run instead.
2. Get and early night, wind down (no exercise) and in bed for 9-10pm (for 8 hours).
3. Stick to the plan – no excuses (unless I’m really in need of rest – remember I’ll get my rest and lie in on Sunday). 4. Run an adventure for those who can’t!

I’m going to remember and think of those who can’t run:
– Like my friend Hazel who recently snapped her Achilles’ tendon! Ouch!
– Or Fit Girl who can’t run without the threat of knee pain.
– Or anyone else who can’t run because they haven’t tried, they don’t fancy it or they don’t have time.


Here’s the plan for the rest of the week:

Tomorrow I’m going to run 9.11 miles to remember those who died in 9/11. :-)…

9.11M Wednesday AM
5.4M Thursday AM
Swim or Strength Friday AM
18M run Saturday AM
Rest and lie in Sunday

Should be a 36 mile week fingers crossed I can change my habits and get up and out for my runs! If I don’t, I’ll have you (and myself) to answer to!

Have you got any bad habits which are preventing you from doing what you want to do? Are you going to change them for good habits instead?

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