I woke up naturally Thursday morning after snoozing through my early, early alarm, to see that the sky was still dark through my bedroom windows. Oh goodie, I can still get in a run. I grab my cell phone to see the time (I really need to reset the old digital clock next to my bed again); the little white numbers read 6:05am – yes! I sneak downstairs as not to disturb my sleeping babies and the stair baby gate closes behind me. Going first to my beloved Keurig for a morning jolt. I remember throwing a load of laundry into the dryer last night, so I quickly hit the short spin cycle to fluff things up. Walking into the kitchen I stare down the large pan we left soaking in the sink overnight. Taking a sip of coffee, I begin pumping soap onto the brightly colored sponge. This shouldn’t take long. As I notice the dishwasher that could so quickly be unloaded, seeing that the kiddos are still asleep. Placing the many cups, bowls and tedious baby bottle parts onto the funky lime green grass style drying rack. Drinking still more coffee. Gosh how is it one sippy cup can have so many parts, and I’m never buying those ones with the flip straws again.
Toss on my baseball hat and socks, skipping over my favorite Lululemon sports bra today for an older off brand. Saving that one for a longer run later this week. There’s something about flashy athletic gear that gives you an extra boost, I’ll take anything I can get. Almost ready, but then I walk by my son’s paper work from school and I know the signed release forms are due today. Ok, I’ll just read and sign these now, this is a good time. Putting the completed papers in my son’s school bag, it occurs to me that I forgot to pack his lunch last night, PB&J it is. Toss in a now peeled orange, box of raisins, small bag of mixed nuts and fill up his water bottle. Nice work. Reaching for my coffee, I swallow the last sip. One more cup shouldn’t hurt. I walk back to hit the blinking button filling my mug back to the top. I slide on my Brooks, which is my favorite sneaker to wear. I pick the same ones over and over – changing only the colors. I soon hear the sweet little sound of my son’s voice “Mama, I wake up, I want you come get me”. “Ok buddy, mama get you”. I tell him as I walk back up the stairs. Good thing I just laced up.
We say our good mornings and I fill his cup with the ever so popular chocolate milk, as I know it will quickly be requested. We walk into the playroom/ mudroom/ make shift exercise room. One day I will have one of those amazing playrooms you dream of on Pinterest, a designated mud room and a exercise room equipped for even the best of gyms, also a garage for that matter. For now it’s a multi purpose room. On second thought, I like the set up because it allows for my son to be playing all the make believe games a little one can imagine all while I run on the treadmill. Which is so desperately need to do. I love having a treadmill. Which is funny because I really didn’t even used to like running on treadmills before kids. Now I’m happy to get whatever run I can, whenever I can. I note the time 7:15 am, ugh where does the time go.
I guess today I’ll just do some quick speed work. I crank up the elevation to 6 and the speed to a steady 7.0 to warm up. I like looking at the “track” style screen. It reminds me go the days not so long ago, when I actually ran on the track. One of my many running groups meets occasionally (ok they meet regularly once a week, I meet them occasionally), at a middle school track. We meet before sunrise and I can still visualize the tall basketball court sun cover on one side and baseball field in the distance on the other. It helps me to zone out while I run. By simply taking interest in a few landmarks, helping me to know where to start and stop, encouraging my mind to drift.
About one lap in and I’m ready to crank it up. Speed button pressed in till I reach 7.5. Drifting still I start thinking about the day that lies before me. I still need to pump (I’m currently a breastfeeding mama), get the kids and myself dressed, baby dropped off at my in-laws, the toddler to school and get to the salon all in time for my 9:30 am highlight.
About a mile and a half in, I bring the speed down to catch my breath and to hear what my little one is so desperately trying to tell me. “Oh you want more milk, ok buddy just give mama a few more minutes. I think there’s still plenty in there”. Back to work I crank it up to a speedy 8, gotta get my heart rate back up. I know I’m running tight on time; my duties for the day are only just beginning. The room is starting to feel hot,. I know the house thermostat has not been adjusted while I’ve been running, no one else is awake that could reach it. It’s just my body temperature rising. Looking down at the screen, seriously I’ve only gone a quarter of a lap! Ok I need to zone out again. Maybe I’ll make a deal with myself (I make deals with myself all the time). Finish this lap with a strong speed of 8.5, jog a minute, then I only have to run one more fast lap. “Yes, deal”, I accept the offer. Pushing strong I find this lap finishes quickly with even a little extra quarter of the track behind me.
Lowering the elevation to a flatter 3.5, I catch my breath. Last one I think to myself, I’ve really gotta get in the shower. The baby will be awake soon too, and my chest is starting to feel engorged. Pumping right now will only take up more time, so I need skip it for now. Ok let’s just do it. Revving it up to a whopping speed of 8.8, I’m sprinting with little spots between my breaths. Too fast to even let my mind drift away. Instead I focus straight ahead. There is a little spot on our cream wall in front of me that appears. Focus. My breath is quick, hardly time to take in anything deep. Looking down I have less than half a lap left. I go for the extra credit and bring the speed up to 9.4, Im hauling. I should be finishing this lap off in no time. Going, faster and stronger then any lap yet (today), I stand taller in my stride and push myself to the max. I know I must be coming to the end soon but I’m scared to look down. I hate prematurely seeing the screen, without being beyond my target spot. Throw in a Hail Mary, that always works. After one very quickly recited (in my head) “Hail Mary”, I look down at the screen. Yes, I made it and almost another lap further. Pressing strongly onto the treadmill down speed button, I continue my pace till the belt synchs with the numbers reading on the screen. It almost always seems to jam around 5, which is still just fast enough to keep my running pace going. Re-hitting the speed button down, I stop it at the ever so prefect 3.5. Awe, yes my favorite brisk walking cool down pace. Thank goodness.
I plan to really cool off well today, maybe even follow up with some stretching but I hear my daughter cooing now in the distance. I’m being summoned, someone else wants milk and attention. I go up the stairs to retrieve my sweet little infant girl, whose face lights up as I walk aside her crib. “Good morning”, I tell her, it is time to start the day.