My Early Morning Run: My ‘Me Time’

by Melanie Coulson, Team Awesome 

For decades now, I’ve gotten up at 5 a.m. to face the day. Growing up, it was to work at the farm, then to make the early morning rowing practice, and for the past 16 years it has been to run.

Except for those mornings when I give in and hit the snooze bar. Then I am a wreck. Those are the days that start with me attempting to put eyeliner on puffy eyelids, a big cup of caffeine beside me as I drive in to work. Those mornings are never good, because I haven’t started the day ‘right.’

I’ve missed my ‘Me Time.’

One thing I’ve learned as a mom is that you have to declare some ‘Me Time’ – and sometimes the hard truth is that means getting out of bed long before everyone else. I know that I deserve that extra hour in bed, but I also know how much better I feel after my early morning run.

Haven’t tried running at 5:30 a.m.? Here’s something you’ll learn – it’s beautifully quiet. Beautifully. Quiet. No one is asking anything from you. You are free to run as long as you want (with the time you’ve allowed yourself), as fast as you want (I always run so much faster in my head!) and do as many situps as you feel like. No one is asking for clean laundry, breakfast, or apple slices in their lunch.

And watching the sunrise as I run is an everyday beauty not to be missed. Yes, even when it’s -15C.

It is my favourite time of day. The early morning quiet. Running. My ‘Me Time’.

‘Me Time’ isn’t about being selfish. I remember how a friend of mine told me a long time ago that she works out because it makes her happy, healthy and less stressed with her husband and kids. And when you get up early to run or workout, you’ll feel like a superhero – look how much you have done before most are awake?! You can do anything! Early workouts leave me energized.

A happier, more energized, more patient parent? That’s just keeping the best interests of my family at heart.

Now, I’ll admit that carving out my ‘Me Time’ isn’t always easy. Even if I get past the snooze bar, getting out of the house can be tricky. Here are two tips that I use to get out the door.

  1. Put the alarm clock on the other side of the room – you’ll be more awake and won’t turn it off.
  2. Get your running clothes ready and your shoes set out the night before.

You don’t want any reason to go back to bed. Trust me, even a moment of ‘where are my running socks’ can be so difficult to solve and make you think twice about your morning workout.

This is your ‘Me Time’ – do you really want to sleep through it?


MCoulsonA busy working mom to two boys, Melanie Coulson hits the streets to reduce stress, keep fit, battle the bulge, but mostly to have some ‘me time.’ Sometimes this means running at 5 a.m., but it’s always worth getting out the door. Melanie is also a member of Team Awesome.