Cat Motivation in the Morning


The one thing harder than to start training for my first marathon, is training after a nasty cold. I feel physically weak, and it does not help with the whole mental attitude either.

I wake in the middle of the night feeling hungry. Apparently dinner is not satisfying enough. It is 1am and I really want to just go back to bed and sleep in.

My alarm goes off at 6am and I try to hit the snooze button. My brain wars between not having enough sleep and finding the motivation to just get out of bed.

My cat makes the decision for me. He nuzzles me for a moment then agilely leaps to the floor. For some reason my body instinctively follows, albeit not as gracefully. Standing beside my warm bed I seriously contemplate diving back in and resetting my alarm clock. Instead I force my feet toward the chair with my laid out winter weather running clothes and mindlessly dress myself as my kitty rubs against my leg looking for his morning breakfast.

I shuffle to the kitchen and grab kitty's food first. He is so demanding. I pull out some Greek yogurt, pumpkin flax granola, and a little honey. Kitty eyes me suspiciously, as if he knows I am dragging and do not want to head out the door.

My hat and mittens are on and I am out the door. It is cold out, but not unbearable. Still dark outside, and a light covering of snow is on the ground. A little traction on the slippery sidewalks I muse. In my revised running plan this run is just a feeler, about two miles. Just enough to see if I am really over this nasty cold.

I take it easy the first half mile or so. At first I am not as self conscious about hocking luggies.

"A mass of mucous and saliva that is forcefully ejected from the mouth onto a person or object. "
Not very ladylike behavior, but I am stuffed up. Pretty sure by body wants to expel that crude in an efficient manner, and it is still dark out. Who is going to catch me?

Until a turn and see an older gentleman coming outside of his house bundled up in a hunting parka. I shrug unapologetically and continue on. If he wants to scold me, he has to catch me. Which may not be as hard as it sounds since I am still fairly sluggish.

A mile out I can feel how the inactivity is affecting my muscles. Even after a short run they are strained. I run around a small block and double back.

I pass the hunting parka man who is now walking down the block. I smile and nod, he just stares impassively. Grumpy.

My pace picks up a bit as my muscles warm. Still strained, but feels lighter too. They need the release after a sleepless night. Sprinting the final stretch I stop my watch and am amazed my pace was clocked at 6'44/mi those last few meters. There is still some energy in the tank. That is good news.

Overall, I run 2.4 miles in 21:01. A 8'44/mi pace. Not terrible considering I am hocking up more luggies into the snow bank as I enter my kitchen to finish my breakfast and make lunch.


I discover that grilling chicken breasts that have marinated all night is soothing after a short trip outside. Kitty jumps on the counter and eyeballs me, I get some too, right?

Pull out the kitty treat jar and he relaxes. Darn him and his cute little pouty face. But he deserves something, he motivated me to get out of bed after all. He commandeers his prize and runs from the room to terrorize his little kitty sister. I'll sneak her a treat later for putting up with him.

I pour some chocolate milk into a cup. After all, my bed was calling, but I ran instead. Treat for me too.

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