Tag Archive for Running

How to go early morning running in Wellington

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How to go early morning running in Wellington

Morning running Wellington

So I did something this morning I never do…

If I’m honest it kinda really sucked and was kinda seriously awesome all at the same time :-( :-)

Nothing ground breaking…or internet breaking.

Nothing earth shattering.

But a big deal for me.

I went for a Run…

But not just ‘any’ run.

Going Running is not toooooo obscure for me, as I flit through periods of my life of being runner and running and entering races…and being consistent at it and perfecting my slightly faster than walking running style…but also flit back to not running for months in between.

But why was this Run so different?

I went early morning Running in Wellington…yup, in the early hours of this morning…before work!

I have never in my whole life ever accomplished that…ever.

This, to me was ground breaking…earth shattering…a big deal.

For all the millions of you out there who are runners before work, and wonder why it is so ground breaking to me, well it’s because I have never been early morning running in the 30+ years of my life!

I have always been an after work, after school even until late in the evening runner.

I always liked the concept of early morning running, it sounded good, popping out for a quick run before you head to work…

But the execution of it, the reality of it, never-ever happened.

The earliest I have ever Run in my day (bar entering races) would be 3pm.

I mean we water ski in the early hours of the morning when there is the best water…we Snow Ski sometimes even being one of the first on the mountain…on School Camps we are up at a sparrows fart off out tramping….hey in summer we even early morning swim out to the raft at 6am…

Early morning running – nope, nada, never!

As a Single Parent to a very busy Teenager we always have so much going on of a morning, we are up ridiculously early as it is, to get out the door to Sports Training, School and work each day.

Then there is the over-riding issue…I cherish my sleep ALOT and sleep cherish’s me back just as much.

So the thought of sacrificing sleep to go running just has never ever won in my book life world and it never wins.

Until today.

So how after 30+ years did I change an un-habit of a Lifetime?

These are my tips that got me out the door this morning, try them for yourself.

How to go for an early morning Run:

(when it feels like the most foreign concept in the world)

Mental preparation
I had been working myself up to this morning for a very-very long time. With many false starts.
Many many many snoozes of my billionty alarms.
But this week I was very focused, very determined and very planned.

Look at the forward forecast and target a fine sunny morning.  Sunrises and sunshine gives a great incentive to get out there.  Compared to rain, hail, sleet and Wellington hurricanes.

Equipment Prep:

› I lay out my Tights, Singlet, Sports Bra…even in order or what goes on first!

› My Running Sneakers* were at the ready even with socks dangling in them waiting for my foot/s.

› I put my hairbrush, hairtye, facecloth, toothbrush in centre front in the bathroom.

› In front of the front door I placed my Spibelt*, SNAP LOCK® bag (for my iphone*), my house key, my $10 note and my Running whispy jacket thing with a Tissue and that barely sugar (for emergencies if I keel over halfway along the waterfront) in it’s pocket ready to go.

Meaning I didn’t have to look for anything at all, it was all there.

Morning running Wellington

Plan your Timeline
On a Post-it note, I mapping out working backward my times then stuck it beside my bed.
So them there was none of this ‘how much time do I have’ while drowsily waking up and talking myself out of it.

› Alarm time
› Get up time
› ‘Really’ get up time
› Out the door time
› Get Back time
› Small celebration dance (Carlton-style) time – that I actually made it happen
› Shower time
› Leave for work time

I lay out my Magic Bullet Cup and ingredients for a small easy smoothie for as soon as I jumped out of bed to have something in my stomach (so I had less chance of keeling over).
Also nothing worse that rifling in the plastics cupboard at the hour of the morning trying to find that damn elusive bullet cup (I hate my plastics cupboard).

No Kids
I picked a day that Miss 15 ways away, so I knew I wasn’t going to get delayed by her needing something or even have to think about getting her out the door.  I needed no obstacles, including parenting obstacles even if they were only in my head.

Sleep in an un-comfortable bed

My Bed is just so so so damn comfortable.
Seriously I have the best damn bed in all of land.  I have had it for a billionty years, like it’s a Wellington Beds circa 1997 and is still A-Mazing.
Wellington Beds, after all these years I feel like you are secretly still conspiring against me going out early morning running every morning 😉

But as I lay there this morning awake, in my ridiculously comfortable said bed and saying to myself “you have been planning this for donkey’s years, I know your bed is ridiculously comfy and you could loll here for another hour in snoozy sleepy bliss, but come on damn it today is the day” and got all Oprah-fied and told myself “Live your Best Life”…
“Yes to sleeping sometimes…but not today…today is your independence day” all Bill Pullman/President like…
Ok, so now I was cracking myself up at my cheesy Hollywood inspiration, but it got me up.
Thanks Oprah and Bill.
Comfy bed = so much harder to go early morning running.

Will I do it again…go early morning running…probably…maybe…

Probably not tomorrow…hey who am I kidding probably not even next week.

But now I know I can…

Now I know it kinda worked…and what helped.

Now I know I didn’t keel over and die (well nearly at the lights after 10 minutes into it)…but at least I had with me my emergency Barley Sugar…and emergency eftpos card for if Barley sugar didn’t kick in and I had to limp home in a Taxi!

Ok peeps tell me…

When do you Run?
Are you an early morning Runner?
Or what time do you prefer?
What helps you get out the door?


Wednesday morning UPDATE:

So…um…this happened again this morning!

How long does it take to crack an un-habit and turn it into a habit I wonder?

28 more times?

54 more times?

Morning running Wellington

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Mud…mud…glorious mud – Brookfield Butt Busta Mud Race

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Brookfield Butt Busta Mud Race 2013

Mud from head-to-toe

2 rolled ankles

11 bruises (& counting)

3 broken fingernails

1 lost race number

1 lot of blood

= Priceless e


It’s a beautiful drive early on this Sunday morning along the Petone foreshore, over the Wainui hill and through the countryside to find the Brookfield Scout Camp, the location of the famous Brookfield Butt Busta mud race!

This is a race with a difference, or two…it has the normal 4km, 8km or 12km course options and there ‘is’ running involved.  But its the mud – water – bush – dirt and obstacles that take you out of your comfort zone and into the super fun zone!

We arrive early (we always do) and manage to score a park nice and close to the start and where everyone latter would gather.

The weather is perfect for an impending race…not hot…not cold…just nicely mildly overcast.

We rock on inside to gather our race numbers from Registration which is super quick and easy. We head back to the car and because of our awesome parking position we can sit, chat and watch all the comings and goings of everyone else that is slowly arriving.

There appears to be a large School group from Scots College, which is awesome to see so many kids and parents teaming up for the event.
It’s also fun watching the array of fancy dress costumes walking past and wondering “just how are they going to run in THAT”…and “are they going to also carry that gun…sword…bone…all the way round the course with them!”
Really I’m, secretly jealous as I LOVE dress ups, but can’t comprehend the idea of making my running even harder but trying to contend with my mask falling off or a scratchy tutu or something.

I love the feeling I have right now, there’s an air of outdoors-ness, being out and alive early on a weekend morning in the elements.  There’s a touch of excitement about what the race will bring, and a touch of anticipation/nervousness at also ‘what’ the race might bring. It’s a good feeling, the buzz is starting to build as the racer’s, spectators and crowds gather.

The race times have been set in waves, sending off the Junior competitors first, the School group, the Junior teams, the 12 km’s (3 loops), the 8km’s (2 loops) and then various waves of the 4km’s teams and individuals.



A large bunch of super hero’s



The mud pit


We have ages til our race starts, so we head over to near the end of the circuit to where the “River/Pond and the Mud Pit/Pool” are and await the first lot of eager kids to come through.
We don’t have to wait long and you hear them coming through the bush before you can see them emerge.
It was hilarious to see the looks on the faces of the ones that obviously hadn’t done it before and how they reacted to the Mud Pit. Some gingerly edged themselves down into it, some raced up and jumped full tilt and did a bomb submerging themselves completely in.
Note to self: “remember to close my mouth when I jump”.    Read more

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How Miss 13 could spot me easily in a Night Race:

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How Miss 13 could spot me easily in a Night Race:

Bike Reflectors

Bike Reflectors

Miss 13 runs a lot faster than me and likes to go on ahead, which I usually allow her to do as long as I can see her, and then she waits for me further up, or runs back to me.

But for a night time race, in the dark, with a couple of hundred other runners in a Forest, up what I considered a ‘mountain’ was going to be a little harder for both of us to keep track of each other if she wanted to go on ahead (and also the fact that I would be nearly passing out from the hill climb I needed to make it easier).

So I planned early and came up with a great solution that I have used over the last 2 years of  doing the Butterfly Creek Nighttime Madness races:

I bought from a discount shop (a bit like a $2 shop, but the next step up) a clip on “Bike reflector type light”.  It can flash on and off or stay on constant.

We don’t usually wear camelbacks running normally, but for this night time race it’s good sense to carry a rainjacket, thermal top, water, food and cellphone.  As if you injure yourself or you get lost, it can get pretty cold up there pretty fast.  Our “faux camelbacks” have just enough space in them to carry these essentials, I think they are called a “hydration backpack”.
I attached mine to a ribbon up on the shoulder strap, near the chest strap and I attached a hairtye to flick around it so it wasn’t flopping around.


Attached to the back of my pack

Attached to the back of my pack


Attached to the back of my pack

Attached to the back of my pack


So during the race in amongst the myriad of runners, headlights and thermal clad bodies, Miss 13 could look back and easily identify me by the different coloured blinking “Bike Reflector”. So she knew she could carry or, or if she had lost sight of me to wait til I caught up.

I also clipped another one to the back of hers, so I also could glance ahead and would see flashes of her “Bike Reflector” and know I could still see her which gave me piece of mind.


Attached to the back of Miss 13's pack

Attached to the back of Miss 13’s pack


Attached to the back of Miss 13's pack

Attached to the back of Miss 13’s pack



Attached to the back of Miss 13's pack

Attached to the back of Miss 13’s pack


Most people’s head lights or torches were a ‘white light’, wherea’s the Bike Reflectors were a Red/Orange colour and of course ours where flashing.  They weren’t our only light sources as we also both still wore headlamps and I carried another very small torch strapped to my hand.

We got a lot of comments from other runners and also families that were competing about what a great idea it was to be able to see each other easier and were asking where they could get one from.

I also attached a couple of coloured glow sticks looped into their circles to both the front and back of us too, which was just a bit of fun too.

We missed this years race, but look forward to doing the Night time madness race again next year.

Perfect lights for a night race

Perfect lights for a night race


When you’re doing it, you wonder why on earth you’re putting yourself through this again as it really really sucks heading up that first long slog up the hill…but once your past the summit and past all the uphill stuff, the downhill is loads of fun and in the 3 years we have done it I have always found this race to give great satisfaction of just achieving it.  And it’s such a different experience to do with your kid.

These bike reflectors now serve a double purpose, they can be used in races like this in future, but for now do double duty attached to the back of each of our “Grab n Go” backpack kits that sit by our front door in case of emergency.

Have you ever done a night race before?

I had a look to see where else you can buy these from and I see Amazon have a similar one here:

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