Sleep is Important

Sleep is one of those things, like having a good commute, that you take for granted while you're getting it, but as soon as it goes away, everything is terrible.  My son is now almost five months old, and sleep has been a thing.  

This post was actually a draft that I made shortly after my son was born in June.  It was only one line, so not really even a draft, but it was interesting to see some activity on here since Bub was born.  Honestly, this blog, with it's ~30 page views per day, is not exactly at the top of my mind as I wake up at 4am for the day to placate my son to allow my wife to get a few extra hours of sleep (this isn't common, but give me some poetic license here).

Training in general has not been at the top of my mind.  I was working out 6-7 days a week, and  now I'm having trouble fitting in half that, if I'm lucky.  So far this week, I swam on Monday, and walked on my treadmill during a conference call for meetings on two different days (to be fair, I also have a cold).

That's not to say that there isn't time to train or that my wife isn't being accommodating, because there is and she is.  I am just finding it so difficult to do, and I think it's because of my sleep.  Basically the only time I have is early morning.  I'm not working from home very often and there is no shower or gym at work, so I can't really get a workout in during work hours.  When I get home, I want to get in as much time with the kids before the bedtime routine starts at 7:30, and that includes preparing and eating dinner.  By the time the kids are down and things have settled down, I'm wiped.

My wife has suggested that I get my workouts in in the morning.  It's a great idea and what I did before Bub came along.  I would plan my run for the next morning - I would know how far and at what pace I would be running.  I would sleep for literally as long as I could.  I knew it took about 15 minutes from the time my alarm went off to actually start my run.  I would know how far my run was going to be and at what pace I was running it, and then I would add in a bit of extra time for a cool down.  I would add all the time together and subtract it from 7am.  My daughter was usually up around 7:30 then, and that would give me time to shower.  Depending on the day, I was up anywhere from 4:45 to 5:45.

Now, my daughter is up earlier, and when she "sleeps in" it's less consistent, so I have to assume she'll be up at 7.  Bub is a completely random at when he'll sleep and be up.  Sometimes he and I are up at 4 for the day, other days he'll let us sleep in until 7 and even later.  Generally he's good, it's just hard to plan around.

My biggest issue is that I am in the parenting stage of being tired all of the time.  I use my fitbit to track my sleep.  I'm a 7-7.5 hour a night kind of sleeper, any less and I'm a grump.  My body doesn't really allow me to get any more.  Since Bub was born, I'm averaging 6-6.5 hours.  I'm functional with that amount of sleep, but it definitely puts me in the yellow-zone for my daily affect.  It also is very difficult for me to get out of bed and go down to the treadmill to get a run in or on the trainer for a ride.  I think the issue is two-fold: being tired and lack of a plan.  If I have a plan, I can overcome the tiredness, but I don't so I don't.

My wife is right - if I want to get my workouts in, I need to figure out a way to do it in the mornings.  After all, I'm sitting writing this right now as Bub is asleep (though I took him out of bed at 6am), and my daughter is asleep ~30 minutes longer than normal.  It would have been a great morning to get a run or ride in.  My wife even suggested it as I was walking out of our bedroom door, but I just could not muster the motivation.  I keep telling myself that I'll turn the corner once he's sleeping more consistently.  And to be fair, there was no way for me to predict that my daughter would sleep in, and Bub would be so cool for as long as he has.

It's been almost five months now, his sleep probably won't get seriously consistent until he's about a year.  I need to take my wife's advice and take control of this situation.  Start setting my alarm to get up to work out.  Take that kid with me to the basement and let him sleep to the rhythmic sound of my feet hitting the belt at 180 steps per minute.


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