Early morning workout for Cycling Parents

By Cycling Dad:

With two kids to look after, finding time for a workout has become more difficult. Essentially, every activity involving the children seems to take at least twice as much time as before. Alex is doing a great job taking care of Johanna and Konstantin, but I want to be there to support her on weekdays at least in the mornings and in the evenings, getting the kids ready for the day and ready for bed. So in order to be able to keep cycling, one has to be creative.

Bang! Wednesday morning, 5.22am. Cycling Dad sporting Lycra again, getting ready for a two-hour workout before getting the kids ready and heading to work. This shall be an experiment to figure out whether super-early workouts can be a viable option to get in some mileage during the week.

Johanna has kept us up more or less the whole night, demanding a fresh bottle of milk roughly every two hours. Her screaming then usually wakes up Konstantin, who figures that he might as well ask for a bottle. Today is an exception, and the sibblings’ wish for a lift to the big bed was granted.

Aren’t they adorable? It’s really difficult to leave the family behind in the warm bed, when you feel like curling up next to them and getting in an extra hour of sleep…

First stop before getting the bike ready was the kitchen. I picked up some easy to digest food – bananas, white bread and multi fruit juice. Coffee would’ve been nice, but I was eager to hit the road…

I left the house in complete darkness, using an excellent set of USB-chargeable Blackburn head and taillights (will post the review soon). Already around 6am, the sun already started to dawn. Paradoxically, watching sun dawns while riding my bike reminds me of a few memorable days in the summer of ’96, when I used to come home in the mornings after parties. Only that this time I wasn’t drunk :) .

The ride was beautiful, with birds singing all around and hardly any traffic on the roads. I even spotted a couple of deers right next to the road. However, in the absence of sunshine, this was one of the coldest rides this season. Make sure you dress warmly!

I rode for one hour and 50 minutes, 46k, covered 540m in elevation gain, burned through a bit more than 1000 kcal and arrived at work feeling fresh around 8.30 am. Not bad at all, especially considering that this would have been a week without any riding on weekdays. The experiment worked out. Super-early morning rides can be one component of our strategy to stay on the bike as Cycling Parents. Commuting to work by bike is the other. I will try to establish a routine from both shortly.

How about you? Do you go ride early in the morning, or commute to work? Let me know!