Six go-getters reveal the way they start their day

By Arianne Cohen



Composer, Iron Man 3 41, Los Angeles

Bedtime: 3:00 a.m.

3:00 a.m.

I’m usually on vampire hours. This is when I leave my music studio to get some sleep.

9:00 a.m.

Nap over. Grab some eggs and toast.

9:30 a.m.

Try—emphasize try—to hit the gym, which is attached to the studio.

10:45 a.m.

Sit down at the piano and compose. There’s no excuse, since that piano works even in a power outage.


Founder and chairman, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia 71, Bedford, N.Y.

Bedtime: 12:00 a.m.

5:00 a.m.

Wake up with the sun.

5:15 a.m.

Work out with a trainer.

6:15 a.m.


6:30 a.m.

Feed myriad animals.

7:00 a.m.

Drink green juice while checking e-mails and blogs.

7:30 a.m.

Get in the car to New York with one cappuccino. Read the New York Times and do the crossword.

8:15 a.m.

Arrive at desk.


Chief executive officer, Thetus 53, Portland, Ore.

Bedtime: 10:00 p.m.

5:30 a.m.

Wake up, put on my running clothes, and jump on my computer to make sure there were no overnight emergencies.

5:45 a.m.

Leash up my golden retriever, Hobbes, put on my GPS watch, and do a 3- to 5-mile run.

6:30 a.m.


6:45 a.m.

Work from home. I always try to get one project done in the morning, like a presentation or product plan review.

8:00 a.m.

Juice and a yogurt.

8:10 a.m.

Walk a mile to work.

8:30 a.m.

Arrive at the office ready to go.


Executive vice president and chief marketing officer, David’s Bridal 40, Chester Springs, Pa.

Bedtime: 12:15 a.m.

5:45 a.m.

Start the day with personal scripture study.

6:00 a.m.

A 10-minute strength-training routine of push-ups, curls, and crunches.

6:45 a.m.

Shower. Use the Pulse iPad app to get an overview from the papers and trade publications.

7:00 a.m.

Quick breakfast of cold cereal and fruit while I look at David’s Bridal’s daily sales results and review competitors’ e-mail offers.

7:30 a.m.

I have a 30-minute drive in. I collect my thoughts from the morning’s research and mentally plan the day.

8:00 a.m.

At my desk.


Chief information officer, Bank of the West 51, San Francisco

Bedtime: 11:00 p.m.

6:00 a.m.

I check the headlines and any urgent e-mails.

6:45 a.m.

Dressed and sipping coffee.

7:20 a.m.

My teens and I sync up our schedules for the day and plan for dinner together.

7:30 a.m.

I use my 40-minute commute to enjoy my favorite music, like the Black Eyed Peas, in between conference calls, voice mails, and a few bites of yogurt.

7:45 a.m.

I have to admit it: I am energized as the sun rises over San Francisco Bay.

8:10 a.m.

Reach the office, eager to get going.


Founder and chief executive officer, Xvolve 28, San Francisco

Bedtime: 10:00 p.m.

6:00 a.m.

I always wake up early. It gives me time to get ready for the day.

6:30 a.m.

Drink five or six cups of loose-leaf green tea and eat several pieces of fruit with some bread and peanut butter.

7:00 a.m.

See what’s going on in Japan on Facebook and read what my employees there are up to—most of their posts are business-related.

7:30 a.m.

Meditate about where I’m at, my vision, and how I can work toward that.

8:00 a.m.

Shower and get dressed.

9:00 a.m.

Bike to work.

10:00 a.m.

Start the day in the office with energy and purpose.


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