Friday, September 23, 2011

Training: Early Days for Bobby & Me.

I'm doing it.  I've decided.  I don't know how, but I'm going to Indianapolis, and I shall elude zombies and clear obstacles and get to the finish, dead or alive.  

It's such a great idea, and it just sounds like so much fun.  I have to support it.  I've started talking to friends, seeing if they will join me.  I've got some nibbles, ambivalent interest.  We'll see.  But I'm doing it, even if I do it all by myself.  Obstacle training will be a challenge.  Maybe I'll have D play zombie and swipe at me while I dodge out of the way.  We could practice in the basement, and he could make zombie noises!  Of course, that's only the evasion portion of it.  If I have to do anything involving upper body strength I'd be in trouble.  I guess I could lift weights or something.  A plan is needed.  But for now, I'm working on the running itself. 

After all, it's a matter of survival
The front of this shirt says "if you see me running..."

Yesterday morning was the beginning of my training.  It went... not well.  

I had the motivation to get out there and start something, and I'm quite pleased about that.  I managed to get up early (don't laugh, I did! Unlike this morning), and as a chronic over-sleeper/snooze-button-abuser, this is quite something.  A repeatable achievement.  Anyway I readied myself.  I find that I was somewhat ill-prepared.

DISTRACTION:  I don't enjoy running for its own sake, so my mind needs to be occupied or the sound of gasping breaths and chortling onlookers will temper my enthusiasm.  But I haven't been able to find my mp3 player since we moved.  So I used my phone, which has a grand total of five songs on it.  This was a disaster because it was too bulky and heavy, and wouldn't stay in my pocket.  At one point it lemming-ed onto the sidewalk, busting my groove (but not busting the phone itself, happily). 

DOG (leash):  I chose poorly.  I chose the medium leash, which was not particularly bright (it was early).  Next time we go with the short leash.  Too much slack equals too much opportunity for a border collie to ignore.  I ended up with the leash wrapped multiple times around one hand, clutching at my phone in the other.  This is imprudent because when I needed to control the dog with both hands as I attempted to go past a section busy with morning traffic... ugh, let's just say it was both embarrassing and terrible.         

DOG (hisself): And then there's Bobby.  It is so hard to run with this dog. It's a challenge to walk with this dog, why did I think he'd just lope beside me with perfect etiquette because he was pleased to get a chance to run around outside?  He's so hard to control.. It isn't that he wants to trip me (surely).  I think he's just... dumb.  Even with the leash as short as I could make it, he still wound up weaving and veering underfoot until I had to pull constantly up and out on the leash to make a zillion constant corrections.  My outstretched arm felt like it was weighted with iron, and afterwards I ached shoulder to fingertips, but the dog didn't trip me.  Points for me.   

This is not sustainable.  I couldn't keep up any decent pace, nor even an indecent one.  Constantly correcting the dog so as to not get knocked over required concentration and moreover I quite often had to stutter stop altogether, or start to walk.  For all my exertions, and believe me I worked up a light sweat, I ran so intermittently that I'd be loathe to say I even ran at all yesterday.  Attempting to run in the morning is hard enough.  Training for a goal helps, but the tenacity to continue to train on a regular basis isn't innate, its something I will really have to push myself to do.  And if running is as hard as it was yesterday, it will be impossible to keep it up.  I won't want to.  My enthusiasm will only last so long, so Bobby has got to be better behaved on the leash.

I work with him whenever I have him on the leash, but he's not cured of his bad habits, nor am I cured of mine.  I get frustrated.  It'll take time.  I need something with a quicker payback.  People have told me that putting a prong collar on Bobby will make a new dog out of him.  I just don't want to fall on my face when we're walking/jogging together.  And if I need to buy even more canine accoutrement to accomplish this, I will, but dagnabit.  He already has more accessories than I do. 

I'll be trying to see if I can pick up a prong collar and test it out. 

In other news, this weekend is going to be a project weekend, including our second drainage/waterproofing project, and something for the basement.  We like to keep busy.   

No comments: