I was really up for a 4K today - feeling physically good after Tuesday’s 8, despite it being a slog at the time, and mentally in need of a clean out after a stressful few days. A nasty Thursday afternoon - no one will be at the park - so I had the Bright Idea to take the dog running with me for the first time.....
I’ve had one of those Cani-X waist belts for years - used it once. I didn’t want to be pulled from pillar to post, so attached the dog end to Mosi’s halter. I allowed plenty of time to walk at the start and let him take care of nature’s call. Suitably emptied, we start trotting.
I forgot to tell you; the agility crowd have set up on the main sports field (on a Thursday afternoon????) and my Belgian Shepherd hates collies almost as much as bouvier’s after he was bitten by one in agility training when he was younger. Needless to say we switched to tracking.
So we head out around the edge of the park, round the big fields - loads of space. The agility lot can show off how they can walk 3 collies off lead, at once, while texting, drinking coffee and remaining in complete control of every step their dogs take (not). We can avoid them most of the way round.
Mosi, by this point, has found a reserve bladder and must have eaten twice as much in the last 12 hours than I gave him credit for. 2 more stops to fill up plastic bags and I accidentally step on his poop while looking for it among autumn leaves.
Oh well, thinks I, it was supposed to be a test today, anyway. He occasionally stops dead to raise a leg, or dart off at a 90 degree angle because he’s detected a scent (which he has been allowed to do on walks- not his fault) so that’s really annoying. I notice I’m not in a rhythm and the waist belt is still yanking me sideways which isn’t doing my torso any favours.
We started heading back towards the centre of the park and start working together nicely but I saw we were catching up with an oblivious owner and 2 off-lead collie-types and decided to go off the gravel track to do a loop on grass - thereby cleaning any remaining poop off my Saucony’s, giving her more time to either notice my fluorescent pink jacket or give us some more distance, or we have options to go in another direction.
Remember I said about attaching the waist belt to the halter? Unfortunately, that meant the distance between my feet and the dog’s tail was non-existent so I didn’t see a huge crack in the ground. My foot landed and it felt like I’d stood on a spike with the outside of my foot, as my instep rolled into the crack.
I immediately stopped and swore. Walked carefully back up to the gravel track, it felt ok-ish to walk. The flipping collie-owner had hardly put any distance between us, in spite of my best efforts! But I tried a few run strides anyway, felt my foot object, and decided to abandon the run and walk back to the car. 2.5k!!! So frustrating!
On the positive side, I think my foot is just jarred, not sprained. RICE time. It could have been a lot worse. The dog stopped pulling when he realised we were going at his Mosi-wiggle pace, for a change, and he walked back to the car on a loose lead. I was thrilled with how he coped with the dogs we saw, not an ounce of tension 😁 but he’s staying home on my runs until after the Great South, at least.