Rabid Runner: Dogs Beware

This morning, to make a bit of variety, I thought I would try a slightly different route, though who thought including a hill would be a good idea I do not know...

I set off out of the house, telling myself that including a more challenging hill would be good, and knowing that Laura (I'm still using Week 9 as a sort of comfort blanket) would keep with me through it all.

After the warm up walk I was pretty much laughing, as I hadn't realised that I would have a nice downwards incline to start my run with, and few startled crows fluttered out of my way as I approached. But of course, in running terms, what goes down must come up, and after a rather hairy sprint across a busy road, I was faced with a steep incline up a muddy path between two hedgerows. The gremlins were telling me to turn back and stick to one of my usual running routes. It was very tempting, but I was determined to conquer the hill and kept on. My legs moving in ever decreasing lengths until I must have been taking little tiny pigeon steps, but was at least able to keep going.

By the time I got to the top I was puffing and panting and foaming at the mouth. Somehow I don't seem to be able to swallow and breath at the same time, and as the breathing is pretty essential, I realised I'd ended up looking like some kind of rabid animal. This combined with the desperate look in my eyes, and sweat running down my face, must have been a terrible sight, but fortunately my new route was taking me through two fields, totally deserted apart from a few sparrows and a magpie or two.

Further along I turned onto a country road, and was enjoying my own company (and Laura's of course) when I spied a bus shelter ahead, with a group of people waiting patiently for their bus. As I staggered passed they eyed me with suspicion. Further still and I spotted a man walking three large dogs, all off their leads. I was dreading what might happen, but as I approached the dogs seemed to shy away from me and cowered around their owner's legs. I am sure they thought I was a threat, all that foam and all. So it was relief that I continued on my way.

Running through the village was pretty quiet, and then it was down a gentle hill, back to the edge of my park. I was really enjoying my new route, and it was only when I got into the park, that I realised I still had to contend with one more up hill climb before I would be on the homeward straight. My legs were complaining, this wasn't what they'd signed up for this morning at all. What had they done to deserve this torture? Why couldn't I stick to my tried and tested route? Hang on, only a fool would listen to talking legs, I told myself, and kept on going, again with tiny steps until I reached a level pathway.

Laura reassured me that I only had 5 more minutes to run, and enjoyed the last jog through the park, passing the Staffordshire Terrier who had been rather aggressive to me the previous week, who (even though I had now dealt with the foaming issue) now seemed in awe of me.


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13 Replies

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  • You conquered the hill. Well done, you are now, offically, its queen :D

  • Well done, you rabid runner! ;)

    I'm sure the Staffy was utterly in awe of your elegance and prowess :) And the people at the bus stop? Ignore them!

  • I'm not sure about elegance and prowess... ๐Ÿค”...๐Ÿƒโ€โ™€๏ธ... ๐Ÿ˜“

  • Ha ha! That made me giggle! You should have bared your teeth at the people at the bus stop, and howled!

    Are you buzzing now? Hills are horrible, but they do perk you up a bit don't they?

  • Once I got home and stretched I was pretty chuffed with myself. That's why it's nice to share in this forum - stops me boring the pants of all the people I know who aren't into running. ;-)

  • Well done ! Great post. It can be fun doing a new route . Perhaps next time will be less surprises ! I not a fan of gizmos but I do use a site called Walkjogrun (which someone on C25K recommended). Which tells me distances and steepness of inclines on routes that I plot. It avoids any great surprises and gives a satellite view which gives at least a good guess of the terrain.

    I have had dogs myself and run a route fairly well populated and dogs mostly on leads or if off leads, not wildly running around. I know on this site some have had bad experiences. I think this is usually in wide open or wooded areas where they are already running around exited (the dogs not C25K ers) and more likely to chase especially if you don't see them coming.

    If I see a dog approaching fast I would stand still. Usually I can see them well in advance to make some sort of judgement. Can be unpredictable. once my old docile retriever went to snap at a schoolgirl. I stopped her. What had spooked her I think was the fact that a strap from her bag was swinging about trailing (at ground level) and saw it as a threat. I stopped to explain to her and her mom because I wanted to warn her should it happen again and be wary should it happen again in presence of a dog not on a lead. Wanted to potentially allay any future fear of dogs. Luckily she wasn't put off to stroke my dog and make friends.

    You can't outrun a dog so best option that works it to stand still and dog loses interest. Even what seems a placid dog can get spooked. Perhaps your terrier had got used to runners now.

    Compared to dogs your hills will eventually be less of a problem. Just another challenge to be followed by a great smile of achievement as a reward.

  • I know there are some really well behaved dogs (and owners) round our way, but I have had unfortunate incidents a few times with less disciplined of the species which have left me a little wary. I'm hoping the hills will get easier. I have actually walked much of the route I ran previously, but somehow as a walker I hadn't noticed the inclines (probably because I've been lacking with Mr Razouski and distracted). Anyway it was good to challenge myself and have a change of scenery, so I shall have to include this new route into my running repertoire.


  • Note to self : Run with overflowing mouthful of shaving foam.

    Dog problem solved!


  • ๐Ÿ˜น Maybe squirty cream would be more palatable than shaving foam!

  • Will do the taste test tomorrow! ;)

  • Thinking of changing my screen name to Rabid Razouski! ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

  • ooooh! - I like that! Blitzkrieg Runner and not to be messed with by canines! :)

  • well done!!

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