Sunday, January 1, 2012

Why I run....

I run to stay healthy and to manage my weight. Every once in a while I enter a race. To call them "races" is a little bit inaccurate however since to most people a "race" implies trying to run faster than other people. That would never happen in my case. I am a slow and methodical runner. Entering a race just gives me a training focus and an added motivation to get myself out and running regularly. Jill also helps with that.

I saw this on facebook recently and I just about hurt myself laughing. So totally me! Even Jill speeds up a little bit when faster runners pass us. I know she is wishing for a faster partner.

Being the first day of the year I felt obligated to get in a long run today. It didn't hurt that it was beautiful sunny, low 60's with a breeze through the trees while I ran. Lots of people were exercising probably for the same reasons. When I run my mind usually wanders in many directions.  Rarely does my schedule or my to do list enter my head, usually just random thoughts. Being New Year's Day and the first day of 2012 my thoughts were more philosophical today.

This area is relatively flat. Especially compared to Vermont. I always found training program that called for "hill days" as humorous. For a Vermont runner every day is hill day! The bike path that I run has a few places with gradual rolling hills. On the out portion of my out-and-back route I found myself grinding my way up a long hill. On the way up the hill I was wishing I had eaten fewer cookies over Christmas. I was also telling myself how nice it would be when I came back and got to run down that rolling hill.

However on the way back I realized that I had not noticed the easier portion of the run. Then I got to thinking about dog training (what a surprise right?!) and life in general. We notice when life is a struggle and when things are not going right. But during the moments when things are going well we don't notice it and blow right through it, focused on our goal.  I think I am a fair and patient trainer, experience has taught me how much more effective and enjoyable it is to be so. However the scientist in me tends to focus probably too much on a goal and over analyze my dog's performance and especially my own performance. Every year a large group of us that belong to an online dog forum post our dog goals for the year. Usually sports related goals involving getting certain conformation and performance titles with their dogs. There is nothing wrong with that in itself and I also have goals for what I want to accomplish. However more importantly, here are my goals for the year:

To try to do a better job noticing the downhill, easy portions of running, dog training and life. I'll see how I do.....


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