Long run with Jake and Abby

Posted: June 8, 2012 in Running, Syracuse Ironman 70.3, Training, Triathlons
Tags: , , , ,

With the longest run behind me in my countdown to Ironman Syracuse, one would think I have “easy street” winding down to June 24th. Contrary to that thought, I have two days off scheduled over the next 15 days. After this weekend’s bike/run race rehearsal is done, then the volume tapers off. There will still be some speed/pace work to pay attention to.

Last night’s weekly long run was to go 105 minutes with a few miles done at race pace. I was feeling a little flat after doing intervals the day before. Coupled with irritation with stuff at work, I had less than the desired perspective to apply to the work out. Self-inflicted, but that is where my head was at.

I decided to switch up the long run, and instead bring along my running partners Jake & Abby. Just so happens they are both adorable Weimeraners, and they do love to run. In the past I have taken them as far as 9.5 miles on a hilly route. Abby is typically done at that point. Jake will just keep going. Of course my run pace is little more than a trot for both of them at best.

I decided to run my 8ish mile route on seasonal roads up around Morgan Hill State Forest. With spring turkey season over with, there would be little to no vehicles to contend with. Most of my runs with them require prong collars and 6ft leashes. They do run very well together as long as I let them lead like pack dogs. Without the collars, they would skate me across the road at will. With Jake weighing in at 125 lbs, and Abby at 75lbs, the run could easily get out of hand otherwise. In this case I could let them roam unleashed, although I would have the collars on them, and the leases with me. Even while having them out during fall turkey season, they both tend to stay within 10-60 yards from me.

Taking Jake and Abby out for a run, involves two things they love to do. Running, and riding in the truck. We avoid mentioning “going for a run” as it gets them both very excited. Just putting on running gear gets them wound up.

The evening was cool, and calm, a perfect night for a long run. I headed into the forest at my long run pace, quickly settling into a nice rhythm. Jake and Abby enjoyed themselves as they ran back and forth. The 8+ mile route likely ended up being 12-14 miles for them. Jake would find every mud puddle and ditch there was to trot through. Abby would trot through half as many. Jake acts very much like a young boy out playing. As the miles passed, the dogs continued to enjoy themselves running from the roadways into the woods, hoping to chase up a chipmunk or songbird. 80 some minutes later, all three of us ended up back at the truck. I put in a good endurance workout, Abby was done, and as usual, Jake would love to keep on running, all the while looking for something to hunt up.

The evening workout improved my mood, and I was better for having done so. Jake and Abby had a grand old time. It is one of my favorite routes, and the dogs just love the freedom to run along unleashed. Just what was needed to balance out the day, and enjoy quality time with our four legged family members!

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