Back in my salad days, I used to be quite the runner. I have talked at great length about my lack of athletic ability. Baseball, tennis, volleyball – any sport that involves hitting things with things – were moments of extreme mortification. The only sport I ever played was soccer. Soccer was easy, especially since I only ever played midfield. All I had to do was run. For some bizarre reason unknown to me now, I loved to run back then. I even loved my school’s annual cross-country meets. I loved it so much I would get up obscenely early in the morning to train. The year I made regionals was one of the happiest moments of my youth. That year I got to run on real cross-country trails.
A disgusting amount of years later… I do not love to run. Not even remotely. But some part of me really wishes I could recapture the joy I had for it when I was younger. When the first K9 Kamp Challenge was posted last week I saw it as an opportunity to give it a try.
Maybe I should have started smaller.
Shiva and I had fun – okay, Shiva had fun and I sucked it up – completing our first challenge over the weekend. Since we already walk close to 120 minutes per day, I figured it wouldn’t be much of a challenge if we just did that and called it good. I figured we’d just run up some hills instead. Since my city was basically built on one giant hill there are an abundance of them in our neighbourhood. It still sounded weak, but I thought it would suffice. Turns out, it was the hardest 60 minutes of my life!
I knew I was out of shape, but jeepers! Clearly I need to get back into the habit of running more often. Especially if I am to have any hope of keeping up with Shiva on the agility course. Five points for Shiva, negative ten points for me. She even managed to scarf some garbage while running. And when running uphill wasn’t hard enough, she decided to add in some jumps, just for kicks.
She is such a show off. While I was sweating within milliseconds, she was looking at me like she was about to fall asleep.
I was tempted to cheat and walk the rest of the way but I couldn’t trust my dog not to tell on me. She is the canine version of Richard Simmons. Besides, I could sense the hills taunting me and I couldn’t let them win.
Did all this re-instill my love for cross-country running? Not in the slightest. But it did make it very obvious how much my fitness levels have fallen in the last few years. It also showed me what a great jogging partner Shiva is, even when she is silently judging me. Perhaps if I turn some of our daily walks into walks/jogs I will gradually learn to enjoy it. It’s worth thinking about anyway. After I have another cookie.