Today, I was really not enthusiastic about getting out and running. No real reason or aches/pains stopping, it was more I just didn’t have a lot of interest in running. So I ran anyway.
I wasn’t planning on going fast, just a mile longer than my Tuesday total. The weather was cooperating, although by the end the humidity was getting a little higher and the winds were out of the SE (in my face most of the way back).
Once I got past Bartlett, I could hear some barking and running towards the road in one of the yards as I passed. When that happens I listen a little closer behind me, because all too often it means that a dog miraculously appears in the road behind me.
Yep, I could hear the tap, tap of nails on tar and quickly turned around – a male part Golden Retriever/Lab mix was behind me. It surprised the dog, but it had a ridgeback, it stopped when I turned, started barking and walking toward me stiff legged.
All are signs of a dog that ain’t backing down very quickly. It was about 20 feet away, so I puffed up as big as a 5’7″, 155 pound guy can and in the most commanding voice I can muster yelled at it to “go home” and at the owner to get their fucking dog. I did this several times and the dog stopped advancing at about 10 feet.
No one came out of the house, so I figured that I was going to be dog wrestling, because it seemed to be bracing his back legs to attack, so I crouched down and pointed in the most aggressive voice I could use “go home”. At that point something clicked in his pea brain and he turned and bounded off into the bushes for his house. No, I didn’t hear anyone call him off, but I was glad that he backed down. I really was relieved that the dog decided that I wasn’t worth the trouble.
I really think that I need to start carrying dog spray again, just for cases like this or else a small air horn, which critters ain’t fond of either. I have the pepper spray in the house, so it will be in my belt pouch next time.
This cost me 2-3 minutes and a pretty good adrenaline burger that I needed to slowly burn-off.
Once I got back to running, I thought about how arrogant some people are when it comes to their critters. It is one thing to have your dog under voice command, but quite another to let it out the door and not have a clue what is going on while it is outside. Yeah, I was slightly pissed.
That got me through the next couple of miles – no problem.
However, once I past on the flats, I had to keep playing mental games to get to the Goodhue Road. The body was willing, but the brain was not into it. Once I got to the turn-around, I started fantasy running.
You know where you dream/fantasize about running in a race and what you are going to do.
In this case I am thinking about running the Maine Half Marathon in October and so I fantasized about chasing down the first master’s runner after the turn-around. He was wearing an orange singlet and I focused on the imaginary runner ahead of me on that course.
In my fantasy I had 6.0 miles to catch up, so I could slowly creep up on the age group leader and I did this for the rest of the run, keeping that runner in sight and slowly gaining on him. Once I got in the last 50 yards, I unleashed a powerful kick and flew by him with about 10 yards to go. Not enough time for him to respond and win my age group.
Not that that will happen, but it is a great mental trick to keep your mind focused on the task at hand – finishing a run that I didn’t feel all that much like doing.
The reality is that
Yeah, things that I think about when I think about running or want to keep running when I don’t feel like it. Hehehehe. It is a positive way to get through a tough patch and works for me – even if it isn’t reality.
The dog thing, once it is over doesn’t really bother me all that much. It is something that happens a bit too often out here because I live in a rural area and a lot of dog owners forget that their dogs don’t like other people as much as the owners tend to believe and others (me) don’t like their dogs as much as they do.
However, when a dog doesn’t back down immediately it is a bit more worrisome and takes things to stage 2, where I think about having to defend myself. If I have to, I will. Luckily, today the dog went home and I kept running and it was not out when I came back by the house – yes, I slowed down a little to double-check.
Not the run I expected, but I got in 7.0 miles, although the time was a couple of minutes slower than last Wednesday’s run on the same course, I don’t really think it was all that much slower, due to a certain interruption.
I will take it.