My running this week has been terrible.
Not terrible as in, “I’ve felt bad on all my runs.” More terrible as in, “Ooops… I’ve kind of slacked off and not really done much running this week.”
I ran Tuesday night and felt great, but then the winds settled back into the valley and I just couldn’t bring myself to head out in the 55-60mph gusts. And treadmill sounded just as horrible as the winds. Then yesterday morning, I was just flat out lazy and didn’t run!
But today I was eager and ready to get out and run. I wanted it… NEEDED it even. I didn’t exactly have a set amount of mileage I was planning to achieve, just wanted to go run.
So I headed out shortly after waking this morning, marveling at the beautiful day and how it was the perfect temperature. I’m not even entirely sure what the temperature was at that time, but I’d guess around the mid-50’s. The sun was shining, there were some thin clouds high in the sky… everything seemed right.
I started to run and as I got to the first street that I could have turned on to create a loop back to my house, I wasn’t ready to turn yet. I wasn’t ready to turn at the second street that created a loop either. So I kept going, deciding to explore some new areas on foot.
I turned onto a road that is just outside a golf course community and was running along, enjoying my day when suddenly…
The unmistakable feeling of dog paws nailing me in the center of my upper back.
I stumbled a little, slowed down my pace to more of a shuffle and turned my head to see what unexpected and unwelcome visitor was interrupting my morning.
It was a giant white poodle… Seriously, this thing was really tall! With perfectly groomed, puffy white fur. As soon as I looked at the dog, it started doing this crazy bunny hop around me, then stood on its hind legs in front of me while waving its paws in my face.
“Um… hi dog… go away now. I don’t really want you here.” I was mumbling weird things at the dog, trying not to anger the dog but to also encourage it to go home.
And then I turned and saw an elderly gentleman standing about 30 feet away. He was sporting a Mr. Rogers-esque cardigan and a jaunty little cap, watching all this in amusement. He got a big grin on his face when we made eye contact, raised his right arm in the air and started to wave it vigorously.
Then he called to the dog, “Come on pal, let’s leave her alone now.”
I decided that this was the point where I should turn back toward my home. I crossed the street and the poodle tried to follow me. I waved it back toward the owner, trying to encourage it to stay there and not continue with me.
I was getting kind of hungry by this point, because I hadn’t eaten before heading out and the poodle pouncing seemed to stimulate some hunger cues. So the whole second half of my run back home seemed really long, partly because I was hungry and partly because it was all uphill.
I ran 7.11 miles today, according to my lovely Garmin. And my wonderful husband provided me with pancakes post-run, so that’s always a nice reward!
At least this time while being jumped by a dog I wasn’t actually bitten and didn’t end up with holes in my clothing. But still… people should keep their dogs on leashes or in yards with fences.