Thursday, June 7, 2012

Run Dedicated to Sam

My run tonight went pretty well. Six miles. I had every intention of getting up this morning to run with the 6B46 crew, but the alarm went off and I couldn't bring myself to get out of bed. Since I had to be at the AEA all day, I knew the run was then going to get put off all day and would loom over my head. We are in the process of remodeling our basement and, with the help of my brother David, got it primed and I tried out our paint color in the closet. Eight o'clock rolled around and my run still was not even begun, so I put away the paint and got to it. Other than being buggy, the run went just fine. My right leg below my knee was tight, but nothing too terrible. I love vacation, but there is something to be said for routine. I really feel out-of-whack right now. My body is trying to get back to normal eating and exercise. I knew that if I did not get in this run I would regret it big time. I have been getting in around thirty miles a week and would like to work up to forty, so I need to stick to my running plans. Marathon training has begun, but I am still in the process of finding a plan. I have a Jeff Galloway book,  but I have heard good things about Hal Higdon and his running plans. Let me know if you have a suggestion. Less than sixteen weeks!

Okay, so I will explain more about my overall reasons for blogging later. For now, I would like to take a page from other runners' books and dedicate tonight's run to my consistent running partner - Sam. I know, I know, Sam is only a dog. But, lacking offspring at the present, she is like my child. David and I got Sam fifteen months ago from a farm outside of Welton, Iowa. My sister Adrienne actually found her and picked out one of her sisters for my sister Erin. When I heard about this, I knew I the time was right for us to get a dog also. I am not a split-decision type of person; I take quite a while to make a decision. Not this time. I left school right after the students left and David and I drove and picked her out. She was the last golden retriever there, so I like to think it was meant to be.
Sam when she was really little. Now she will eat shoes on a whim.

On our way home, David and I realized we had absolutely no way to take care of a dog; we had to buy food and a kennel. I sent David into Pet's Mart and he came out with the largest kennel available, saying, "Well, the lady said she would grow into it!" Sam shook the entire way home. It was her first time being away from her family, her first car ride, and she had her first bath. We tried to get her to sleep in a clothes basket, but to no avail.

David and I had no idea what to do with her the next day. We both had to work, and so I left her in her kennel with no food or water because she wasn't house broken and I didn't want her messing up her kennel. (At this time we still did not have a name for her!) My sister Jessica, who worked at the school with me, told me I should have at least left her with water because she would get really thirsty during the day. Well, I thought I had made a terrible mistake, so I called Adrienne and begged her and Will to hang out at my house with Sam so that she wouldn't be lonely. Needless to say, I learned that she is perfectly content not having food or water during the day; she doesn't even eat treats I leave for her.

So, that was the beginning. Jump ahead a year and Sam has become my best running partner. Truth be told, sometimes I skip out on group runs because I know she needs the exercise and one of the reasons I got her was to be my running partner. That being said, I have a feeling that if we ever got attacked, it would be me protecting her; she is afraid of loud, sudden noises, large bushes, unfamiliar places...most things that present themselves while running. Sam is the reason I ran this winter and often becomes my excuse for going out for a run after a long day at work. Sometimes I wonder if we would be better off without a dog; we certainly would be richer. But she adds enjoyment to my day and brings a smile to my face (and hopefully to others as her entire body is out of the window while going to the dog park!). No matter if we go three miles or ten miles, Sam is always up for a run.

Sam and her sister Buttercup. BC lives in Minneapolis.

Sam and me getting ready to go running!

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