Mans best friend, runners worst enemy

IMG_1287 - CopyMeet Patch.  Patch was the first dog my brother and I had as kids.  I think I was about 8 years old when we got him and he lived right up until 17!  He was a Border Collie, so liked to chase things – including people, but we were aware of this so kept him on a lead if we were walking in a people-heavy area.

Last night, there was a Wolves game on TV, so I left Dan shouting at the TV whilst I headed out for my threshold run.  The plan said ‘5x5min @ threshold pace with 90sec recovery’.

The run didn’t get off to the best of starts when my Garmin took ten minutes to find satellites so I was left walking around with my watch in the air and looking like a prat in the middle of town!

Satellites found, off I went.  I had a great first five minutes, with a pace of 7:41, leaving me feeling exhilirated and ready for the next 5 minute burst.  90sec recovery at 12:19 pace then another five minutes at threshold pace.  One minute into the run and up ahead, as the track narrowed I could see two adults, approximately in their fifties with two dogs.  They were headed towards me and weren’t far from the end of the narrow section so I continued.  As I got closer they appeared to be dawdling along.  They made no attempt to let me pass on the track and were walking side by side, but with enough gap between them that they took up the whole path with three labrador dogs behind them, including a puppy which, when I had managed to slow to a walk and head up the hedge to get past the couple, decided to chase me off.  It was only a puppy, I knew it wouldn’t bite, but I was worried about falling over it as it yapped and jumped up in front of me continually.  Eventually I had to slow to a walk again and wait until it’s owners came to collect it.

Despite the hassle in the middle of the rep I still managed a 8:39 pace.  Excellent!  Still feeling great, ready for set #3…

12:17 pace 90 second recovery before setting off at speed again.  Up ahead – four dogs, two owners.  Both trying to untangle their dogs from each other.  Great.  I was in a large field, but there wasn’t really another way around the mess of dogs so I slowed my running down a little and gave the heap a wide birth.  Apparentally the best thing to seperate dogs from each other is a runner, because one of the larger of the four dogs gave chase, whilst the other three sat back and watched.  Yet again, I was being jumped up and barked at and almost tripped up numerous times.  This time I stood completely still while the dog jumped up and barked in a rhythm and the owner shouted out “It’s OK, he won’t bite!” before making no real attempt to remove him from me.  Excellent!  Extremely helpful!  Eventually the dog got bored and followed his owner off again but I was thoroughly annoyed and a dog-hater by this point.

Continued with what was left of my third threshold rep to find a plough blocking the end of the field entrance.  I ummmed and ahhhed about turning around but when I saw a collection of dogs in the distance thought otherwise and instead scrambled over the plough to continue my run.

Thresholds 4 and 5 were 8:50 and 8:59.  I’d lost the motivation by this point so my times slid although I still felt great at the end of my run and like I had had a proper workout.

Please, if you have a dog, keep them under control when there are runners about!  I’ve never been bitten but I know people that have.  If you find yourself getting chased, I’ve been told in the past that the best thing to do is to just stop and become ‘boring’ to the dog and eventually they will leave you alone.  It’s always worked for me.  It’s just frustrating when trying to work at a speed session!

In happy news from yesterday though, I finally picked up my ring again after sending it in for getting split a few weeks back.  I’m pretty sure that the jewellers have had it for more time than I have, what with resizing it and then fixing it!

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I also received a package in the post from Fuel after winning a giveaway on Maria’s blog a few weeks back.

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I have been feeling rather uninspired with breakfasts lately and need to jazz them up slightly, so look forward to testing this little lot out in the near future!

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The thoughtful people at Fuel even had something for Bella!

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