I got done with work a little early today because I started my day so early, and instead of pulling my shades and getting under the covers with Chip snuggling beside me, I decided to go for a run. I took yesterday as a rest day, even though it really should have been a cross training day. I wanted to be around Chip as much as possible and let’s be honest – I counted our 3.5 walks as cross training.
I got to McCurdy Track at Harvard and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t open to the public. There was a high school practice going on and several legit-looking runners wearing Harvard gear, both men and women. One woman was finishing up a walk in casual clothes, and left as soon as I arrived. No one said anything the whole time but I felt like I got some funny looks and was being stared at. I ignored it, kept my head down, tried to stay out of everyone’s way, and did my 1-mile warmup at a 9:33 pace, then did 5×400 with 200m recovery walks in between. My 400s were:
- Lap 1 – 2:06
- Lap 2 – 1:53
- Lap 3 – 1:53
- Lap 4 – 1:58
- Lap 5 – 1:53
Without being a math whiz, I can tell you that the first lap I was running an 8:12/mile average pace, while the next 4 laps were all under an 8:00/mile. A teammate told me this is too fast – that I should be running at my 5K or 10K pace – but I’m trying my own thing, seeing how much I can push myself.
I noticed some shin discomfort but not actual pain, so I got home and iced them and my knees and of course my right foot, all while Chip snuggled up next to me.
Speaking of Chip, I downloaded the Wag app and signed him up for his first walk today. Basically the app lets you put in basic info about your dog and it matches you with a nearby available walker – already background-checked and insured. You can schedule walks up to a week in advance or from wherever you are when you realize your pup needs to be let out, as long as you’ve hidden a key. But they also send you a free lockbox so you can always have a key available for walkers. I need to get my landlord’s approval and I have a feeling she’s going to be weird about it. Today I hid a key for the walker before I left for work at the ungodly hour of 6:45am. Around 9:45am, I got an alert that she was on her way. Then I got an alert that the walk had started, and I live-tracked the whole dang thing for 40 distracting minutes at work. I could see every time he peed, except there were only about 9 yellow puddle icons and I know for a fact he peed about 47 times. I could also see a brown turd icon after they had stopped moving for a bit. I was relieved because he didn’t poop on our morning walk, and his stomach has been loud and grumbly (I assume it’s just him adjusting to his new/old food and eating schedule and everything else to get used to). I could see they were about 1/3rd of a mile from my apartment and hadn’t moved much, so I got worried, but I think the app froze. A little while later, I got his “report card” update along with a photo.
Chip is a sweetheart and we had a great walk! It was sunny and pretty warm, and Chip stopped to sniff and pee on every tree. His cone failed to deter him from sticking his head in bushes! We saw some squirrels and he wanted to follow them, but I managed to get him back on track. We saw several other dogs, but kept well clear of them because of the cone. The walk went a little long, and about a block from the house Chip slowed down considerably, but I’m not sure whether it was because he was tired or reluctant to go back indoors! I put him back in the apartment, and hung the leash and the key on the hook.
When I got home about 4 hours later, he greeted me at the door and seemed perfectly content and happy. We went for a short walk, and he zonked out as soon as we got back. I could tell he was tuckered out from meeting someone new and going on an extra mid-day walk, which is exactly the point – as well as breaking up his days. I gave Alice a 5-star review and left her a 15% tip (the first walk was free but would’ve cost me $20).
I will definitely do this again. Not every day – maybe 2-3 days a week depending on my schedule – and for the shorter/less expensive $14/20-minute walks. You can schedule the same walker for a recurring schedule or do it ad hoc. I scheduled his next walk for Thursday at noon, but Alice isn’t available so we’ll see how he does with Thursday’s walker.
Man, isn’t technology great?