Last Saturday marks the first day Frankie has joined me as my running partner. We did a one mile lap around the Mineral Palace Park. After the mile I dropped him off at home and did my second mile alone. This morning I took Frankie with me for a 2 mile run. He did pretty well considering his activity level has consisted of chasing squirrels for the past couple years. During mile 1 he was almost pulling me along as we ran through a grassy stretch. Towards the end of mile 2 Frankie started to lag behind me. I think 2 miles is his max right now. As he gets more comfortable with the idea of running with me and his body acclimates to the constant activity I will increase our mileage. Not only is this going to be a test to his endurance but it will also test and strengthen his manners on the leash...I hope.
Frankie is my 6 year old English Cocker Spaniel. This goof ball has been my companion since he was a baby puppy just old enough to be away from his mom. Back when he was a puppy I lived in Reno, Nevada. On a regular basis I would take him to the dog park to let him run around the huge field and socialize with other dogs. His favorite friends were a huge, black Newfoundland and a puppy mastiff who didn't realize how long and lanky he was. The way these dogs would play with Frankie was hilarious! The Mastiff would swing his hips around and knock Frankie on the ground and sit on him. The Newfoundland would bound around as Frankie tried jumping for his ears. Frankie would run around the grassy field, bounding here and there, playing with all the dogs.
Then, I moved back to Oregon and my ex went back to Reno. After this, my free time went out the door as I worked from 8:30am to10pm or sometimes until midnight. I had two jobs, American Family and Starbucks. I still took Frankie for walks around the block, runs at parks and to even to the dog park whenever possible. We would go on hikes around the Gorge and around Silverton Park. Unfortunately, he didn't get as much exercise and attention as he needed. What was worse was that I lived in an Apartment so he would spend those long days alone. He managed all right but many of his social skills and training died.
Now I live in Pueblo, Colorado in a house with a big yard. Frankie spends his days running back and forth along the fence line chasing squirrels and napping under the small sunflowers by the front fence. I take Frank for walks every so often but I have honestly earned an F in that department. Since I am planning to add more short runs spreadout through my week I think it is a great time to break him into running with me.
Frankie before his last trip to the groomers. What a shaggy dirty dog! :)
If I can run 2 miles at least 3 or 4 mornings a week that will knock out 6-8 miles. Then, if I can run Saturday and Sunday making Sunday my long run. I should be able to get 20 miles in each week. I know some will get more than others but if I am in this mind set and have a plan for when my options to run are...perhaps I will have more motivation to get out there.
2 miles is quick! Frankie will appreciate it and my body will also love it. I feel so much better after a run! The only part I still need to work out in my mind is my eating schedule... that is more complicated. Perhaps it is time to plan some crockpot meals! This term will be a test to how planned and organized I can be! Bare with me as I struggle through the weeks and months to come!
This is Frankie and I on a hike in Oregon back in 2008
Frankie and his old friend Tyson. They were best friends when I lived in Reno. Look how small by pup is! :)