Outdoor Running Adventures

Running in northern BC with my dog Kobi


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There’s Something in Air

aspen trees

The trees were starting to turn colour 10 days ago

The last few weeks totally got away on me.  I don’t know if it’s because the days are now officially getting shorter or if I’m just officially less organized.  Likely the latter.

I did help plan, organize and volunteer at a local race last weekend so I was pretty swamped preparing for that.  This race is a totally cool event  – yes, I’m biased.  It all happens on our community trail.  Folks get to choose from 4 different races:  half marathon, 10km run, 5km run and 5km walk.  There are also 3 kids races (500m for the little little guys, 800m for the slightly less little guys and 1km for the almost big guys).  Of course dogs are welcome and totally encouraged to come along for the run.  Finishers, even the dogs, get dog tags.

dog tail and culvert

Kobi in a culvert on the trail that the race is held on.

dog in autumn

Kobi modelling the autumn leaves

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I had to do some work related travelling which always results in an overload of domestic chores when I get home.

I have made time to run in the amazing fall weather.  We’ve had some cooler days (like today), but for the most part it’s been pretty epic.  That’s what makes me wonder if perhaps there is something in the air this time of year.

I usually don’t experience my little runner’s high until about an hour after a run, but lately 15 minutes into any given run outside I’m feeling pretty happy.  Maybe it’s just a sensory overload caused by the colours and the smells.

I don’t know about where you live, but up here autumn has a pretty distinct smell and it kind of smells good (kind of like rotting leaves, bear poop, mushrooms and fermenting high-bush cranberries).  Maybe it’s just mould spores boring into my grey matter making me think I’m happy, but whatever it is I’ll take it as I know what’s around the corner weather-wise.

dog and stick

Random action shot

Do you get amazing autumn colours?  How far do you have to run to experience a running high?  Does your dog like culverts?  Ever planned or helped plan a running event?  Does autumn “smell” where you live?

aspen colours

This is what it looked like yesterday

 

 

 

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Are Ravens Kind of Like Flying Bears?

I ask that because Kobi despises ravens (in case you’ve forgotten, Kobi is my dog).

Yesterday we were heading out for our scheduled 4:37PM walk (Kobi makes sure I stick to the schedule) and she charged down the yard all barky and bouncy with her hackles up. I thought it was a bear by her reaction, turns out it was a raven.  She proceeded to chase it all around the yard and eventually down the driveway, then down the road and then back up the road.  That’s why I questioned if perhaps she thinks they’re flying bears.  You see, Kobi also despises bears.

dog chasing a raven

Kobi chasing the raven back up the road

The raven tortured her for a good 10 minutes and then she was finally ready to proceed with our scheduled walk.  I had wanted to avoid the upper trail as I have been getting that weird creepy feeling when walking there as there is a bear around.  I opted for the “safer” trail by the road.

Before we even got to the main road I saw a large black blobby thing – bear.  That put a bit of a dent in my walking plans.

black bear

The black blob is Mr. Bear

Kobi was oblivious as she was still on the raven-high and she was also eating grass.  She’s part bovine I think.

black bear and a dog

Kobi chomping on grass just like the bear was

 

I turned around before Kobi saw it and went all crazy and we opted for the “scary” trail up the road.

Later that evening husband let Kobi out for her evening pee and poo.  He didn’t see that Mr. Bear was hanging out between the shed and the raspberry patch, but Kobi did and she kicked it into full on action hero.  She even scared the bear up a tree.  She was making up for her earlier oversight.  We got Kobi back into the house and she eventually cooled off.

Sheesh, I hate this time of year.  The bears are working hard to fatten up before winter so they seem to come out of the wood-work.

Do ravens torment your dog? Do you even have ravens where you live?  Would you like to have bears in your yard?  

 

 


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Running Intervals with your Dog

Thanks to the snow fall event last week my plans to run intervals were put on hold for a few days .  I was optimistic that it would melt by Friday, but it didn’t.

The trail was still snow-covered so I decided I’d run intervals on the road.  First problem, I must run with my dog as it just wouldn’t be right to exclude her.  However, running intervals with her on a leash is not much fun for either of us.   I decided if I ran the same piece of road back and forth, Kobi could run on the trail beside the road when I ran west.  When we ran east, she’d be on the leash and unhappy only half the time.  That didn’t seem so bad.

First interval Kobi ran on the leash and was okay.  Second interval I let her off so she could run on the trail while I ran on the road.  That didn’t last long.  There was a pile of traffic exactly at that moment and it made me way too nervous having her off leash.

Third interval, Kobi attempted to trip me about 4 times.  She was getting even with me.  Fourth interval was uneventful. During interval five, Kobi decided that she was going to run behind me and provide resistance.   I swear I heard her laughing.  On the final interval I took her off the leash and she ran on the trail (there was no more traffic).  She was happy again and we were both filthy messes covered in road grime – no photo – I was too cranky.

dog in a truck

Kobi pre Saturday run – her excited face

On Saturday I ran with friends (one who is freakishly fast) and Kobi’s friend Zola the Rhodesian Ridgeback.  We ran the trail in town which still had 2-3 inches of slush on most of it.  First 2 minutes in and I stepped in a hidden puddle (covered in snow) when I went to clean-up Kobi’s first of 3 poops.  That was awesome.  After 20 minutes both feet were equally soaked.

two dogs

Kobi and Zola. That’s mud on Kobi’s nose.

sleeping dog

A happy, sleeping Kobi post-run. I had a post-run nap too.

The snow is mostly gone now and it certainly made for an frustrating interesting week of running.

PS.  The cranes are arriving!  A sure sign of spring now.

sandhill cranes

The sandhill cranes are back!! I think they over-winter in Texas.

Do you cancel work-outs if the weather outside is frightful or do you tough it out?  Ever run intervals with a dog helping/hindering?   Did you know Rhodesian Ridgebacks originated in South Africa and were used to hunt lions?   


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Seriously? It’s April!

I’m speechless….

snow falling

Look what started today?

dog in a snow storm

The snow is actually hurting Kobi’s eyes!

dog in the snow

It snowed 2+ inches in 3.5 hours! And it’s still snowing. At least Kobi is staying clean.

dog and human prints

Snow prints. I’m sick of snow prints.

On the bright side, we’ll get to experience spring all over again….

Please tell me everyone else is having a nice April?  No snow right?  And you’re running in shorts and T-shirts right?  

 


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Liebster Award

Liebster Blog Award

So a little while back, I received some cool news.  HealthyLife.HappyLife informed me she had nominated me for the Liebster Award.  Thank you Healthylife.Happylife!!

Apparently there are rules associated:

  • Acknowledge the nominating blogger – see above
  • List some bloggers with less than 200 followers that you really feel deserve a little blogging love!  See just below this
  • Let all of the bloggers know you’ve nominated them. You cannot nominate the blogger that nominated you!
  • Post 11 questions for the bloggers you’ve nominated to answer – see below the bloggers
  • 11 random facts about yourself – see below below
  • Answer 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you – see below that

Here are the bloggers that I’m nominating:

  • The Parrot in the Power Lines – she lives overseas (currently in Seoul).  I don’t travel out of country much so I love learning about other countries.  Because she lives in these countries she provides insight into culture and sightseeing that you wouldn’t pick-up on just travelling there for a few weeks.  It’s very cool.
  • Girl Runs Wild – Her blog name says it all!  I love how we can connect with runners all over the world just through blogging and how even if we’re in different parts of the world we can relate to each others running experiences.  I also like her writing style and sense of humour.
  • A Fast Paced Life – she lives in New York and does all these cool New York things, plus runs in tons of races (even as a zombie) and in tons of cool places.  Her race recaps make you feel like you were there with her.  Plus, who doesn’t want to live vicariously through someone who lives in New York?

My questions to you bloggers (noted above) should you choose to accept are:

  1. If you could live anywhere in the world (don’t be practical) where would you live?
  2. What is your favourite hobby/pass-time?
  3. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
  4. Dog or cat person?
  5. Provide 4 words that describe you.
  6. What is your favourite food?
  7. What is the scariest thing you’ve ever done (planned or by accident)?
  8. What is your favourite post you’ve written (please provide a link)?
  9. What is your favourite band/singer?
  10. Who is your favourite author or do you have a favourite book or both?
  11. Why do you blog?

Alrighty, so 11 random facts about me…

  1. I don’t eat red meat (except sometimes buffalo jerky).
  2. I have really straight teeth and have never had braces to get them that way.
  3. I eat the same thing for breakfast every day (oatmeal with frozen blueberries).
  4. I could eat the same food for all my meals day in and day out (mostly because I’m lazy).
  5. I prefer tea over coffee (except I like coffee after a long long run).
  6. I have no tattoos.
  7. I have more running clothes and jackets than work clothes and jackets (I often just dress up my running clothes with work shirts and jackets as a result).
  8. I hoard chapstick and lip balm and have one in every jacket pocket, purse and room in the house so there are probably over 40 chapsticks kicking around this place.
  9. All my pets are rescues (3 cats and 1 dog).  The one cat has to live in the shop as she hates other cats and prefers to live alone.
  10. I absolutely cannot watch scary movies, they freak me out, but I’ll walk in the woods in the dark, go figure.
  11. I eat way too much red liquorice.

Now, to answer the questions provided by healthylife.hapylife…

1. Why did you decide to start blogging?

I find myself in funny predicaments and I feel compelled to share those stories.   I was also hoping my folks would read my blog and get a sense of what I was up to, but they haven’t figured out how to follow me yet.

2. What is your favourite post you’ve written? Provide a link!

Probably one of my “earlier” blogs – On a Whim.  I think I’m missing summer activities as we’re in the thick of winter (it was -38C here yesterday).

3. If you could be trapped on an island with any famous individual, dead or alive, who would it be?

Hmmm, so many cool people.  I think I’d have to go with the Dalai Lama.  He’s just so spiritual and kind and wise.  Or maybe Prince.

4. If you and said individual could one have one food on your island, what would it be?

That’s tough because you need a food with everything you need in it (carbs, protein, fat and fibre and stores well), so I’d have to go with brown rice, plus I don’t know if the Dalai Llama eats meat.

5. What motivates you the most?

People who don’t give up regardless of physical challenges they’re faced with.  That always reminds me to be grateful for being healthy and having the ability to run around whenever I want.  Never take your health for granted.  Kobi also motivates me, about three times a day, to walk, run or ski with her.

6. Chicken or the egg?

Chicken.

7. What is your favourite form of physical activity?

Running of course – not counting this year’s New Year’s Day run though.

8. What is your least favourite form of physical activity?

Push-ups.

9. What is one skill you’ve always wanted to learn?

I can’t dive (into water) and I really want to learn how to dive properly.

10. What is your favourite childhood memory?

This memory stands out and I think it’s funny.  I was riding on the handlebars of my older brothers bike and we had found an old boot.  He told me throw the boot as far as I could while he rode the bike while I sat on the handlebars.  I was about 5.  I threw the boot, but went with the boot and skidded across the gravel road on my face.  My brother was convinced we were going to get in serious trouble so I was not to tell mom.  I had a huge swollen lip that was bleeding so of course mom would notice.  When we got home she asked what happened and I said “nothing”.  That’s all I remember.  I think this one is my favourite only because I can remember it so vividly (up until telling my mom nothing happened).

11. What scares you?

Scary movies, wolves, velociraptors, and vampires.

Ta da – done!

dog digging

It just wouldn’t be a post from me without a photo of Kobi


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My Review

Originally submitted at SportChek.ca

Best winter running shoe
By Outside Runner from Fort Nelson, BC on 12/11/2013
4out of 5

Use this shoe when running on packed snow, not on bare roads. Super light and amazing traction in the snow. My feet have never been cold in these (I do wear wool socks in them) and I run outside in up to -30C. The attached gator is awesome and keeps the snow out and warmth in. Don’t wear these inside on wood floors or on wooden decks as the metal spikes leave marks. I do get a slight pinch point on the inside ankle, but put a small piece of foam there to cushion that. Wish they came in women’s sizes so all my friends could get them too.

Salomon Snowcross

(legalese)

Salomon Snowcross

My favorite running shoe for snow.