Friday, May 3, 2013

The Long Run is not for sprinters

When I started running in the fall, I just ran the way that I intuitively ran. This worked out really well until I started running 7+ miles. It was then that I discovered that I ran like a sprinter, springing about on the balls of my feet.

As I started getting close to running a half marathon, my knees hurt and my calves were constantly in excruciating pain. I started reflecting and realized that I had developed bad habits that would hamper my distance running efforts. In a short run, you can get away with sloppy form. In a long run, your muscles will eventually become exhausted. At this point you are very likely to develop an injury.

One of the things I realized I was doing is swaying side to side and bouncing up and down. This was tiring my muscles faster because it took more work, and it was putting a lot of lateral stress on my knees. So, I started looking ahead to a stationary object in front of me. If I could keep that object from bouncing around, I knew that I was directing more of my effort into moving me forward.

At work, I’ve been exhausted lately. I have found it challenging to do the right things quickly enough. It is high time that I look ahead, find a landmark, and do my best to keep it in the center of my field of vision. I’ve moved away from the sprinter’s race, and it’s time that I start using techniques that lead to success in the Long Run.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Litter Box Miscalculation

IMG_1722We have two dogs. One is quite large, and the other is very small. You can see them in the picture below. You can tell which is which because the small one is on the left. That’s Abby. The black one is “A Boy Named Sue”.


IMG_1724Abby does not have accidents in the house, however when we crate trained her she had a difficult time holding her bladder all day. So, we did the only logical thing we could do. We litter trained her. The litter box on the left is Abby’s. You can tell that it’s hers because it is much smaller than the cat’s litter box. This makes sense because our cat is approximately four times the size of our little dog.

Litter training Abby has worked out really, really well. Of course, it was logical to litter train Sue when we got him. So that’s what did! When he was little, we taught him to go potty on command and then we transitioned him to the litter box. When we started leaving him in a large pen in the garage, we got him a large litter box since he had gotten so big. Everything generally seemed to work out ok.

We may have miscalculated something just a wee bit. To Sue, any litter box is a litter box. If you really have to pee, the litter box can save you. This works great when it’s the huge litter box out in the garage. The other night we heard the telltale sound of running water. Gushing, really. So we raced into the laundry room and found Sue making a valiant attempt to use the litter box, but failing miserably all over the floor.

Next time maybe we’ll reconsider the whole litter training thing when the dog is going to develop a gallon sized bladder.