Monday, May 17, 2010
May 15th, 2010 – 6.5 Mile Run
The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”
Today’s run was great! The weather was great and I knew it was going to be a long one, so I was on my 4 and 1 plan. I unlocked Sarah’s leash, so she got to run a little freer and she seemed to like that. At the end of the first 4 minute segment (the half mile mark), I stopped to stretch. Then I was off again. My Achilles Tendon is feeling ok, but I’m taking it easy anyway.
Suddenly, two dogs are fighting to tear down their own fence to get to my Girl. What? Well, I can’t have that!! So I shout my warning, “NO!” but they don’t listen so I aim my pepper spray for the first time ever, with the intent to fire. They are still barking and clawing! If this goes on, they will get out! Then what will I do?! So I throw up a quick prayer and I fire!
The dog whines and they both retreat. I wait for the sinking feeling of horror that would surely come after intentionally causing another living organism pain. I know it was justified. I had to protect my dog and myself. I can feel the tears start to bubble under the surface. As I approach the fence to inspect the damage and apologize to the dogs, I hear myself shouting, “That’s right, Damnit! Stay away from my dog!” Turns out it wasn’t tears bubbling to the surface, but 38 years of bad-ass, angry Black Woman protecting herself and her property. I kept on running….
At the one mile mark, I’m feeling really good. My knees are feeling pretty solid and my AT is hanging in there, so I keep on going. It’s warm out and I discover that I forgot to bring a towel, so my tank top will have to do to mop up the torrents of sweat dripping into my eyes. But it feels good.
At about the half way mark, I cross under the freeway and start the homeward trek. Things are feeling good. Sarah’s following along like a good girl and my knees and AT are even with the program. Taking it easy seems to be doing the trick.
At the 4.5 mile mark, I reach a corner and hear some insane barking and the biggest monstrosity of the German Shepherd species I’d ever seen is trying to jump a 6 foot cinder block fence! What is going on? It’s Spring, so maybe my dog is putting out some crazy pheromones or something, but this dog is really trying to get to her. I turn around and shout “NOooooo!” and in one fluid motion, I release the safety on my pepper spray and fire! The dog immediately retreats.
This time there was no pretense at remorse. I was honestly scared to death and figured we’d better keep moving before the owners of this dog show up. I know if my dog came running into the house with a face full of pepper spray, I’d be looking for perpetrators. I would have been pretty easy to spot. I wasn’t trying to hide, I keep my pepper spray pretty visible, there were plenty of witnesses and let’s face it, if the cops were looking for a 30-something Black female who lives in my town, they would only have a handful of addresses to check out.
At the 5 mile mark, I’m starting to feel the twinge in my AT. It’s not terrible but it’s letting me know that it doesn’t like what I’m doing. The next time I’m stopped at a light, I stretch my calf muscles and it relieves the tension just a bit.
When I’m a little over a mile from home I have another 4 minute segment coming to a close. Typically, I would go ahead and run through the upcoming break since I’m so close to home but my knee is starting to ache a little bit too, so I go ahead and take the 1 minute break.
I take the last half mile at a sprint. When will I learn? Turns out the lesson wasn’t too hard on me this time. I’m a little achy, but nothing a quick stretching session won’t fix. I feel good and I learned two things: (1) Listening to my body is always the right thing to do and (2) if you step to me and my dog with some canine nonsense, you’re gonna get hurt!