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    Master tracker extraordinaire

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    Recent changes to my schedule have given me the opportunity to wait until daylight to get my morning run in.  It’s nice because I am getting a bit more vitamin D and feeling a little less like a mole.

    Of course being out later in the morning takes a little bit of the fun out of running in the snow because I don’t get to make the first set of tracks anymore (or even the second set on those days where I do a double loop of the block).  However, it does add a different dimension of fun in that I can analyse the tracks of those who’ve been before.snow foot prints

    For example, a set of paw prints just barely on the outside of a long groove can only be the feet and belly of Werner, the chubby dachshund that lives around the corner from me – and the set of boot prints beside tells me he wasn’t AWOL.  Footprints that tell me someone is walking tend to have a scuff leading into the heel print when the snow is deep enough for Werner’s belly to leave a groove, yet shallow enough that Werner can still see where he’s going.

    Runner footprints, in contrast, are a nice, crisp shoe print, perfectly defined – unless it is that light, poufy snow that blows out as your foot makes contact – then runner footprints tend to look more like a cross section of a light bulb.  Most of the time you can even tell whether the runner was wearing Yak Traks.

    Of course, all of this fun only lasts until you encounter the sidewalk plough.  Not that I am complaining!  I am just not accustomed to seeing it, given that I used to be long done my run before it was out and about.   Sure, it interferes with my studies to become a master tracker, but hey, how much demand is there for a master tracker of dachshunds, anyway?

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    A runner for just over four years, Karen has already completed a marathon, two half marathons and a variety of 5k and 10k races. She describes her first marathon - the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon last September - as "a nightmare." However, she met a very interesting person in the process - a man named Sydney who was running his 152nd marathon! Although the race didn't go as well as planned for Karen or Sydney, he showed her that no matter how experienced a runner you are, you can still have a bad day. "Does that mean we shouldn't bother to prepare, or maybe just shouldn't bother at all? Of course not!" says Karen. "In the end, it is what we make it." We like her optimism!

    2 COMMENTS

    1. I have heard rumours of a new TV show’s casting call for “Dachshund Tracker”. The runner’s footprints let me know that I am not alone in a sport where winter training can be a bit lonesome. : )

    2. Following footsteps in the snow is so fun. I like to see if my stride is at the same pace as the runner who ran before me. Happy winter running in the sun!

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