2,959 Miles Walked!

Thanks for walking with us all year long!

It’s here-the last Walking Challenge post. It has been an interesting year and a lot of fun walking with you all. As a group we walked an amazing 2,959 miles! Whoohoo! You guys all rock and I’m so happy we did this challenge together. What an accomplishment!

We ended the year with 326 miles. Those last 39 miles eluded us, but it surprisingly it doesn’t bother me at all. As I looked back through the photo’s of the walks we took I know the Walking Challenge did exactly what I set out for it it do-it got us out and walking. I’m thrilled with all the fun we had and hope you all feel the same way!

I want to give a special congrats to Dare and her gang-they achieved an amazing feat and finished out the year with 1002 miles! That is so amazing! Carrie, Tanner and Oliver also blew us away with 549 total miles since they joined us in April. Both teams not only met but exceeded their goals and their loyally keeping me up to date all year really kept me going. Congrats guys!

I started out thinking I’d post a few of my favorite photo’s from the whole year, but it ended up being so many that I decided to slideshow it instead. We walked so many beautiful places all over the state, with friends and family. I couldn’t be happier with how our Challenge turned out. Thanks for joining me and supporting me all year long!


2011 Walking Challenge Winds Down

There is officially only one week left in the 2011 Walking Challenge.

Wow! I find it hard to believe there is only one week left in 2011! The Walking Challenge is a complete success for me. It helped motivate me which was my purpose in starting it and I think it did the same for many others.

I’ve connected with so many new readers and walkers, met many new blogging 4legged friends and been inspired by everyones’ determination and success.

I’ve debated extensively wether to make a 2012 challenge and I’m sorry to say I decided I just don’t have the time to organize it and keep up with everyone as you deserve. Life changes so much in any year and my life has changed more this year than any other since the year I got married. With all the changes I just don’t feel as an organizer I can give another challenge what it and you deserve.

We’ll still be walking and training. I’m still going to set a goal for us, but it will likely be centered around much more training activity. At least for the first few months of the year. My plan is to set quarterly goals that will work with the classes the dogs and I are both taking and the goals I have now that I’m professionally training. More on that later, I’m sure.

We check in this week with 319 miles. Most of our winter miles aren’t getting done in pure walking, but in short walks with lots of training, but were still plugging along.

I hope you all have a good last week of walking this year. I appreciate the loyalty and determination you’ve shown to support me in the Walking Challenge this year. Most of all I hope you had fun!


Early Morning Training

After all your outpouring of support and appreciation of course I can’t give up blogging! I’m not promising you’ll get anything intelligent out of me, but I’ll try to keep you updated on the goings-on around here.

Yesterday we went to work with Thehusbandy. We’ve taken the dogs driving truck before, but I can’t remember if I posted about it or not. Usually I end of working on those days and it’s not as much fun for the pups, but my back has been really messed up lately so I played the wimp card so Magnus and I could go exploring. We went to a really pretty park with huge tree’s. Of course my camera battery was on it’s last legs so I only got a few pics, but I think they’re pretty cute ones. I’ll post them on a WW one of these days.

It was early and the ground was still frosty. It reminded me of how much I love early morning walks. I used to always walk early with Meeka, but I’ve been lazy this year and almost never got out till evening. There are less people out and about, especially when it’s below freezing like yesterday! Since I’m such a total introvert I really like it when there’s not many people out. It also makes it easier to do “off leash” stuff. (I never really let them off leash unless it’s legal, but I will let them drag their leashes or long-lines so we can work long distance recalls and stuff.)

Magnus has been in a class that is a combo of Beyond Basics stuff and CGC training. His stays are MUCH better. I can pretty reliably get a 15′, 10 second stay now. His back has been bad again so we’ve been doing more down-stays and I worried that would ruin his sit-stay’s, but yesterday he never laid down on a sit-stay once! I’m sure he just didn’t want to put his little naked belly on the freezing ground, I guess that’s another benefit of walking when it’s freezing out!

I'm an easy going guy! I've always loved sticks!

His recall is getting better too. We’ve been practicing recalls with distraction so I call him and when he’s on his way to me I throw a ball or something and if he chooses to come to me we party with treats then I release to go get the ball. It’s been a really good skill for him.

He’s so easy to work with now that his focus is getting better. We have a good rhythm where he works and then I release him to “go sniff”. If he chooses to keep working we work some more, but in the spirit of GMAB if he doesn’t thats okay too. He loves to play and I find this makes working easier and more fun since he needs lots of breaks to keep in the game. He’s also so easy to reinforce with play. I didn’t have toys with me yesterday so I just grabbed a stick and we played fetch. He’s turned out to be a really fun boy! I’m thrilled with where our relationship is and where it’s going.

I have to thank you all for your kindness again. I’ve been catching up with all your blogs and am happy to have joined this blogville community!


I Came Out of Hiding For the Walking Challenge

I’ve been in a blogging quandary these last weeks. . . Obviously I haven’t been blogging and honestly I didn’t know if I was even going keep the blog online. I always feel bad neglecting it and all of you as readers, so should I. . .

Bid you all adieu and shut it down? Or let it rest quiet and come back later? Perhaps I should have at least posted we were taking a blog-cation, but not knowing what I was going to do made me do nothing. Plus Real Life has just been too crazy to even believe.

I’ve felt especially bad for neglecting the 2011 Walking Challenge. It’s coming to an end and I know there are a few our there still plugging away with us. I just didn’t want to let it just wind down with no acknowledgment of how great you all have been.

The thing that decided me was the kind comments that are still coming in. You guys are the best! Carrie, Tanner and Oliver delivered the deciding comment when they loyally checked in with their miles even though I’ve obviously dropped the ball. If my math is right (and I really hope it is!) they have 488 miles and as Carrie says, “One month left…..and we keep walking!” Thanks Carrie!! I really appreciate the boost I needed to come out of hiding!

I know Carrie, Tanner and Oliver aren’t the only ones who have been plugging away. Dare and Marie are creeping up on 1000 miles. 1000 miles!! Can you believe it? It’s amazing. Though we don’t have anywhere near 1000 miles we’ve been chipping away at our goal and were happy to crack 300 miles with 302 miles as of today.

I’m happy we did this Walking Challenge. It helped us get out and about when I may not have wanted too, and I’ve LOVED all the support we got from all of you. So. . .

I came out of hiding, how ’bout you Walking Challenge members update me on how it’s going? Even if you decided to stop I’d still love to hear what you enjoyed through the year. . .

Got miles? Let’s hear them!!

(If I have your total miles wrong PLEASE correct me! I really need your help to make sure what I have is accurate. Thanks!)


Bring Us Your October Walking Challenge Miles!

We finished up October with a grand 251 miles. I’m pretty happy with that! How ’bout you all? Getting out there with your pups?

There are officially only two months left in the 2011 Walking Challenge. For us that means we need 114 miles in 61 days. Honestly I don’t know if we’re going to make the miles. Honestly I don’t care! We have had so much fun this year. Looking back I can’t believe all the things we’ve done!

Walks, hikes, travels and biking have all played a part in our miles thus far. We’ve faced injuries, Maizey’s anxiety, rain, snow and heat. None of it stopped us so far and I don’t plan on quitting now! I’m going to finish up the year and no matter what that final number ends up being I’m proud of us.

I’m proud of all the Walking Challenge members! You guys kept us going. No matter what the goals are we’ve all achieved so much and I thank you all for supporting us!

Even if you’ve decided not to finish up the year I hope you all had fun. To me it’s been a great thing and I hope you all feel the same!

So on this un-Monday miles report I leave you with some pictures from our weekend. We had a great weekend of travel and hiking. We went to one of my most favorite places on earth and based on the hours it took me to de-sticker and de-mud the dogs I’m guessing they had a blast!
(I apologize for the quality of the pictures, I got a new camera and haven’t figured out all the kinks just yet. It was just too great a day not to share though so I’m posting them anyways.)

To be continued tomorrow in Wordless Wednesday. . .


Monday Miles: 207 Miles

I’m happy to report we got out of our slump and log in with 207 miles. It feels great to have passed the 200 mile mark. I feel like no matter what happens the Walking Challenge is a success for us. I’m sure I’ve never walked over 200 miles with any of my dogs in a year.

I’m hoping to hear from everyone since it’s a new month. We really have accomplished so much and with the last months of the year upon us I hope we all push through the winter and feel like we finish the year successful. As far as I’m concerned we’ve all done great!

Since I’m all out of words tonight I leave you with the frolicking monkey’s who also think we’ve all done fabulous with our Walking Challenge!


Calling All Members of Our Walking Challenge Support Group

I’ve fallen off the Walking Challenge Wagon.

I haven’t had a decent walk in two weeks. We’re still getting some miles here and there but nothing that’s feels dedicated or is going let us finish our miles by the end of the year. This week we haven’t walked at all.

So I’m recruiting help. One of you wise WC members (I think it was Carrie, sorry if I’m wrong.) once described the challenge as a “dog walkers support group”, well guys I need support!

It really, really matters to me to make our miles. Though you’d never know it when it comes time to walk. Sigh. So let me tell you what’s happening and maybe as I tell my support group it’ll help me get inspired.

Work. I love my new job, but as anything new tends to do it’s taking a lot of my physical and mental energy. I’m also looking at getting my CCPDT certification and my CAP1. So a lot of my online time has gone to reading and researching those things. Also I’ve been an evening walker since mornings have never been my friend, but now with work in the evenings that’s harder. It’s getting dark at like 7 and I just don’t feel safe walking after it’s dark any later than that.

I’m writing a bit for a local paper so my blogging time has been going to that. I’m thrilled with that opportunity and it doesn’t take much time but it’s more of a mental thing again, since it’s one more thing in my head. My first column was called First Things First if you want to check it out.

On a personal note I have mono. If you’ve never had mono you can’t really believe how exhausted it makes you. Consequently I’ve been spending a lot of my non-work, non-home hours resting. That’s been a huge factor this last month. That’s been one of the things that’s been hard to figure out, cause I want to make my miles, but I’m having a hard time getting out the door. I think just not feeling good has a lot to do with that.

So. . . there’s what’s up. Now what am I going to do with it? Hmm. . . Yup, this is where I get to in my head every time too. So. . . Can you sense my lack of inspiration?

Okay, down to business.

Reasons I need to walk:

  • I want to.
  • Magnus needs too.
  • Maizey’s getting to the point where she may be able to walk a bit more.
  • Winter’s coming and I really want to be in a good routine since winter challenges me all on it’s own.
  • I really want to finish what we all started. It matters a lot to me.
  • I’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment from succeeding.
  • I committed to all of you and don’t want to let the team down.
  • It works with other goals, like losing weight.
  • It’s good for my physical and mental health and will help me get my strength back.

Wow! That’s a lot of reasons! So let’s see where we’re at. We have 14 weeks left. We need 173 miles to make our goal. That’s 12.3 miles a week. 1.75 miles a day.

That should be doable, but I’m not feeling too committal right now. I guess that’s my story. Now, I’m hoping someone has some inspiring suggestions for me on how to get this done.

How’s it going for all of you? I haven’t heard from anyone since I haven’t been doing Monday Miles, so can we get back on track together? What are you doing to stay motivated and finish up the year?

I feel better just writing this and as I come up with some inspiration I’ll share with you, but please let me hear your ideas too!