Another month is already past, and an another month in Luna’s training. I must say training so far is great. We are going through a lot of first times, great progresses, and a lot of fun, which is the most important!
Training with friends
In March or April, we had realized in writing the month summary, that we did not train with friends at all and it was really important to do it more. This month we got lucky to train with friends twice. We are lucky to have a few friends close by who do run with their dogs. If you want to check them out on Instagram, they are @canadianhusketeers and @k9riverracers.
I cannot express more how important it is to train with friends from time to time. It is great for the dogs, as it challenges them. Luna does not like not being first, so it gets her to go harder to always be in front of her friends. And it teaches them to run with other people and other dogs. It is important if you want to run races, but even if that is not in your plans, it teaches them not to go towards the other dog, in the event you would encounter someone hiking or running with their dog.
We bought bikes!!! With my knee injury (that I will talk about later in this post), it was important for me to be able to do something with Luna. The bike allows me to try bikejoring, but also just to come along with JC and Luna when they are canicrossing.
I will develop more about how to start bikejoring in a specific post later, but the first step is to get your dog used to the bike. The dog must be confident with the bike and not afraid of it. So the first step we did was to get Luna along with the bike at home, by leaving it in the main living area so she could see it, go and sniff it, and realize it is nothing to be afraid of.
Then we took the bike for a run. We had a nice family run that afternoon. JC and Luna canicrossing and me on the bike in front of them. Luna was so excited by the bike!! All she wanted was to run faster to get to me.
With the bike, comes bikejoring!! We ordered the bikejoring equipment from Nahak Sports. Again, I will do a specific blog post about bikejoring later, where I will explain all about the equipment.
And we went bikejoring for the first time. Luna was so fast!! She understood right away that she had to go upfront and run just as canicross. Our first bikejoring session was about 4k with an average 17km/h, which is quite fast for a first time. Luna will now have to learn that she should not go full speed from the start, but manager her speed to keep her energy on the long run.
I then went on a bikejoring run with Luna, just the two of us, to see how it was. It was different than with JC. Luna is so used to run with JC, that we are going to have to learn how to run together. I realized afterwards when checking the go pro video with JC, that I was not giving the commands at the right time. But in the same time Luna was not listening to me as much as she does with JC. It is going to be a different training with me, learning how to work together, but that is super exciting and I cannot wait to see this little girl enjoy bikejoring with me!
A little update on my knee injury. If you follow us for quite a while, you know that I (Luna’s mom) have been injured in my knee for a few months now. After a few months of physic and rest, the pain was still here, and it was even bothering me just walking or hiking. This is why JC took care of all of Luna’s canicross training so far.
I got injections of steroids and cortisone in my knee. The injection is quite painful at the moment they do it. Then you feel really bad for the first couple of days. Like really bad. I was limping pretty bad and my whole body was so tired at night after a day of limping. The pain was getting better day after day, slowly but it was getting better.
Now I can clearly see that it is much better, which is a really good news. I will need to do some strength work to make sure it does not come back.
This is also the reason why we got the bikes and I will try bikejoring. Even if with the injections I am supposed to feel really better and not feel the pain anymore, it is a recurring injury for me in the left leg. It started a few years ago with the hip, then I had the food and now the knee. So I am not getting a lot of hopes that I will go back to running without injury. So I decided to step back from the running and go into biking instead, which should be easier on my body. And it gives me the opportunity to share something with Luna.
In Canada we pretty much jump from winter, to just a few weeks of Spring and then right into Summer. The temperatures are quite high already, which is a bit warm for huskies. Luna is definitely getting slower, and getting tired faster just on regular walks. Which means we have to adapt our trainings. We try to go now on early mornings or evenings runs, so the temperatures are a bit cooler. We also always try to choose a trail that has access to water. We live in an area where we could easily have either the lake or a river near our trails. We always get Luna to go in the water to cool down after the runs. But we also need to find a nice and light backpack to carry water when we go on our runs, as it is super important for the dog to stay hydrated on runs.
Now let’s talk about races!!
We are registered for our first race on June 10th. It is just a 1k fun run with your dog. I’m pretty sure nobody will really be canicrossing, more like people who go jog with their dog. But it was an easy one to choose for the first race, as it is just 1k so Luna can easily do it and it is close to our place so we don’t have to travel. We are really excited for it!! We will of course record it on the GoPro and write a blog post to tell you all of it!!
We also registered for a few races in the fall.
The first one will be in the end of September, a 1.9k canicross race in Quebec. The hotel is booked, we are ready to go!! This one also has a 1.9k bikejoring run, but we are still hesitating. Should we just do the canicross, or can Luna run the bikejoring, rest for 2hours and go again on the canicross?
The second one will be the Bristol Dryland race in the end of October. It is a pretty famous drylands race in the area. People from the US travel for this one, and the top competitors will be there. This one we know we won’t do a great rank, but we will go there for the opportunity to learn from the bests. We will do the canicross race only probably, but we will watch the bikejoring race and learn.
The last one we are still hesitating. We may go in the US for a race. We would meet up with some IG accounts that we really love and that we talk to almost daily. It would be a huge drive so I guess we will decide soon.
Objectives for June:
- Our first race!!! We are super excited and cannot wait for our first race
- Develop bikejoring/training with Flo
- I guess we will also adjust to the temperatures. With the summer coming up, we may not be able to train as must as we did in the winter/spring, so we will see