Tag Archives: puppy training

I Got it Right

2 Apr

Yesterday I was complaining about not being able to balance my morning responsibilities with a new puppy, but today I got it right.

But let’s back up for a second. After work yesterday, Zach and I had to go to the Sprint store to finally get me off of the family plan with my family and on to our own family plan. It’s about time! It seems like every time I step foot into the cell phone store, I’m there for at least 45 minutes and yesterday was no exception, so by the time we got home it was already after 6. I really wanted to get a run in, and I knew we had to have dinner soon, so I dashed off to the gym. Because I didn’t have a ton of time, and I knew I wanted to get those miles in, I decided to run as fast as I could:

fastest yet

…and I ended up running the fastest 5k I’ve done since my injury in November! I was pretty proud of myself.

So, still on a bit of a running high this morning, I was planning on getting up early and hitting the gym again. However, the puppy was not having it. When I got up to put on my running clothes, he was whining away and I felt bad leaving him with a still sleeping Zach, so instead we got up, played and ate breakfast.

Then we napped:

nap time

Well, they napped. I drank coffee and watched the news. I had to capture the above photo, because it’s pretty huge that those two were napping so near each other.  Tuscany is not a fan of the new puppy.

After the morning nap, it was play time again, so I dumped him into bed with Zach with some toys while I showered, and then after I got dressed I took him outside and then alternated playing with him in the living room and cooking breakfast. It was actually pretty funny, and I think I got a morning workout in anyway, as I was dashing from the stove to the living room to play tug-of-war with Frank.

I’m pretty proud of my desk breakfast today:


…a scrambled egg quesadilla! I basically just scrambled two eggs, and then filled a low-carb tortilla with the eggs and some cheddar cheese and grilled the whole thing. The cheese allowed the egg and tortilla to stick together, so I had a totally portable and dippable (into salsa) breakfast! Yum!

In short, having a puppy is hard work. I’m sure once he’s a little older and more independent, I’ll be able to get back into morning workouts, but for now I think I’m just going to have to skip them. It’s just not fair for me to ask Zach to get up at 5:30 when that’s just not his thing. He’s happy to watch the pup in the evenings while I hit the gym, so for now that’ll have to do! This is good practice for when (if) I’m a mom!


In other news!


I attended a benefit on Saturday that I just had to talk a bit about. There is a group of ladies trying to bring Girls on the Run to the Cabell County/Wayne County area. In case you don’t know, Girls on the Run is a program for school aged girls (3rd – 5th grade) to learn self-confidence, teamwork and to believe in themselves. From the GotR website:

One girl put it this way, “I learned that I am the boss of my brain.” Helping girls take charge of their lives and define the future on their terms. You can also think of it as Can University—a place where girls learn that they can. No limits. No constraints. Only opportunities to be remarkable.

How do we do it? 

Lots of ways, but we start with helping the girls get a better understanding of who they are and what’s important to them. Then we look at the role of teams and healthy relationships. And, finally, we explore how girls can positively connect with and shape the world.

And remember, we believe that life-changing experiences can be fun too—for everyone—the girls, coaches, families and other volunteers. So don’t be surprised when you hear laughter along with self-reflection and see beaming smiles across the beautiful, confident faces of our girls.

I’m super excited about this! As the coordinator said, this program is less about running and more about learning self-confidence and awareness, and basically that girls can do anything! The girls work as a team to train for and complete a 5k race. Again, from the website:

Meeting twice a week in small teams of 8-15 girls, we teach life skills through dynamic, conversation-based lessons and running games. The 24-lesson curriculum is taught by certified Girls on the Run® coaches and includes three parts: understanding ourselves, valuing relationships and teamwork and understanding how we connect with and shape the world at large.

I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to coach a team once it is a reality, but first we need to get the chapter up and running. It’s a very time consuming and costly process, so the steering committee is organizing quite a few fundraisers in order to get the program off the ground. On Saturday, I was lucky enough to attend a fundraiser at Brown Dog Yoga, which is located in Heritage Station in Huntington.


Despite the fact that my next-door neighbor is an instructor there, this was my first visit to Brown Dog Yoga. The studio is beautiful! The waiting room is bright and cheery, with lots of hooks for your things and cubby holes for your shoes, and the studio itself is so welcoming with its wood floors and amazing exposed brick wall. The cost was $30 per person for an hour long session with the chance to win some pretty cool door prizes that were donated by local businesses.

I haven’t done any yoga at all for a while (bad Kristy!), so I was looking forward to a good stretch after a rough Crossfit session that morning. I wasn’t quite prepared for what I got! The instructor, Katrina, started the class by powering up the heaters on the ceiling and it instantly got quite warm in the studio. Then Katrina led us through a rigorous vinyasa flow that challenged me quite a bit. I even had to take a few rests in child pose because I was so sweaty and breathing hard. It was a great workout! I didn’t end up winning any door prizes, but there was a little bit of food for us afterwards (including the best orange I’ve ever eaten — seriously!), and I left with the satisfaction of a good yoga session and knowing I’d supported a great cause.

If you are a Huntington local, I strongly suggest you visit Brown Dog Yoga! I was quite impressed.

Question of the Day:
Tell me about your morning routine

Life with Frank

29 Mar

I’m a girl who likes to have a plan, and a schedule.

Turns out, when you adopt a puppy, all of that goes out the window.


Frank and I had a little photo session this morning. As you can see, he got the memo about how to look at the camera, while I’m just staring off into space!

This week has been rough, to say the least. We “adopted” (I guess acquired is a better word for it, haha) Frank on Thursday of last week, and Zach and I both took Friday off work. So, we had several days with the pup where we didn’t have to leave him unattended for long. However, by Sunday I was freaking out about leaving him in the crate all by himself while we were at work. Luckily, Zach and I both come home for lunch every day, so we’re able to take him outside, feed him and play with him before he has to go back to the crate, but he’s so little that any time away from us is detrimental. Seriously, even if I put him on the bathroom floor while I shower, he cries when I have the shower curtain closed because he can’t see me. On one hand, it’s awesome that he loves us so much. On the other, I wish he’d be a little more independent. I hope it will come with time, but I sure am glad it’s Friday! Zach is off today, so Frank is home with him, and after this we have two interrupted days with him before it’s back to the crate.



But he is such a good puppy! We’ve had a lot of puppy training advice and we’ve been trying to follow it all carefully. He barely has any accidents in the house, but I mostly attribute that to the fact that he has a very regular feeding schedule and we are good about taking him out every couple of hours. As much as he seems to hate his crate, he has never once used the bathroom in it, so he’s got the idea that he’s not supposed to pee where he sleeps. He definitely knows the word, “No!” and he will stop what he’s doing when he hears it. Also, the awesome thing about his need to have me in his sight at all times is I can get up to clean the kitchen or whatever I need to do, and he’ll play nearby where I can see him. We’ve only had a couple puppy-chewing incidents, but one was my very favorite sports bra, so that was kind of a bummer. My fault though! I left it on top of the towel draped over his crate (we dry his paws with it), and he pulled the towel down during the day and managed to pull the bra into the crate.

It’s been hard to get workouts in with Frank. Since I’m not sleeping through the night anymore (the worst), I don’t get up the in mornings for workouts, and in the evenings Zach has had some work meetings. Luckily, Courtney offered to puppy sit one evening so I was able to get a run in, and I did make it to Crossfit one morning. This weekend is supposed to nice and I have signed up for a few Crossfit classes as well.

All in all, having a puppy is pretty hard work. Now, I don’t want to offend any moms out there, I’m not claiming that having a puppy is like having a baby, but it definitely gives me an idea of what it might be like to have a baby — getting up multiple times in the night, coordinating schedules so somebody is home with the baby, operating on little to no sleep, constantly keeping  an eye on him — it’s hard work!

But, I love his adorable little face so much, and hopefully I’ll get a great running partner out of it at the end of this growing up phase!



Question of the Day:
Have you ever taken care of a small puppy? Do you think it’s hard work, too, or am I being a wuss? 



13.2 and Puppy Training

26 Mar

I’ll admit, I’ve been intrigued by Crossfit for a while, but I wrote it off as too expensive. And, please, don’t give me the usual arguments about why it’s worth it — now that I’ve been doing some Crossfit workouts, I know why it’s worth it, but regardless of how worth it it may be, I cannot afford to shell out $150/month for anything.

At any rate, when the YMCA started offering Crossfit inspired classes, I couldn’t wait to join up.


I jumped in for the first week of classes and I was instantly hooked. Now, again, this isn’t traditional Crossfit in that we are somewhat limited to what we can do. We only have a limited amount of equipment (which is why the classes can only have 10 people/class), and one coach per class. But, we’re doing the same workouts as every other box is, and we’re learning the lifts together. My friend Sarah went a few times and decided to join the traditional Crossfit box in our area, and that’s great for her. If I could afford it, you know I’d be there too, but for now this is fine, and it’s included in my gym membership, which is a third of the cost of a monthly membership at the local Crossfit box.

So, recently, when the Crossfit Open began, I was interested in watching the WOD’s. When I watched Crossfit Games Open 13.2, I knew I had to suggest that we do it in class, because we had learned all the skills needed to do it:

10 minutes AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

5 shoulders to overhead (we did push press, since that is a skill we’ve been working on)
10 deadlifts 
15 box jumps

My coach, Noah, mentioned that we’d be doing it soon, but I wasn’t sure when. Well, this morning was my lucky day! After not getting a ton of sleep (little Frank woke me up every few hours to go outside — what a good puppy), I was not looking forward to class this morning! However, once Noah said we were doing 13.2, I got really excited. I couldn’t wait to see how I fared.

Now, if I worked out at a traditional box, I’d probably have my own box to use for box jumps and my own bar to use for the lifts, but we have to share, so that slowed me down a bit. Sometimes you have to take unplanned breaks to wait for a bar or a box to open up, but I was happy to just try it out. I did the prescribed weight (75 lbs) and tried to stick to the 20′ box for the jumps. I ended up doing 142 reps. As a comparison, Annie Thorisdottir (the current Fittest Woman on Earth as dubbed by the Reebok Crossfit Games) did 361. I’m happy with that performance. I’d like to do it again soon to see how much better I can get!


Puppy training update!

cold puppy

Like mother like son, Frank is not a fan of this cold weather. However, he’s been pretty good about only going outside to use the potty. He doesn’t “tell us” when he wants to go, we are just watching for signs right now, but he does seem to be holding it when he’s in his kennel. When I take him outside to go, he immediately does this pitiful little whine and snuggles up to my neck. Too cute. Luckily for Frank (and me!) the weather is supposed to warm up later this week.


I love to watch him play. A little puppy bounding from one place to the next  may be one of the cutest things ever. Right now, we’re working on the following training issues:

  • Potty training, obviously
  • Crate training. He’s not a fan of the crate just yet, but we’re working on making it a place he looks forward to being in. I got him a Kong toy and each night I fill it with peanut butter and freeze it for him to work on during the day. He doesn’t get the Kong unless he is in the kennel, so it’s a special treat. However, I think the Kong may lose it’s appeal after our lunchtime potty/lunch break so this morning I picked him up a bone stuffed with chicken for an afternoon treat. Hopefully by alternating these two special treats, he won’t get so lonely in his crate during the day. Some other things we do to make it appealing is feed him his morning and evening meals in there, and give him treats in there. So far, Frank is motivated by food (again, just like his mother).
  • Bite inhibition. He’s a puppy, and he loves to chew, which sometimes includes our hands, feet, clothing and other things he shouldn’t be chewing on. So, in order to fix that behavior issue, we redirect his biting to a toy he’s allowed to chew. If he does it again, we again redirect him. After a third time, however, we pin him down on his side and hold him there until he doesn’t struggle. This doesn’t hurt him, but it’s something that is meant to mimic how dogs in packs ‘teach’ each other. We are teaching Frank that we are the pack leaders and he has to listen to us. He is really good about listening to the word “No!” so far, as well. If he hears us say it, he stops what he’s doing so I think that’s a good sign.

What we need to work on:

  • Leash training. Frank doesn’t “get” the leash. He will follow me all day long like a little shadow, but the second I put him in a harness or collar and a leash, he freezes and will. not. move. I’m picking my battles for now, and as of now he’s so little that we’re able to keep close watch on him when he’s outside anyway. 
  • Sit/Stay/Come. Right now, I’m so focused on everything else this overwhelms me. But I think we have some time.

My friend Jessica said to me, “I promise, there will be a time when you regret getting a dog.” I hate to say it, but that is totally true. I love Frank with my whole heart and he’s a sweetheart, but I’m pretty much feeling guilty 100% of the time right now. I don’t like having to leave him all day while we’re at work, I worry that he’s barking and disturbing the neighbors, I worry that he gets lonely/sad/bored. I also worry that I’m not giving my cats as much attention as I should, so sometimes I wonder if us taking Frank in was the best thing to do. But, he’s ours now so I’m just going to try to make him the best dog I can!

Question of the Day:
Tell me about your pets!

If you do Crossfit, have you tried any of the Open workouts? How did you do? 



We’re Expanding Our Family

25 Mar

I’m not doing well with my goal of blogging 5 times a week. Working 9-5, planning a wedding, keeping up with a consistent schedule of working out — it’s hard to fit everything in, you know?

I’ve been very, very busy at work these past few weeks, and I’m currently hurriedly typing this up so I can get back to work today. I took Friday off because on Thursday night I was at a work event until almost 9 pm, and when I got home, I was informed that my future SIL, Courtney, had found a puppy abandoned in the stairwell at the building where she works:

frank 1


Uhh, look at that face!! Since Courtney already has 3 wild and crazy dogs running around her house, she wasn’t in the position to keep a puppy, so guess who he lives with now?

Photo courtesy of Courtney's Instagram!

Photo courtesy of Courtney’s Instagram!

Yep, Zach and I are now the proud owners of an 8-10 week old…well, we have no idea what he is but we do know that he is cute! After getting home from work at 9:00 PM, realizing that I now had a puppy (did you know puppies cry all night?) and getting zero sleep, I decided that a day off was in order on Friday. We’ve named our new addition Franklin Roosevelt Browning (Frank for short) and he is pretty awesome:

frank 2 frank 3 Frank 4 frank 5Puppy spam!

So right now I’m in the middle of crate training/house training a baby puppy and it’s pretty stressful. It’s going fairly well, but when we leave him alone he tends to whine and bark. There are four apartments in our building, and our downstairs neighbor commented on it yesterday when we left him alone for a bit to go see a movie and get lunch. Needless to say, I’m a little stressed out leaving him alone today for work. We’re going home for lunch to let him out (puppies can’t stay in their crate for 8 hours unattended), so hopefully he’s enjoying his frozen peanut butter stuffed Kong I left for him rather than barking. He’s in a dark room with a covered crate and music is playing, so all my bases are covered. I’m still stressed.

In fitness related news, I’ve been running my little heart out:



See those 1’s on there? Well, we did another mile for time at Saturday’s Crossfit class and remember when I told you about my 7:50 mile last week? Well, this time I did it in 7:36!! I love seeing improvement, don’t you?

My goal for this week’s fitness (after a puppy training rest day today) is to get a little strength training in when I’m not at Crossfit. On Saturday my coach chided me for not keeping up my strength training outside of class, so I need to get back to it.

Question of the Day:
Do you have a dog? If so, give me any puppy training tips!