Okay, so you want to start running but refuse to use a treadmill because you believe breathing in the fresh air is half the point of going for a run.
But you're also nervous about running alone (your neighborhood is not the greatest).
Ever consider getting a dog? You'll both benefit from the exercise and companionship. A dog has to go out at least 3 times a day to relieve themselves - it'll be great motivation to get your butt off the couch, and get you both outside. Plus there is a new study that shows that dog owners are healthier than folks without pets.
You want to choose a dog that prefers an active lifestyle. And you should be committed to taking care of your dog for the rest of your life. This means giving your pet all the love, healthy food, and exercise it needs, because if you don't, your pet might get bored and look for other ways to keep busy and be "athletic" (aka - destroy your home).
Very important: Before getting a dog, you need to love running or jogging, and being outdoors first. Know that your dog will need to be trained to run, jog, or play with you. They'll also need to be at least 2 years old, because puppies shouldn't run long distances.
Want to know some great high-energy breeds to choose from? Then
- Golden Retriever
- Labrador Retriever
- Rhodesian Ridgeback
- Irish Setter
- German Shorthair
- English Setter
- German Shepherd
- Australian Cattle Dog
- Shetland Sheepdog
All dogs require a lot of love, attention, and time to play around. But these breeds will love all the running around they can get.
Most small dogs, like Chihuahuas, are not built for distance running. And larger dogs, like Great Danes, are strong enough to drag you off balance.
Of course, all dogs have their own unique personality. Just because they are high-energy dogs, doesn't mean they'll love sticking to your strict exercise plan.
But owning a dog could be a great way to keep both of you healthy. Check out this book, it may give you some good tips on exercising with your pooch.
Fit's Tips: Start your running regimen slowly. Run half a mile every other day and build up gradually. Make sure you bring water along as dogs don't sweat like we do. And check your dog's paws for cuts before and after a run (they don't have the luxury of getting the newest Nikes).