Our first K9 Camp challenge was on this past week. Walking on Sunshine – aimed at getting us out there and walking more with our dogs. This one was going to take a bit of thought. After all, we walk the dogs so often, and usually for a decent distance, there would be nothing different about the challenge if that was all we did. Our Walking on Sunshine had to be a bit special.
Then I had an idea. Mountain View Road!!! This road is about 20 minutes drive from home, and is part bitumen, part gravel but all difficult. It’s not a long climb but it’s really steep; it really gets the heart pumping and the leg muscles working hard. Whenever we want a hard workout, we go up Mountain View Road. We hadn’t been there for a while, and it was the perfect venue for our first challenge.
I grabbed my children, grabbed Guinness the Kelpie, and off we went.
This picture doesn’t do the hill justice. Gravel underfoot, slippery in places, and with a really steep incline that goes on and on and on. It’s a tough climb. Guinness was a great help, he loves to stride uphill and he drags me along with him. We often meet a pair of little Jack Russell Terriers at the half way mark, and one or both of them join us on our walk. They are fit, sturdy little dogs.
The pic on the right gives a better indicator of the type of climb we have to contend with. Just behind the girls it looks like a very steep drop-off – that’s because it is! They look pretty pleased with themselves at getting to the top of that section, and rightly so.
When we get to the flat bush trail at the top of Mountain View Rd, it’s easy to see how it got its name. You can see all the way to the coast, and north to the Glasshouse Mountains. Just stunning! It’s well worth the hard climb just for the view.
The downward trip is as challenging as the walk up. Very hard on the quads, and while it’s nice having Guinness to help on the way up,his enthusiasm is quite scary on the way down! Fortunately, he’s learned to sense when I’m taking precarious steps down the steepest part of the road, and he stays close by my side.
I’d forgotten how much fun, and how challenging, the walk up Mountain View Rd is. We are going to try and get there fortnightly, and see if we can improve our uphill strength. Totally bummed that I didn’t think of giving the kidlets my phone so they could take a pic of Guinness and I. After all, this is all about him! Next time.
So, if you’re looking to improve your fitness, don’t just opt for the flat places to walk. Look for somewhere hilly that’s a bit more of a challenge, and walk it harder. Your dog’s fitness (and yours) will increase faster with the tougher workout.
It’s not too late to join K9 Camp fitness challenges. Why not get started with your own Walking on Sunshine challenge, and let us know how you get on.