Neely Spence Gracey Let's Her Dog do the Talking

We checked in recently with our favorite local celebrity, Neely Spence Gracey. You know the one, she's the elite distance runner you saw last Spring with her dog Strider on the cover of Runner's World Magazine. We wanted to know how their training was going and because she is busy, Neely let Strider send us an update. It's an interesting read, not just because it is written by a Vizsla but also because we can see that Neely takes all forms of training very seriously.


Here's what she had to say ...

Hi, My name is Strider Gracey, I am a 1.5-year-old Vizsla from Boulder, CO. Last spring, I was on the cover of Runner’s World with my mom. We are professional athletes (but she hasn’t let me race with her yet because I think she knows I would win!).

When I was little, I only got to do her 1 mile warm up a few days a week, but now I get to run longer! We trained for the NYC marathon this fall, and I did 3-4 miles with her at a time. I don’t know how she races so fast when all our runs are so slow. Sometimes I get bored and try to chase leaves, or say hi to other runners, or push the pace a little. Even though I run much faster and for much longer at the dog park, I love running with my mom.

Every time she gets my running leash out, I know what’s coming and I get so excited!  The Iron Doggy™ leash is what I was trained with from the time I was very little. I learned that when it is on, it means we focus on the task and it’s not a time to stop and smell all the bunny trails. Mom clicks it around her waist, and we are off! I always stay on the left side and can never put tension in the leash. If I start to get too antsy and push the pace, mom pulls the leash until I am back by her side. I used to get too excited, but now I follow the rules most of the time. I also learned what left and right means so that when we run, mom doesn’t trip over me when we turn! I go left when she says so, and then she acts happy and I feel good knowing I did it right.

I don’t like to be left at home, and now that it’s cooler, I get to go running more often. Extra cookies after the run, a big drink of water, and then I curl up in my new bed while mom works. When dad gets home, we go to the dog park and I get to have a real workout! My favorite game is “catch me if you can." I always win.

Until next time,

-Strider Gracey

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