Certain days of the week are etched in stone. Mondays, Wednesdays...these are days I can't screw around with staying up after 9:30. Thursday through Sunday, and Tuesday are a little more flexible, but you're more likely to see me hitting the rack no later than 10. Gone are the days of staying up until all hours of the night and waking bright-eyed and bushy-tailed eight hours later. While I'm religious on my seven-to-nine hours a night, I'm truly affected by anything that affects my pattern. My wife, God bless her, calls it discipline. I tend to think it's closer to obsessive-compulsive behavior.
I've joked about this once before, but I believe that everything you ever need to know about being an athlete you can learn from your dog...especially if they're a greyhound. My 'hound, Rubin, is up (like a jack-in-the-box, I might add) at the stroke of five every morning. He's excited at the beginning of a new day...another bowl of kibble...another romp in the yard...another walk around the park...another day of napping on the cool tile of my wife's office.
Dogs are masters at the art of energy conservation. Why run when you can walk? Why walk when you can stand and sniff butts? Why stand when you can sit and scratch yourself? Why sit when you can lay down? I never hear Rubin complain about going for a jog around the park, or that he's tired and sore when he gets up in the morning. He tolerates the same kibble, twice a day, with a daily Milk-Bone supplement when he can "talk" his "mom" and "dad" out of one.
There have been Friday or Saturday evenings where my wife have been sitting on the couch, drinking beer and watching Monty Python...Rubin will get up from his blanket on the floor in front of the couch and stand between us and the television. I'll get a little perturbed at first, then realize what the time says on the clock. "It's 9 or 9:30," he 'says' with his big brown 'hound eyes. "You have to train in the morning." Sometimes he'll walk off to the bedroom and his large sleeping pillow, other times (if we ignore him) he'll stand directly in front of us until we get up to go to bed.
There's nothing like the sigh of the 'hound as he settles into his pillow..."mission accomplished. Dad'll thank me when he PR's."