One way that I distract myself from the fact that I’m actually running is counting how many animals I see. I think it’s something I’ve always done on my neighborhood runs, but I’ve been really keeping track this year. If you follow me over on Instagram, I’ve been posting my run recaps in my stories and include a count of animals.
Here’s what I count:
Dogs: Obviously I see the most of these. I count them if I see them out on a walk with their human, if they’re in a front yard or back yard, or if I can see them in a house through the window. My all-time count for dogs on a run is 22.
Cats: Cats seem to be the rarest of the four typical animals I count. I’ll normally see them either outside in a front yard or back yard or in a window in the house. My all-time count for cats on a run is 4.
Bunnies: We have tons of those wild brown bunnies in my neighborhood, and I think they’re so cute. Since I’ve been running a lot more in the morning, I see a lot more bunnies. My all-time count for bunnies on a run is 7.
Chipmunks: Similar to bunnies, I see more of these in the morning. They’re kind of hard to find, though, since they run so fast. My all-time count for chipmunks on a run is 3.
(I also seen a ton of squirrels but those would be impossible to count. So I don’t bother with them. It’s easier to keep track of dogs, cats, bunnies, and chipmunks.)
Other animals I’ve seen on runs:
Raccoons: Yeah. That was kind of creepy. It was on an early morning run during the week, and at first I saw them from a distance and thought they were really big squirrels. As I got closer, I realized they were two baby raccoons, and they gave me the stink eye as they climbed a tree in someone’s front yard. It was like 7:30 a.m., and I know raccoons are nocturnal, so maybe they were out with mom looking for food? Wherever mom was? I don’t know, but I haven’t seen them or any other raccoons since.
Deer: This was unexpected. I was running through a neighborhood—not mine but one that I run regularly—and I could see this family of deer on someone’s front yard. It was a mom and three babies. I slowed down because 1. I didn’t know if the mom was going to attack me for passing, and 2. I wanted to take pictures, which I did.
The area where I was sort of has woods but not tons, so I’m not really sure where they came from. They eventually safely crossed the road—to the right in the photo—and ran into someone’s back yard.
I don’t think I had seen deer that up close before. It was pretty cool.
What do you see on your walks or runs?