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The Year of Chimmy

Hello! Ruffwear Ambassador Linsey Corbin (owner to Chimmy & wife to Chris) checking in here. 

When not palling around with my pup, I am a professional triathlete. I compete in Ironman triathlons all over the world from March to October every year. Most summers go by very quickly for me: train, eat, sleep, travel, race, travel, repeat. I love being a professional athlete, it’s a dream job - but along with the job title comes a lot of sacrifices. 

Chimmy lays on the ground with head next to basecamp bowls and mat.

2020 has been different than any other of the past 15 years. All of our races have been postponed to 2021 or cancelled, and our return to racing is unknown. For someone that thrives on routine, structured training, goal-setting, and has an identity rooted in being a professional athlete, this has come with its own set of challenges – both mentally & physically. 

Lucky for me, there’s Chimmy. Golden retrievers are just the best companions ever – particularly when your world has been turned upside down. Chimmy is always there, tail wagging, ready to head out the door on the next adventure. 

Linsey & Chimmy on a bike ride.

Rather than focusing on the negative aspects that I have been presented with this summer, I have chosen to focus on the positives. Summer 2020 has been a true gift. It is the first “free” summer I have had in nearly 15 years. If Chris and Chimmy want to go camping, it’s a heck yes from me! If we want to head out on the paddle boards to beat the heat, I am so there. If I want to relax with a good book in the hammock, Chimmy is right by my side for an afternoon snooze. With no races on the horizon, my training is much less structured these days, allowing me to do more trail running & hiking adventures than ever before.

Chimmy sits on the bow of the boat while Linsey fishes.

Chimmy has also provided great companionship on a mental level. I get why dogs serve as support animals. Chimmy doesn’t care if you win, lose or don’t start a race – she’s always there with a wagging tail and cute puppy smile. The greatest lesson I have learned from Chimmy is one of living in the present moment. I find that in times of uncertainty, when things feel like they are spiraling out of your control, the best thing you can do is focus on the moment right in front of you.

Chimmy launches into the river.

While 2020 is not at all how I scripted it, I know down the road I will look back at this summer and be filled with fond memories of sleeping under the stars, splashing in the river and spending more time than ever with my furry companion. And for that, I am grateful.

Linsey & Chimmy snuggle.