One day I hope to be a decent runner. I want to pass people while racing instead of memorizing what all the people look like from behind. In order to help me on my quest to be a better runner, I joined a hardcore running club. We meet Tuesdays and Thursdays right after work just south of downtown. Our very in shape coach is great, but she has us do workouts that involve running up and down large hills – such as Connor’s hill and Grierson hill – and then we work on our speed while running up and down them. After we finish an hour of running all over the river valley, we go back to the community league to do core exercises, such as 'the plank’! If anyone is curious, I hate the plank…
Since I live in the arctic, there is ice everywhere which results in very dangerous running conditions at times – especially up and down hills! Due to the icy conditions of yesterday, our coach planned a workout that involved over 1,000 stairs, after all, the stairs weren’t icy…I managed all the stairs, and felt the very bottom of my lungs for the first time ever in my life. There was also an odd wheezing noise that came out whenever I would reach the top of the Hotel MacDonald stairs.
I usually hate doing the core exercises, but after that work out I was happy to do any exercise that involved lying on the floor! As we were finishing up with the plank, I saw Jon poke his beaming face into the room. He came to pick me up with tickets to go see Stephen and Avi Lewis at the Shaw Conference Centre – which started in 15 minutes! I quickly changed back into my work clothes and off we went to the Shaw. I was exhausted after running up and down the Hotel MacDonald stairs 3 times and the Crowne plaza stairs 5 times, but it isn’t very often that you get to see Stephen and Avi Lewis and ask them any question you want! So off we went in a hurry.
The event started at 7:00 and we didn’t leave the Riverdale Community league until 6:55, so we were obviously quite late. Once we got into the Shaw we started quickly down the escalators. The second set of escalators is ridiculously long and on my decent I somehow tripped and went flying forward and ended up sliding head first, face down on the supremely long escalator – my laptop bag leading the way. Jon noticed that I was no longer standing beside him and grabbed my ankle so I stopping sliding towards certain death. All I could think about was my hair getting sucked down the side of the escalator and ending up at the bottom of the Shaw Conference Centre with the stairs hitting me in the face. At that moment, I recalled a frightening story my grandma had told me about a little boy getting his foot sucked down the side of an escalator while she watched in horror. I sure didn’t want my whole body sucked down the side of the escalator, so I rolled awkwardly toward the middle, still going down head first. I was so tired and frightened that I all I could do was meekly say, “Help, help, help…”
Jon came to my rescue, he jumped over my body that was strewn over most of the escalator and hefted me right side up. He saved me riding the rest of the way down head first and arriving at the bottom like a beached whale in front of important people wearing nice suits. I ripped holes in my best pair of pants and have huge scrapes from the stairs up the whole right side of my body. I look like a red and cream zebra. The worst part is my shins – who knew an escalator could cause so much bruising and such deep cuts?
Once I could breathe normally and realized that I was going to live, I was just glad that we were late. If we had been on time, who knows what tragic thing would have happened? Are you familiar with the domino theory? After all of this, we continued on to the event, ripped pants and all. I am sure I looked quite disheveled. I managed to run up and down 1,000 stairs without tripping, apparently that 1,001st stair is a doozey.