Every now and then I have a moment where I’m on. You know those moments. We all have them. We’re in a situation where we need to know something quickly, and for whatever reason – sufficient sleep, hard work, solid nutrition, hydration, planets aligning with stars, ascending moons, green clovers, blue diamonds, purple horseshoes, whatever – we’re able to provide any and all answers like it’s second nature, even when were required to think on our feet, synthesizing and integrating ideas and concepts on the fly. It’s as if our entire existence was to provide that very moment with the necessary clarity that only we could offer.
This post is not about one of those moments.
Picture me walking home from the office this evening. It’s already dark and I’m cold the minute I step outside. Picture me checking email as I go. Picture me responding to emails, because I’m nothing if not efficient with my time. Picture me waiting patiently for the light to change to indicate that it is safe for me to cross the street. Picture me crossing the street, taking a moment to say hello to a graduate student who just so happens to be walking in the opposite direction. Realize that I am at least somewhat aware of my surroundings. Realize also that my night vision sucks, especially after being slightly longer than momentarily blinded by the cars waiting for me to cross the street.
Can you picture that? Got that in your head? Good.
Now picture me walking into a fence. A bright orange fence. A bright orange fence that stands at least as tall as me. A bright orange fence that stands at least as tall as me and that I didn’t see.
Hmm, me thinks I might have bitten off a bit much. That, or if I manage to complete everything that I just wrote down in a very fancy-pants spreadsheet of walking-running-biking-yoga‘ing, then I’ll officially be certifiable. Or awesome. Maybe both.
What exactly did I just write down in this fancy-pants spreadsheet that I keep yammering on about?
Well, I decided that I should set up a bit of a training schedule for the coming year. The current schedule suggests that I will walk about 1392 km (which is less than the goal that I had set here). It also suggests that I’ll be running 1615.70 km (more than twice my original goal).
So many kilometres of running. Right now, the thought freaks me out a bit. But those are necessary given the fact that I’m thinking about taking part in most if not all of the following races:
And given that three of the races are marathons, lots of running is essential.
Another essential component: rest. So with that in mind you’d think that all of the walking and running and racing would be sufficient for this simple man. But you’d be wrong. Because I’m insane, clearly. My trusty little spreadsheet also suggests that I’m going to bike 2675 km – a full 675 km more than my original goal.
In total, we’re talking 5682.7 km. That’s a little more than 15.5 km per day. Let me repeat that – per day. Yikes.
But hold on folks, I’m not finished. I’ve also listed 25890 minutes of yoga in my spreadsheet. So, if I assume each kilometer of walking takes 12 minutes, each kilometer of running takes 5.5 minutes, and each kilometer of biking takes 3.2 minutes, we’re talking 60040.35 minutes of activity. Or in other words 1000.67 hours, or 41.69 full days of non-stop walking, running, biking, and yoga. I’m tired already.
But you know what, it won’t happen unless I try. And even if I don’t complete all of these things (I mean, I am only human and this does seem a bit extreme), I’m still going to have fun trying. And that’s really all that matters.
Of course, if you find me in the street in the fetal position, crying, exhausted, and demanding that someone let me sleep, please lead me to a bed. I’ll thank you whenever I manage to regain consciousness.
As part of my recovery, I have decided that I need to get out of my condo for at least an hour or so a day so that I can move about and make whatever attempt I can at exercise. Ideally, I’d be doing this out-of-doors, but for now have opted to do my exercise indoors.
And what exactly might I be doing for this hour? Only partaking in the most exciting sport ever invented – Mall-Walking! That’s right folks, every day I saunter (well, maybe not so much saunter as amble) over to the glorious Stone Road Mall to walk from one end to the other. And every day I see pretty much the same things; sales, more sales, and Christmas ornaments.
True story. Hallmark already has their Christmas ornaments up for sale. I died a little inside when I saw that. Truth be told, seeing the ornaments up made me a little angry. Why for the love of all things are we selling ornaments in August? Is it any wonder people are annoyed with Christmas by the time it does roll around in December (only 137 days from now)? I was so annoyed, I tweeted the following:
Amazingly, no response from Hallmark. Go figure. :)
Anyway, back to the point of my post. Walking. More specifically, the honoured and ancient sport of Mall-Walking. Fortunately, anybody – all ages, all sizes, all levels of health – can partake in Mall-Walking. But what, pray tell, does one do as a Mall-Walker? Easy. One walks the mall. Seriously.
Don’t get me wrong, I think the idea that the mall is open for those that want to get out to do any form of activity (because movement is good) is awesome. And I love when I’m walking to school in the winter when I can see the seniors strutting their stuff through the corridors of Stone Road Mall. It’s good for their physical well-being, their mental well-being, and there is clearly a huge social aspect to it as well. So there is nothing wrong with Mall-Walking.
However, it’s very much an exercise in hilarity for me. Not because I think the activity is hilarious (granted, there is something funny to be said about walking a mall), but because I feel hilarious when I’m doing it. Why? First, I’m ambling along as if I’m some sort of retiree. And while retirement does sound nice at times, I’m a long way from that stage of my life (both financially, and professionally). Second, I’m constantly being passed by people who are older, and in a lot of cases, less physically fit than me. This actually makes me giggle because try as I might, I just can’t catch up. Me, a runner, and biker, and hot-yoga-er. Crazy. Third, and last, I’m exhausted by the time I’ve finished one lap. Seriously exhausted.
For example, today, after having a very nice liquid lunch with my friend Victoria (note: liquid lunch does not mean booze, it means a Starbucks beverage – although I understand your confusion), I walked the mall. I walked from Chapters (for those of you familiar with the layout), down to Sears, through Sears, down to the Garage Clothing Company (or whatever the women’s clothing store happens to be now). I turned right, walked past Rogers and Bell, by the food court, stopped to say hello to the chocolate tasties at the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, then proceeded to wander down and through HomeSense. By the time I was on my way to HomeSense, I felt the need to sit down and rest. I didn’t, but I felt that way. Once in HomeSense, the urge to sit was too much. I actually plopped down onto the floor and pretended to check my email, because I found it insane that I needed to rest that badly and didn’t have it in me to explain to those walking by me why I was plopped in such a manner. Ridiculous. Hilarious.
After a few minutes, I managed to get up and make my way home. And then I had a one and a half hour nap. And this was all without any influence of oxycodone. Because I’m just that cool.
There you have it folks. Mall-Walking. The sport that exhausted me to the point of needing a nap after only 1 hour.
Of course I realize that this is a function of having surgery less than a week ago. And it’s also a function of not eating enough food due to my liquid and now semi-solid diet. And since I like numbers as they allow me to make sense of the world, I decided to figure out how much the diet might be playing into my Mall-Walking exhaustion by calculating my Caloric intake since Friday. On average, and this is a rough estimate, I’ve taken in only about 820 Calories per day. Um, ya. That might explain my exhaustion.
I think I’m going to go drink a tall glass of honey.