Saturday, February 20, 2016

Not Defying Gravity… (because it’s gravity, it always wins)

You know what you look like when you limp slowly through a mall in exercise gear?  An inappropriately dressed dick.

That’s lesson number one from the school of ‘Get Just Fit Enough to Injure Yourself Properly’.  Catchy title, I know.  I’m getting t-shirts made.

If it no longer looks or acts like an ankle... does word 'ankle' really still apply?

Lesson number two is to remove all songs from your jogging playlist that talk about gravity winning in the end, or reference falling.  Because nobody likes an ironic soundtrack while they whimper and limp.  Next thing you know, you start muttering at your iPod shuffle: “Why would you play that?” and “Seriously, do you hate me?”… which when combined with the limping and deeply unflattering clothing just makes people give you side eye.

This is my tradition – first decide to get in shape, next force self to go to the gym despite finding it agonizingly boring (and also agonizing because, you know… effort), thirdly start to make headway and gain some level of fitness, then fourthly, injure self.  That’s what we in the business of weak ankles call a full stop.

The last thought to pass through my head before I went down like a sack of shit mid-run was:

‘Hey, I’m actually finally fit enough to enjoy this… I bet I don’t even look like I’m having an asthma attack while I do it now.’

That sentiment was basically the harbinger of my inevitable doom.  I should never, ever, under any circumstance, no matter the temptation allow myself to think that.  Not even after a year of being injury free, not even as a passing notion – Irony is a patient bitch, and she’s always watching.  Always.

Fitness has long been a safer bet for me when it’s happened by accident – like the time I hiked the Machu Picchu trail and the lack of oxygen just sucked the fat right out of me, or that year I spent sprinting after wayward special needs kids as a part time job.  Now those are reliable ways to get in good condition.  Some of those kids can really run.

But actually trying to become a person in possession of The Fitness really does seem like playing Russian roulette, except instead of a gun you’re pulling the trigger on gravity.  And it’s loaded with your own body weight, bad eyesight, and uneven pavement. And instead of death, the consequences could be a really long walk home, with added sobbing if you’re already feeling emotionally fragile.

Really ran with that analogy, didn’t I?  Ran with it, then sort of fell over and limped away from it at the end.  Because I’m consistent.

No stunt ankles were used in the making of this post.

In summation, consider this a public safety announcement: for the sake of your health, never exercise on purpose.  Down that path lies pain, irritation at self, and the stunning realisation that the Haim song ‘Falling’ is really a taunting missive from them to you.

Painefull Out


  1. Amen! This would have helped me greatly last Saturday to warn me before I went running with my sister (who always has and always will be fitter than I am) and sprained my damn ankle too. Honestly, one is way more likely to injure oneself exercising than not yet they say one should exercise for one's health.

    I hope you recover fast, you poor bugger!

  2. That looks terribly painefull :(