A Spooky Halloween Story…
A year ago I was invited by my new trainer Kevin to join him on a trail run. Almost all of my runs, with the exception of the odd adventure race have been on roads, seawalls, or some sort of hard, level surface. I rarely run on trails. Kevin hounded me a little on this one, said it would be a lot of fun and it was a Halloween run. Apparently you had to wear a costume for the run. In the end I said okay. I had a roman centurion costume that I had cobbled together for a Halloween party the year before so I figured I could resurrect that. It had a plastic chest plate on top of the tunic and flowing red cape. I picked up a gold laurel wreath at the costume store as I couldn’t imagine running in the big helmet.
This run turned out to be another lesson in how fit people are different from the rest of us. When a fit person says it is a costume run, they mean they have some cute socks with pictures of pumpkins on them, or they are going to wear a skirt over their shorts that has a shredded hem so they look witch-like. Of course some might actually cut loose and wear a colorful toque or shirt. They all know that you don’t run 9k up the Seymour watershed in an actual Halloween costume. Alas, this was news to me. Apparently it was news to Kevin as well who was new to this whole being fit thing. He was going to go as Harry Potter. If you knew Kevin you would know just how funny that was.
I showed up at the run location and the lesson was learned quickly and brutally. I hate being the center of attention, at least I hate it when I don’t have a drink in my hand. It was about 8 in the morning, I wasn’t happy to be up in the first place and now I was standing amongst hundreds of others with nary a costume wearer in site. Everyone was pointing and laughing and snickering under their breath and I was just fuming!!
After a little while I have to admit, even I was laughing at the absurdity of it. Then Kevin showed up and we both ended up laughing at ourselves and each other.
I don’t know why I don’t do more trail running because I love it. There is nothing like running through a forest. There is so much to see and you need to pay so much attention to where your feet are at all times. It is quite exciting. As well, there are always spots where you need to walk, either because the footing is too slippery or the climb too vertical to gain anything from running. During a run like this, there are also spots that are so choked with people that you have to walk there too. I find it much more exciting pushing myself harder for shorter periods followed by forced walks.
In any case, I learned something else that day. Running through the forest in a tunic with a red cape flowing behind you is actually a blast! I highly recommend it. If it weren’t for the fact that real Romans wore metal armor and the fact that if they were running through a forest it was probably because a Gaul or a Barbarian was chasing after them to kill them, if it wasn’t for these things, it would have been a blast to have been a Roman.
Don’t know why I thought of last years run today, except that it was a year ago and Halloween is right around the corner. So, Happy Halloween to everyone out there. I hope you get to enjoy this time of year and have a lot of fun wearing your costume wherever you choose to go (just remember fit people speak a different language so ask lots of question).
On a side note, careful where you wear your costume. This picture ended up on the wall of the gym for a month. On the plus side, I did receive numerous invitations to parties (with the caveat, ‘Oh, and it is a costume party’…). As well, Kevin lost his Harry Potter glasses on the trail so if anyone sees them, they can drop me a line and we can get them back to him