Antarctica Countdown 37 Days and Counting: Someone Please Steal This Idea

The Dreaded 100 Stairs on Signal Hill

The Dreaded 100 Stair Staircase on Signal Hill

I’ve had this idea before. And I am sure many others have as well (it’s hard to have a truly original idea I think)…but anyone, I hope someone will see this post, seize this idea, and run with it. You don’t even need to cite me 🙂

So there I was, pulling my tire up Signal Hill, littering the hill with sweat droplets because the sun decided to shine today for only the 32 minutes during which I was working very hard to take my tire for a walk up the hill. Then the re-eureka moment (as I said I’ve had the thought before)…”I wish pulling this tire up the hill was doing some good. Some real good.”

There it is…the birth of a new exercise movement…”Working Out for Good.” On so many occasions, I’ve lamented that much of all the working out we do in North America is good for ourselves but not good for others (it is good for others in some ways-the exercise keeps us healthy and keeps us out of the health care system, etc…). So as I was labouring hard up the hill, I wished my labour was doing some good like carrying serum to Nome to fight diphtheria (The Iditarod Races commemorate that historic overland trip), heaving huge bags of food relief across a refuge camp, sledge-hauling towards the South Pole like Amundsen and Scott, or building houses with Habitat for Humanity.

Yes, my labour was getting me ready for the rigours of Antarctica but I wondered if it could be doing more…

I dream of a clearing house for Working Out for Good…perhaps a website…where folks who need manual labour done could register and folks who need to do manual labour (i.e. most of us…we usually call it exercise or fitness or training) could be brought together to have our workouts work for good. When I was in boot camp last spring, we used to hit a big tire with a sledge hammer…imagine if I was driving posts for a community garden instead of just whacking the tire. Last week when I was doing sand bag get-ups and moved over 2000 pounds of sand in ten minutes-might it have been better if I moved than ton across a Habitat build site. Now, I admit the logistics would be tricky…and we all like to have our work-out/training routines…I get that…it helps me get them done too…but I’m sure there is some bright creative people out there who can solve these tricky little hitches and have me carrying someone’s groceries up seven flights of stairs instead of my backpack up the Signal Hill stairs.

So let’s harness all this good working out we’re doing for good…let’s start generating energy with all those treadmills, stationary bikes, and rowing ergs. Let’s move building supplies, fertilizer, and groceries instead of barbells. Let’s get working out for good. Some please steal this idea…I’ll be the first to sign up! And if you know of any such programs like this-please send the info my way. I’ll pass the info around.

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