By: Magi Scallion
I am really terrible at hiking. As a foot-sport lover, this may seem senseless for me, but it is true. I think it’s because I love running so much that I will always choose to run over walking or hiking, especially when I’m in a hurry. As such, I enjoy strolling but I rarely walk or hike for exercise.
This came to a screeching halt this weekend and I ventured my first hike in support of my 34-week preggo friend, Sabrina. We’re long-time running partners, dating back to epic battles between our University teams more than 10 years ago, but now she’s in a state of non-running so I thought I should try to join one of her outings for “a change.”
The first concern was, “What do I wear?” I have hiking boots, but the rest of my exercise attire is focused around running (lots of spandex), cross country skiing (lots of spandex) and ski touring/alpine (lots of warm stuff). I had to dig to the depths of my closet to find some pants that would be suitable for hiking and not too tight.
It was a pretty chilly day (snowing, as you can see in the picture) so pants were a necessity. I even considered long underwear!
Overall the hike was pretty fun. It was just great to get out in nature with a good friend. We may not have been moving so fast as normal but we did get in 500 m of elevation gain to a beautiful little spot called Paget Lookout, just west of Lake Louise. The trail was really great going and there are some other options in the area if you wanted to extend your day. Although this may seem wrong (considering I was there to HIKE) I couldn’t help but think that the trails would make for a nice little RUN on a summer day: about 6-10 km of trail with two destinations.
Most importantly, it was important to try something new and help a friend through a period of forced slow pace movement. Being outside, with friends, in nature (breathing in the snow air) is a great way to spend a day, no matter how fast or slow you’re going!
Born in Nova Scotia and emigrating to British Columbia via Ontario and Alberta, Magi has been running the entire way. Primarily defined as a cross country ski racer, Magi has competed nationally and internationally in that sport. The highlight of her career was competing in the World University Games and the World Cup races in Canada in 2007. Cross country skiers rely heavily on running for cross training and Magi has become an accomplished trail and mountain runner, representing Canada at the World Mountain Running Championships in 2005 and the winning numerous national championships medals.
Today Magi runs for fun… and it’s a lot of fun! Epic mountain runs, city cruises with friends, and more keep her happy and occupied outside of work and school.