12 March, 2013

How to walk and swim the Trail in -30C weather

The poster used by the City of Fort St John to help participants track their progress during the fitness challenge.

Every year, Paola Banks conjures up a challenge to keep the citizens of the City of Fort St John, B.C., moving — especially when it gets to be -30C outside. This year, the recreation programmer chose a theme we can get behind: the Trans Canada Trail.

Over the course of four months, participants are encouraged to “Walk and Swim the Trans Canada Trail” by walking laps on the Pomeroy Sport Centre’s Northern Vac Track or swimming laps at the North Peace Leisure Pool.

“It’s been very well received and enjoyed,” Banks says. “I got a lot of positive response from this. We had 93 participants register in the first week.”

In order to make the challenge manageable and to make sure participants wouldn’t get discouraged, Banks had to do some math. Starting with the projected length of the Trans Canada Trail once fully connected (23,000 km), Paola proportionally reduced it. Following her premise, one lap on the track, which is actually 340 m, is equivalent to walking 15 km on the Trail. Similarly, one lap in the pool, which is actually 25 m, is equivalent to swimming 3.4 km on the Trail.

As such, participants will have until April 15 (the challenge began on January 15) to complete either 1,220 laps around the track or 1,320 laps in the pool — an ambitious, healthy goal.

Banks printed large maps of the Trail, which are featured in both locations so participants can gauge their progress and get a sense of crossing our large nation.

For more information on the “Walk and Swim the Trans Canada Trail” challenge, follow this link and scroll to the bottom of the page.

No matter where you are or what the weather’s like, there’s always a way to enjoy the Trans Canada Trail.