The fall.

How it happened, I'm not quite sure. It was so fast and yet played out in slow motion. It began with the instructor issuing the most ominous of instructions, "We'll be doing fast-paced circuits today, so leave your treadmills running when you hop off so the next person can get started quickly."

Seemed legit.

As we began the class, I felt fantastic. We finished the first set and I hopped off my slow-running treadmill. After doing rowing and lifting sets, I headed back to the treadmill. As I caught my reflection in the mirror, I noticed I was sweating bullets and gave myself a mental high-five. Pretty fucking good for a Wednesday morning, I thought.

Liz Marsh
Liz Marsh

That's when it happened. I finished running, lowered the speed on my treadmill and prepared to hop off the end. Out of nowhere, Fat Vladimir Putin stepped at the back of my treadmill. Instinct kicked in and, without thinking, I took a step back, but the belt beneath my feet propelled me forward. Fat Vlad and I collided, hard. Suddenly I was on the ground.

I couldn't stand. Vlad shrugged his shoulders and hopped on the treadmill to continue his workout. Everyone around me continued to workout as though nothing happened.

I began to feel the pain shoot up my leg and I started to cry. I finally caught the eye of a girl on a rowing machine.

"Can you help me?" I screamed over thumping music. "I need help, I can't stand. I need you to get me help."


By now I realized my survival depended on being extremely clear with these endorphin-obsessed assholes.

They left me on the floor for a solid 10 minutes, probably hoping I would just get up and walk it off. Finally, another classmate hopped off his treadmill and carried me to the office.

"If you can't get a hold of anyone else, I can take you to the hospital... after class," he said.

And literally adding insult to injury, the staff asked, "Can we call your boyfriend or husband?"

Then they dumped me out of the rolling office chair and I caught myself with my rapidly swelling foot, adding injury to injury. The A-Team, this was not.

I finally made it to the ER, and the rest is history. Or will be as soon as I am off these crutches.

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