Saturday, September 18, 2010

Spain fights obesity through innovative airport program

Madrid Airport. Copyright©2010 by Franco Esteve. All rights reserved.
Photo: Madrid Airport. Copyright©2010 Franco Esteve. All rights reserved.
Madrid, Spain - The Madrid airport has gone through a number of innovative changes in the last few years. A new train whisks passengers from terminal to terminal at a rate slower than crossing the whole of London, causing high levels of stress for passengers. The new terminal is huge and modern so you have a more pleasant environment when having to run from one side to the other. They've even added a new, fun game dynamic called: Guess your gate number.

This last is an exciting experience where they'll tell you a gate number for your flight, and the information may be accurate or it may not be. When you get to that gate, it's like a suspenseful lottery. Your flight may or may not board there. If it does, you've won and the game is over… or is it? How exhilarating.

This seems to me like an innovative program against obesity, and considering the fantastic competence of the Spanish government which has the country on the brink of bankruptcy, both economically and intellectually, one might think it was on purpose. If you want to lose weight, don't just travel to Madrid, but add the extra excitement of having to get a connecting flight at this airport. It will not only keep you on your toes, as they change the gate number, adding a high level of suspenseful stress to your traveling, but will keep you fit with all the running from one side to another.

I have unfortunately been forced to be in transit at this airport numerous times and can certainly attest that this program fights obesity, having lost a number of calories in the process of going through it. Let me share with you the wonders of going through this airport. For purposes of this example, I did not receive my connecting flight information, so we begin with arriving at a terminal without having any idea where to go.

1. Finding Iberia's information booth: 5 minutes, 30 calories.
2. Realizing you don't have much time and have to change terminals: 10 calories.
3. Running to the train: 15 minutes, 80 calories.
4. Realizing the train takes close to 30 minutes to get to where you need to go: 10 calories.
5. Running to passport control: 10 minutes, 50 calories.
6. Waiting at the passport control line: 10 calories.
7. Running to the security control area: 10 minutes, 50 calories.
8. Realizing they've forced you to leave the secure area, despite being in transit and that you have to go through the entire security process again with everyone else: 10 calories.
9. Waiting in line to go through security again: 10 calories.
10. Going through security: 10 calories.
11. Watching security remove and throw away your duty free items, despite being in transit: 10 calories.
       -this of course, thanks to the great decision of having transit passengers exit the terminal to reenter it.
12. Running to the gate: 15 minutes, 80 calories.
13. Cool down: 10 minutes.
14. Realizing Iberia has changed the gate number while you waited: 10 calories.
15. Realizing you're at the wrong gate with little time to board: 10 calories.
16. Running to the new gate on the other side of the terminal: 15 minutes, 80 calories.
17. Cool down: 10 minutes.
18: Realizing the plane is delayed: 10 calories.
19. Realizing the gate number has changed yet again: 10 calories.
20. Running to the new gate number: 8 minutes, 45 calories.
21. Cool down: 10 minutes in front of the flight board to make sure the gate hasn't changed again.
22. Final boarding.

Approximate total time elapsed between one thing and another including rest time and delays: 2 and a half hours.
Original amount of time available to get to the connecting flight: 2 hours.
Approximate calories burned: 525

This program will certainly help a large number of people in keeping the exercise routines they were unable to do while traveling, so kudos to Madrid for considering the fitness crowd and for encouraging people to exercise while at their airport. They continue to improve their program throughout the years, adding inefficiency wherever they can. The recent train is especially notable in that it takes less time to cross London on the tube. Be sure to experience this wonderful new anti-obesity program for yourself by traveling through Madrid, preferably to another domestic destination within Spain, making sure you'll enjoy the fantastic personality of the lovely security personnel. Control your desire to rip them a new one as best as you can. Oh, and be sure to leave plenty of time for your connection, two hours minimum.

Related links:

Iberia: If you've never flown with this airline, now owned by British Airways, the experience is like visiting an exotic location in itself.
Madrid Airport: The main organizers of this wonderful exercise program.

Please note: Your travel experience may vary. None of the information in this article is designed to be accurate or official. To get more accurate information, please contact agents Moulder and Sculley at your local law enforcement agency.

Keywords: Madrid, airport, Iberia, traveling, travel, satire, exercise, obesity, Spain, connecting, flight, transport, security, fitness.

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