I have read several articles about working out on stairs and all of us have seen someone running a stadium in real life or the movies. And of course most of us have heard about the heroic rush of the firefighters, EMS and police at the World Trade Center when they ran up the stairs everyone else was rushing down.
Still I never really thought much about doing it myself, until the other day. I was at Bristol Motor Speedway, The World’s Fastest Half Mile Racetrack and one of the largest sporting venues in the world. We were there in place early, before the fans were allowed in and, as usual, I went to survey the area I was assigned to for any unexpected obstacles and to ensure I was familiar with things. Because I was feeling guilty for not running for a few days I decided to take the stairs… all of them in my area. I was pleased with myself, thinking I had just gotten some pretty good exercise. There are a lot of stairs on the backstretch and I had systematically walked up and down each and every one and seen where all the barriers and vendors were in the whole area. Later in the day, after I had a moment of weakness involving orange cream Italian Ice I decided I should repeat my journey.
It wasn’t until I woke up at the station the next morning that I started to wonder what I had done to myself. When I attempted to stand my calves felt like bricks that were on fire. Eventually I was able to start moving in a direction and shuffled to the car. At the gas station I found that the brief time spent sitting in the car had allowed the pain to spread to my thighs and butt. By the time I got home and tried to walk up the stairs to the bedroom, well I won’t allow myself to use certain words on this blog so I will just say PAIN!
That evening there was Daniel. Yes we are going to run I assured him, someplace nice and flat, not our usual hills. When we arrived there I explained to him, a short run, not to fast, don’t get to far ahead. That young man is fast! Off like a shot! I let him get out to a lead but he wasn’t slowing down, I didn’t want to let him out of sight so here I went, limping, trying not to cry. Ladonna offered to rub my legs but I wasn’t able to stand it. Doing the math I had climbed and descended more than 1 1/2 times the equivalent of Burj Khalifa (the worlds tallest building), almost 5,000 stairs.
Maybe there is something to this stair thing after all. I wouldn’t suggest to anyone that they go from not doing it to some stupid extreme like I did but I do think it has to be a good thing when taken slowly. I will be adding stairs to my work out plan in gearing up for Lilyan’s Run and hopefully it will result in more strength and endurance. If I recover from this adventure.