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Thread: Simply Paul - Going up in the world!

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jun 2012

    Red face Simply Paul - Going up in the world!

    Forum regulars will know I like to do a bit for charity but I'm limiting myself to a single event this year because I'm aware of 'Giving Fatigue'. My other challenges (Silverstone Half Marathon, Bupa10k etc) will be just for my entertainment.

    That one event is for Shelter, the housing charity. Having missed out on a 1Km Guinness World Record for 'Tower Running' by just 70 metres last year, on March the 5th I'll be trying again during their Vertical Rush event at Tower 42. Now in its fifth year, this race is held up the 902 steps and 51 floors (nine unnumbered) of the former NatWest Tower in London. Last year I climbed the 165m/542ft office block nine times in non-stop succession to raise funds - thank you for your support in 2012 ( and 2011 ( However, because the tower was slightly shorter than the 920 step/180m I'd been told, I failed to get the 1Km/hour vertical record by about five minutes and didn't hit the hoped-for vertical mile either, stopping at 93%. As I said when I found out much later, "******."

    So I'm back in 2013 to try again, planning to cover the 102 flights of steps TEN times as quickly as possible, to secure that vertical mile once and for all. I was very disappointed to discover I'd not got the record last April, when I was able to get an accurate figure for the height of the top floor above street level. Happily, Shelter have agreed to let me try again and I've been training hard to get my heart, lungs and legs in top condition to join a very different Mile High club! It's quite a strain physically but I enjoyed myself last time and I'm keen to give it another go. Raising money for a very important cause is just a bonus, but I hope people will want to support what I'm trying to achieve. My burning thighs will thank them!

    So my 2013 target is 510 floors, 1020 flights of stairs and 9020 steps in total and if I can cover the first vertical kilometre (3281ft) in less than an hour I'll get the record too. You can see my video of last year's attempt at and to give this thread a hint of Geocaching:

    Any help to hit my 180 (I've already given 40 to take part) target would be really lovely of you. You can support my efforts via Thanks! :socool:

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2012


    Update: It didn't go well, partly because I was sharing a lift and had to wait for it, but mostly because I did the Silverstone half marathon on Sunday and it took a lot more out of my legs than I expected. By floor 5 I knew I was in trouble. By 10 I knew the 1Km/h record wasn't going to happen and by 50 I wondered if I'd be able to finish the vertical mile at all. By floor 80 my legs had turned to wood and by floor 180, stone. Around floor 340 (of 510) they were jelly, but I kept going, needing to stop to rest (unlike last year) and struggled on to finish the 1020 flights of stairs and 9020 steps in 3:12:33 - about half the speed I'd been doing in training. To put it on context, I completed 9 ascents in under 100mins last year, so that extra ascent of 542ft/165m took an additional 92 minutes..!

    So, a failure in terms of speed, but a success in terms of completing it when I really - eyes burning with sweat - really - legs falling off - really - despondently waiting for the lift - didn't want to.

    A sincere thank you to all the kind cachers who've supported me - here's a list - and if my story of 'plucky Brit in abject failure' has moved you to bung a penny per floor Shelter's way, that would be awesome, as I've yet to hit my fundraising target. If I don't reach 180, I have to make up the difference myself and I have already paid 40 (plus 20 petrol, 8.80 train ticket etc) to take part. Times are tough, I know but if you can find a spare fiver...

    Cheers again to those who've been so lovely - it didn't speed me up on the day, but it did stop me quitting.

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