Stan’s Obligatory Blog

Happy Halloween

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9/8/2010

Second attempt

Filed under: — stan @ 10:42 pm

Today was the second practice session at the Wells Fargo building. I did some math in preparation. My goal for the U.S. Bank Tower climb is to do 14 minutes or less.

170lb = 77kg

1018ft = 310m
77kg * 310m * 9.8 = 233,926J
14min = 840sec
233,926/840 = 278.5W

So that’s my target power output. The Wells Fargo building is 723ft tall, but the climb is just up to the last landing before the roof, so that’s about 10 feet below roof level.

713ft = 220m
77kg * 220m * 9.8 = 163,748J
163,748J / 278.5W = 588 sec = 9:48

So my goal for today was to go under 9:48. I’d done 9:52 last week, so this seemed within reach.

Erik and I headed downtown after work to try our legs on the stairs. There was a woman there who beat me by 3 seconds at the Aon climb last April, so I started out just a little bit behind her, hoping to keep pace. I set my metronome to the same pace as last week, hoping I’d be better able to keep up with it this time. And as usual, by the time I got to about the 30th floor, I was in Great Pain. But this is nothing to be alarmed at. It’s quite normal for these sorts of things. The pain just ramps up during the first 25-30 floors and then it just stays about the same the rest of the way. The trick is to push through it and keep going.

When I got to the top I had 9:33, which I was quite pleased with. The woman I’d talked to at the bottom was there already. She said she was disappointed in her time of 9:22. Well, at least that explained why I didn’t catch up to her. Still, my time works out to almost 291W, which is more than my goal, and I’m pleased with that.

When Erik got there, we went up on the roof and had a look at the view, including the U.S. Bank Tower down the street.

Next week I’m going to try doing it twice. The Wells Fargo building is almost exactly 1/2 the height of the Willis (formerly Sears) Tower in Chicago that I’m signed up to climb in November.

It was a fun time.

9/5/2010

The Topiary Tour

Filed under: — stan @ 9:34 pm

Today’s bike ride was a new version of the original Topiary Tour. I’d found a couple of new topiary sites to add to it, and we even found a couple more along the way.

We began with a short jaunt up to Altadena and the Bunny Museum with its big topiary rabbit on the front lawn. Then down to the Elks Lodge in Pasadena and the elk’s heads by the door. The pegasus at the Mobil station on Lake Avenue was badly in need of a trim. It was barely recognizable.

In Arcadia, we saw what we think was a topiary swan that looked a lot more like a bathtub rubber duck. And in Baldwin Park, we passed a house that has several topiary animals in the yard. Then we went by the original topiary site. The one that first gave me the idea to to a Topiary Tour. The topiary teddy bears in Covina.

Our snack stop was at Classic Coffee in Old Town Glendora. Then, on the way back, we spotted a topiary deer, two dolphins, and a teddy bear in front of two houses along Leadora Ave.

We continued on through Azusa and back into Monrovia, where we passed the topiary hearts on Colorado Blvd. And the final topiary stop was the big rocking horse on Grand View Ave in Sierra Madre.

It was a fun little themed ride.

47 miles.
cycling

9/3/2010

Fifteen times!

Filed under: — stan @ 6:41 pm

On Thursday, I took Lucinda to Disneyland. A lot of schools are back in session now, but Pasadena doesn’t start for another ten days, so we figured it would be a good time to go. We also had made a deal that Lucinda was going to ride California Screamin’ this time. She’d passed on it twice when we were there back in June.

When we got there, we went in and rode Soarin’ Over California first. For some reason, Lucinda didn’t want to go directly to the big roller coaster. But after that ride, we walked over there and got in line. Fortunately, the line was very short, since Lucinda was looking decidedly like a lamb being led to slaughter. In the pictures, you can see she was very skeptical. But when we got off, she said, “That was so fun! Let’s do it again!”. And we proceeded to do it three more times.

The girls also rode the Silly Symphony Swings once somewhere in there.

Next, we went to lunch and then had some ice cream. Then we went back and rode California Screamin’ three more times. Now we were up to seven, and Maddy and I said we wanted to do something else. So we walked over the Disneyland.

We rode Space Mountain three times, Splash Mountain once, Big Thunder Mountain twice, and the Matterhorn once. And after all that, we went back to California Adventure and rode California Screamin’ eight more times. That made a total of fifteen for the day. We probably would have kept going, but they were shutting the ride down at 8:00 for the World of Color show. So that made for a good excuse to stop.

Finally, we walked over to Downtown Disney for our usual dinner at the Jazz Kitchen.

It was a very fun day.

The rest of the pictures are here.

The short version of the story

Filed under: — stan @ 6:38 am

We went to Disneyland yesterday. This is the short version of the story:



9/1/2010

More practice…

Filed under: — stan @ 11:49 pm

Today was the first training session at the Wells Fargo building in downtown Los Angeles. It’s 55 stories, and that’s close enough to be a good simulation of the U.S. Bank Tower climb. I’ve been practicing with my metronome set just a little bit faster recently, so I wanted to see how that would go on a big climb.

As it turned out, it was as hard or harder than I’d anticipated. Near the end I was having trouble keeping up with the metronome. But it worked out all right. I’d calculated that I needed to to the 55 stories in 10:05 or less to be on track to do the U.S. Bank Tower in less than 14 minutes. And my time was 9:52. So things are good in my world. If I can maintain that pace, that would get me to the top in 13:30, which would be very good.

The next training session is next Wednesday, so I’m going to see if I can shave a few seconds off that time. Onward and upward.

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