It’s another Wednesday evening, and time for more stairs. I went downtown with two goals for the evening. One was to do my first climb at a slightly faster pace than I’ve been doing lately, and the second was to get in five climbs for a vertical kilometer. I should have made a third goal, just so I could start this with, “well, two out of three ain’t bad.”
At the last two practices, I’ve been doing my climbs at a modest pace. Basically, that’s the pace I used for when I did the vertical mile. That’s nine floors every two minutes. In this building, that gets me to the top in 11:22. Last week, I’d gone a bit faster on the first climb, and just by accident, I did the first climb in 9:56. So today, I decided to aim for 9:30 for the first climb. On the one hand, that’s almost a minute faster than I’ve been doing, but on the other hand, it’s also a minute slower than my best time for this building. So I worked out splits so I could figure exactly where I should be at each minute boundary. In this case, the plan was to do 16 floors every three minutes. So 5 1/3 per minute.
I went into the stairs at 6:02, and I started up. I was able to maintain the pace pretty well. It was definitely faster than I’ve been doing, but it was nowhere near maximum effort. At each minute boundary I managed to stay right on target. When I hit the 49th floor right at 9 minutes, I knew I had it down. I kept going at the same speed for the last two big floors, and I came out on 51 with a time of 9:29. Right on target.
The elevator ride down seemed to take forever. Looking at the EXIF information in my pictures, I can tell that it took about 6 minutes to get back down.
The plan was to do the rest of the climbs at my regular ‘modest’ pace. So I headed up the second time, aiming to be at the top in 11:22. But I guess I was warmed up or something, and I found myself getting ahead of schedule. When I got to 49, I was almost 40 seconds up, and I didn’t want to crawl up the last two floors just for the sake of stubbornly staying on schedule. So I just kept going and came out on 51 at 10:43.
Again, the elevator ride down took a bit over 6 minutes. Seemed like forever.
The third and fourth times up, I managed to keep to my schedule, getting up to 51 in 11:18 and 11:22. That was good, since I’ve never been able to maintain that pace on the fourth climb after doing a fast first climb. So that’s good. The bad news was that in between climbs three and four, the elevator ride down took a full nine minutes. That meant that I started the fourth climb at 6:55, and the way things were going, I pretty much knew that there was no chance of making it up and back down before the closed the door at 7:10. And that’s what happened. The ride back down took forever once again, and I got back to the start at 7:12. They were just closing the door, and they wouldn’t let any of us go up again. So that was the end of the vertical kilometer.
Still, it was a good outing.