Swissotel Vertical Marathon 2013

Unbelievable, we really did it! Up 73 storeys, 1,336 steps, and in 22 minutes (only)! Really? I asked, unable to believe this when we reached the top. In the week leading to the climb, my thighs already feel tired when we barely reached storey 4 (and we are talking about climbing to storey 8, ONE training every day). And when I used to climb 10 storeys to home back in my twenties, I was always already cursing when I reached home. So being able to really achieve 73 storeys was really a miracle for me!

Pre-Race Training
– 3 Sundays when Baby1 was at her 45min ballet class, Dear1 and I quickly popped over to the nearby HDB block and did maximum 3 x 13 storeys
– 1 week before the actual race, we climbed the stairs to fetch Baby1 everyday. That was 8 storeys
– 1 week before actual race, Dear1 took the stairs daily to his office on level 3
– A couple of weeks before actual race, I take the stairs up to the MRT platform every morning. Becomes a daily habit for me now.

Race Day
We deposited both Baby1 and Baby2 at the grandparents around 9am, and proceeded to Raffles City. Phew, luckily there were plenty of parking lots, unlike that time when we wanted to park here during the Cold Storage Kids Run. Reporting time was 10.25am, and flag off was 11am. We went to join the queue on the dot, and were surprised to be one of the first teams to flag off.

Feeling very very nervous, I kept thinking that it’s mission impossible. Dear1 has better physiques and thighs, so this could be at best a little challenge for him. For me, stairs was really never my forte, and I just kept feeling very very nervous. 73 storey!!!

5, 4, 3, 2, 1! And off we went with 2 other couple in the Buddies and Besties Challenge. I decided to take this slow and easy. Completion. I just need to reach the top. Climbing is unlike running. If you are tired in a run, you walk, and you still get nearer to the end. But when your legs turn jelly in a vertical marathon, you just remain where you are, no movement. Some people say you can pull yourself up using the hand rails, but yikes, imagine all the sweaty palms pulling themselves on the rails. I’d rather not pull, thanks.

Up, up, up, we trailed before the second couple steadily. Apparently the female is very much like me. Her male counterpart kept looking back for her and encouraging her.

Storey 10. We reached the first rest point (I told Dear1 that every 10 storeys is our rest point). Still feeling great, so we continued the steady climb.

Storey 13. Hey, we reached Set1 of our usual HDB training where we’ll usually be panting and sweating hard by now. So far okay! Not much pant nor much sweat!

Storey 30. Hey, almost halfway there le. Our female pace-setter was showing signs of being more physically inferior now, so I decided to over take her.
Up, up, up. I hear loud cheers, and heavy pants. Oh, the Everest team. Being very laden with additional weights and face mask for their Mount Everest training, they are kind of a noisy distraction here. Over take, quick! So I fasten my pace and out paced them in few strides.

40, 50. We stopped at both rest points to catch our breaths. Already more than halfway, way surpassing all our training. And we are still going okay. Checked – no Everest Team. Checked – Let the over taking teams go first cos I don’t want to block their way, and we pushed on ahead.

53, 54, 55. Ermm, not feeling good, I can feel myself losing focus. But next stop is 60. One more stop at 70, and we’re almost there. How can give up!? 56, 57….. 60! Cannot, I’m gonna faint. Gotta sit down rest……….

63, 64, 65… 70. Eh, how come the sensor is here? And the windings of the stairs is different now, there isn’t a convenient nook to rest. All the way. 71, 72, 73, and we’re there.

Though the sun is not very bright, and people say you have to enjoy the scenery when you are finally up here, I can’t open my eyes. Got Dear1 to take a picture for momento’s sake, and I asked Dear1 to bring me down. Damn, there isn’t a lift on the roof top, you need to walk DOWN to storey 70 to take the lift down. Everyone only told me about the satisfaction when you reach the top. Why did no one ever mention that you need to be able to walk down the stairs with jelly legs too.

Back to ground floor, I took nearly 30 minutes to recuperate before regaining my senses.

Amazing. Really mission impossible becomes mission possible. Like Dear1 says, before you do a vertical marathon yourself, you’d think that it’s mission impossible. Having achieved this ourselves, we know it’s really mission possible. Would we do this next year? Nah, since we now know it’s possible. See you at Standard Chartered Full Marathon 2014. :p

– Dear2

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