Tag Archives: Heron Tower
Less than one week to go before the Faas Climb!
To tackle these 888 steps I’m going to have to become a stair climbing machine.
I’ve got less than a week to do it in and a nagging ankle injury that will (no doubt) give me some grief along the way. I decided to consult with some of the fitness professionals I work with for any useful advice they could offer.
I explained many stairs needed to be climbed, my target finish time, how the event will be staged (we go in waves instead of all at once, dependent on our “predicted” finish time), etc – I then asked each one the following question:
What should I focus on in order to get the best possible time on this climb?
Here, next to the names of the trainers, are their (helpful?) answers:
- “Bench press. Do loads of it. The bigger you are the better..” – Dave
- “Do something that involves your legs!” – Chrissie
- “Eat” – Tim
- “I find that playing games on my iPad helps” – Lawrence
- “A couple of pints laced with shots will get you up those stairs, mate” – Ryan
As you can see, my colleagues are fountains of knowledge, so I decided to train for the climb as follows:
- Single leg work: Squats, deadlifts, step-ups
- Stair climb: Either Angel or Mansion house tube station’s as they have pretty huge staircases
- Back and arm work: I will be putting as much work through my back and arms as possible on the climb. The more stress I can take from my legs the better. I will do this by pulling myself up and along with the bannister as much as possible.
- Treadmill hill climbs – Mostly for my cardiovascular fitness and endurance. The incline will be ramped-up as much as possible over extended periods of time.
Spotted this earlier. Crazy.
The photo – modelled on Charles C Ebbets’s famous 1932 original, Lunch atop a Skyscraper – was taken by Michael Crompton, 61, as he worked on Heron Tower in central London last year. The 46-floor building is the third tallest in the capital.
Luckily, I’ll be on the inside of the Heron Tower when I do the Faas Climb challenge.
Source: Daily Mail
Sadly, my visit to Heron Tower did nothing to distil my fears. If anything, it compounded them!
First I had to get past the rather impressive gauntlet of security; a rather large and inquisitive porter called Peter, a well-dressed security guard on the inside of the revolving doors and a complex three-tiered receptionist system.
After managing to get past all of these by saying that I was here to ‘take a look at the layout of the stairwell’ and ‘take some pictures too’, a rather serious looking man appeared. I came clean and he very kindly showed me towards the starting point of the run, deep in the basement of the tower.
While dazzling the maintenance manager (he looked a bit bored really) with my graceful ‘trial strides’ up the stairs and around the corners, I managed to take some pictures.
The stairs looked eerie. Tall and menacing with 9 steps on the straights and 4 steps on the turns between landing areas, they sat, both mocking and silent. In short, the stairwell is glass and stainless steel throughout.
If the 29/10/11 is even a mildly warm day, then I pity everyone taking part. Just walking up two flights I could really feel the heat.
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*Well, it’s easy if you take the lift.
I’ve just signed up for the Faas Climb which involves joining 799 other people as we attempt to run/walk/crawl all 888 steps or 37 of the 46 floors of Heron Tower.
It’s the tallest building in the City of London!
Over the next month I will do everything in my power to get up Heron Tower as quickly as possible. I will keep you posted once or twice a week via this blog. You can keep a closer eye on my progress (or lack there of) by following me on twitter – @ybny_luke – where I will keep you intimately updated on all the little annoyances/personal victories and heartache that I encounter along the way.