beats stair climbing when it comes to calories burned for the time
expended. Other than using a stair machine, there aren’t many
opportunities to climb more than a few stories before having to descend
and climb again, thereby reducing the efficiency of a workout. But
you’re in luck because, as they have for the past five years, the
American Lung Association is again conducting its signature event, Fight
for Air Stair Climb, at High Point Place, overlooking the river in
downtown Fort Myers on Saturday, April 28.
be scared off, as too many otherwise active folks who enjoy running or
walking 5Ks and other similar events apparently have been, at least from
comments I hear. There’s a misperception that climbing 30 stories is
too difficult and beyond the average person’s ability, not to mention
that it takes too long. In reality, this undertaking is as hard as you
make it; the efficiency of ascending stairs is high due primarily to the
effects of gravity. Currently, the record time for the 30-story High
Point Place climb is 2 minutes and 24 seconds, which is indeed very fast
and was set by a top-notch runner who probably competes in 5Ks (3.1
miles) in less than 15 or 16 minutes, which is also quite speedy. But
the average time for this 541-step climb is somewhere in the 8-minute
range, which would approximate a 35-45 minute 5K, a time that the
majority of participants can handle, including walkers. So if you’ve been thinking of taking part in this or any other Fight for Air
Stair Climb around the country but consider it way too difficult, put it
in the perspective of a 5K and reconsider. Besides, you’ll have fun at
High Point’s post-event pool-deck party, plus you’ll walk away with a
real sense of accomplishment for both your physical feat and financial
contribution to lung disease research.
An all too common sight — isn’t that an ashtray next to the bench?Staying
on the topic of lung disease, tobacco use is but one of the causes.
There are many non-smokers who are victims of one or another of the
numerous lung-related afflictions, which include everything from asthma
to pneumonia to tuberculosis. But for smokers, there is certainly a
significant chance of acquiring a lung disease because of tobacco use.
For those who are stuck on tobacco, engaging in regular aerobic activity
is a good way to become convinced that quitting will make the activity
of choice that much easier (or even possible, in many cases).
Participating in the Fight for Air Stair Climb challenge could be the
first step to making this positive change happen.
good reason for quitting tobacco use, particularly smoking, is the
positive effects it’ll have on our environment in terms of reducing
litter that’s created by tossed butts and discarded empty cigarette
packs, something that’s totally out of control. What is it that makes so
many of those who smoke feel it’s OK to make the world their personal
ashtray? Whether you decide to quit or not, refrain from engaging in the
antisocial behavior of littering.
how many traffic-related deaths and injuries our area experiences —
well above the national and state averages, with around a quarter of
them being pedestrians and bicyclists, a proportion that’s almost double
what it is nationally — it’s about time we took this epidemic
seriously. Those who design and build our roads, make
transportation-related policy and enforce traffic laws are always
working on this persistent problem, with the latter group becoming more
engaged than ever. But those who matter most — we road users — don’t
seem to be getting the message or are choosing to ignore it, thus the
pain, suffering and expense of having one of the worse traffic safety
records in the country continues. Check BikeWalkLee’s blog (www.bikewalklee.blogspot.com)
to see what’s happening in our area as it relates to efforts to reduce
death and injury on our roads. And vow to become part of the solution by
behaving responsibly when on our roads.
Purish, retiring North Fort Myers track and cross country teams coach
who I featured in my last column, spent almost 40 years — not 30 — in
the school district, a public-service run that’s as impressive as her
positive impact on so many has been. Sorry for short-changing you,
Until next time, I’ll look for you on the roads and trails.
Dan Moser is CyclingSavvy instructor/ trainer and program director for
Florida Bicycle Association who cycles, runs and walks regularly for
transportation, recreation and fitness. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 334- 6417.