Big Climb Seattle, I ascended the 1,311 stairs of the Columbia Center as an untimed climber. This year, I went as a racer. Last year, I passed a number of people on the stairs. This year, I stepped aside in the landings for the faster people. I didn't share my goal with anyone, but now that it's over, I can say that I wanted to make it up the stairs in less than 20 minutes. My time: 17 minutes, 19.04 seconds.
Bede and Lucia did the Big Climb this year as untimed climbers. Bede said that Lucia went all the way up without complaining. At the top, she said, "I am so proud of myself." This utterance is not the result of the Too Much Self-Esteem generation, but of being teased for being the slowest runner in her class. She is welcome to invite all of those faster runners to join her for next year's Big Climb.
Tomorrow, I turn 40. When I was a child, I thought that by the time I became "middle-aged," I would have to wear yellow polyester shirts, beige polyester pants, and Dr. Scholl's wooden sandals with socks. My hair would have gone completely grey, and I'd wear it up in a bun with a lot of hair escaping to create a frizzy effect. I suppose that in the 1970s, some people did look that way. I can't say now if those people were middle-aged or not, as 12 seemed practically grown-up to me.
I'm in better shape than I was as a teen, or for most of my twenties. I plan to continue my fitness plan, and introduce strength-training so that I don't lose muscle as I age. And age I will. I'm not resigned. Despite all evidence to the contrary, a part of me still thinks I'm going to beat this concept of mortality.
At the very least, I want to be around when humans land on Mars!