Thursday, 12 June 2014

Trek to the Top Challenge

All my friends appear to be taking part in a fitness regime these days.  The hugely popular Facebook craze '30 Day Abs Challenge', created by mum of eight, Robyn Mendenhall Gardner, has changed my sedentary pals into crunchers, plankers and leg lifters.  If I knew how to crunch I may have joined them!

Not to be outdone by my toned up, trimmed down friends, I decided that action needed to be taken if I wanted to get the beach fit body I craved.

I may have hung up my running shoes after completing my half marathon back in 2012, but there is nothing stopping me from dusting them off and putting them to good use once more.  Running is out of the question as my knees creak louder than my floorboards these days, so I wanted to keep it simple-ish!

Walking up stairs/steps is a wonderful way to tone your bum and legs but instead of looking at my flight of stairs as just a means to get to the first floor, I'm going to turn it into a challenge of lofty proportions!

At our Weight Watchers meeting last year we were introduced to the pedometer, a nifty little device that records every step you take.  Members shared their success stories of how walking helped with their weight loss, body confidence and health issues.  The members magazine 'Your Week' included a chart for some of the world's most iconic buildings and how many steps there were to the top.

This looked like a great way to inject some fun into my challenge.  I'm aiming for the Empire State Building, New York.  Nope, I haven't booked a flight or packed my suitcase, I can do this challenge from the comfort of my own home.

I have listed some of these iconic buildings below and worked out how many stairs/steps I need to take each day to reach the top of the Empire State Building.
  • Sydney Opera House, Australia - 85 Steps
  • Big Ben, UK - 126 Steps
  • St Paul's Cathedral, UK - 146 Steps
  • Blackpool Tower, UK - 207 Steps
  • Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy - 242 Steps
  • Eiffel Tower, Paris - 420 Steps
  • Empire State Building, New York - 500 Steps
Starting on July 1st I will be doing 25 steps a day.  I can either break them up in to chunks or do them in one go.  For example,

July 1st - 25 Steps
July 2nd - 25 Steps
July 3rd - 25 Steps
July 4th - 25 Steps
July 5th - 25 Steps - I'm 1 away from the top of Big Ben!

Of course if you fancy a tougher challenge you could increase your daily steps and make it close to the top of the CN Tower in Toronto (725 Steps), or increase your daily steps to 35 and you will make it to the top of Burj Khalifa in Dubai which is 1086 Steps.

To keep me motivated I am going to print off a beautiful photograph of the Empire State Building and tape it to the wall at the top of the stairs, that way I can visualise my goal with every step I take.  One day I hope to revisit New York and if I keep up with my walking practise I may be able to sprint to the top of the real thing!

Do you want to join me on my trek to the top?  Or are you a member of the 30 Day Abs brigade?  Either way, good luck to you all and please let me know how you are getting on - or if you have any other top tips for a beach fit body!

Photographs via


  1. Love it Shell, you are so innovative xx

  2. I'm doing the abs challenge, but seemed to have stalled on day 9. Maybe I've reached my elastic limit!

    1. Julia I am so impressed that you made day 9! If you asked me to do 45 sit ups I would roll myself into a ball and cry! Congratulations on getting this far, just remember - today's pain is tomorrow's perfect stomach ;-)

  3. This sounds great fun, good luck!

    1. Thanks Terry, I'll report back once I make it to the top haha ;-)