Saturday, April 24, 2010

Final Climb Report and a Video Shoot

Final Climb Report
I got to the Aon Building at 7:45am and I'm still not sure if it was such a good idea to get there that early. My start time for my climb wasn't until 11:00am but I wanted to meet up with a couple of friends (one new , one old). But as I waited my anxiety level started catching up to my excitement level. Looking up at the building, it was starting to look very daunting and all the "what did I just get myself into" questions kept popping up!!
Aon Building

So I tried to keep busy looking at the booths people were still setting up and check out the VIP tent, which I qualified for through many friends and family who were very generous in sponsoring me. I thank you all!!
Waiting my turn!

At 8:45am the first wave of climbers started getting ready for their 9:00am start time! These were the serious climbers who race up! This year's winner came in with a time of 8 minutes and 9 seconds! Incredible!

Met up with Rita (new friend),
With Rita

and Edwin (old friend) and his friend Tina. I hadn't seen Edwin in over 25 years! He is still the same funny guy!
With Edwin


Then it was finally time to go!

I started out enough fine. Everyone told me to pace myself and not burnout, "which is a mistake many people make." Every 5 floors I would take a couple of minutes then tackle the next 5 floors. By the 35th floor, I was dying! When I got to the 40th floor, quite honestly, I was considering quitting.

Then 5 Los Angeles Fire Fighters, in full gear!! started to pass me! As they passed me, they told me "c'mon! don't quit!" That's when I started taking a break every 2 floors! When I got to the 50th floor, I got a second wind and tried to get back to 5 floors at a time, which was stupid!! I had the breath, I wasn't breathing too hard but my legs were burning!! went back to 2 floors at a time.

When I got to the 60th floor, I knew I beat this building!

Then only 3 more floors to the roof and the end!!


I was so excited that I made it to the top!! I doubt if I would do it again. I would like to do more of this type of activity. Not the run of the mill marathon, 10 or 5K. Edwin suggested that I join him for the Irvine Lake Mud Run in July. That looks and sound interesting! Hmmmm. I'll have to think it over, for now I have a date with a very soft pillow!

Thank you again everyone for all generosity, your support and all your words of encouragement leading up to, during, and after this milestone in my life and the my pursuit to a healthier second half! When I get out of the hospital I will thank you all properly!

Video Shoot
My sister, Celia is the producer for a short film directed by the Oscar nominated writer Iris Yamashita for her screenplay of Letters from Iwo Jima. Celia had asked me if I would help and be part of the crew loading/unloading and maybe driving the van. I was able to help with picking up equipment all over town (Friday), loading and unloading sound and lighting equipment (Friday and Saturday), and general help during the Saturday afternoon shoot.
After the Climb, my brother in law, Jim and Wonton headed straight to the location. It was fascinating seeing what went into a production. I sort of had an idea what went into one but to actually see it happening was great. It can get tedious just by the sheer number of times scenes had to be shot but seeing the changes in camera angles to me was new!
The video featured hip hop dancing artists dancing in wheelchairs. There were two faces in the cast who were familiar only in face. I did not know what they looked like but I was familiar with their names or the groups/show they were in and they were Phillip Chbeeb from So You Think You Can Dance fame and Yuri Tag from America's Next Best Dance Crew, season 1.
As the day wore on, I was starting to really feel the climb but I had to get a picture with some of the cast during one of the breaks!
The video will be shown during the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival on May 2.
Here I am with Phillip Chbeeb, Arielle Coker, Di "Moon" Zhang, and Yuri Tag.

Well, it was more than a full day! See you when I come out of the coma!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Twas the night before Stairs

Ok, it is the night before the big stair climb and I am nervous and excited! I am scheduled to start my climb at 11:00am! I've been saying that I should be able to complete the climb in an hour and a half. My left knee has been a little stiff this week but I think as I start the climb it should loosen up.
I will be updating my climb (signal willing) through my Twitter account and I've set it up so that my Facebook will also be getting the same updates. So I apologize in advance for all the updates you will all be receiving tomorrow from both sites.
I will post the picture from the roof!!!

Because it is a fundraiser for the American Lung Association, my sponsorship page will remain active throughout the day!

Thank you again for all your support and encouragement! See you from the top!!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Angels Game

The American Lung Association sent me 4 tickets to an Angels Game for the funds I've raised for my Fight For Air Climb on the 24th. So, I sent out a "Who wants to go?!" shout. After a couple of "I'm in" and "Oops, I can't go now", we ended up with Stephanie, mom and me! Mom and I have never been to an Angels game as we aren't baseball fans. In fact, the last time I went to a baseball game at the park/stadium Steve Garvey and Ron Cey were the focus of the team (did I just date myself with that one?).
Any way, we had a great time. I must say I was not expecting the tickets to be the best seats in the house but 2 more rows up and we would have been on "top of the world!!"


Me on first!
Angel on first

Me stealing second!
Angel is stealing second!

Stephanie, mom and me from the third highest row in the stadium(see the 2 rows behind us?)!
Stephanie, Mom and me!

We had a lot of fun! So the season is just starting? *gears turning*

Sunday, April 18, 2010

One more WEEK!!

Ok, everyone! It is almost here! This week, I've gotten to the 75% mark in my training for the Fight For Air Climb. I've logged 1035 steps on the stairs twice last week! This coming week, I'll be concentrating on stamina. 100% will happen at the actual event this Saturday!

Thank you everyone for all you support and encouragement these past 4 weeks! Yes, it was exactly 4 weeks ago when I decided to do this! I will be letting my legs rest this coming week so I won't be at my usual spot at the stairs in Long Beach.

I will be headed out to the Aon Building Saturday morning, I plan on getting there for the 8:00am check in and find out which wave I am assigned to for the climbing order. The Climb is scheduled to send up the last wave of climbers at noon, so the whole climbing event should be over by 2:00pm or shortly afterwards. The ground level streets will be blocked off for a party with food and entertainment for everyone so if you can come down it would be great!

Depending on whether there is signal in the stairwells, I will be updating my climb on Twitter and since they are connected, on my Facebook page too.

Again, Thank you everyone for all your support! I am told that my American Lung Association sponsorhip page will remain open up to the day of the event (hint, hint).

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Cross training

Concrete Bashing

I have been getting some great progress with my preparation for my Fight For Air Climb with regards to my training. My recovery time from have been faster and I must admit I'm starting to enjoy it! I know! Me! Enjoying exercise!
Today, instead of hitting the track, I opted for upper body strength training (at the higher floors I will be using/relying on the rails more). My neighbor was removing a driveway that he had installed for a trailer he no longer owns. So he was trying to reclaim some lawn space. So this is what we did...


Using a 10-lb sledge hammer, we broke up about 2 tons of concrete, loaded it on his truck and unloaded it on another neighbor's yard at the end of the street who wanted/needed them. I was feeling pretty good until this evening. I was starting to feel where I will be sore tomorrow. I hope it doesn't last too long. Tomorrow morning is stair training day.
I will be at these stairs tomorrow morning.
Training stairs

I've done it 10 times twice last week and on Monday (which would put me somewhere between the 32nd and 33rd floors of the Aon Bldg). Tomorrow morning, I'm shooting for 15 times. Too bad going down doesn't count otherwise I'm all set! Oh well!

Thank you again everyone for your generosity and "atta boy" support! It really helps quite a bit! 18 more days!!!

Friday, April 02, 2010

Fight For Air Update

Training update

Well, there are only 3 weeks left for my Sky scraper Climb! I’ve been steady with my training for this and I have to admit it hasn’t been easy! The main thing that has been keeping me going is all your generosity! I’ve raised my donation goal 3 times just to keep up with all of you! To date, I’ve raised over $800 with only 19 sponsors! I’ve also gotten tons of emails and texts of support and “atta boys!” that spurs me on.

Last Wednesday, I was able to do 690 steps (which would put me between the 32nd and 33rd floors) in 45 minutes. At least a third of that was going back down the steps (longest stairs I could find are the steps at Bluff Park in Belmont Shores with 69 steps).
1 of 5
So, I’m thinking that I should be able to get to the roof of the Aon Building in 1.5 hours (I’m taking in consideration more breaks as I get higher).

The Fight for Air Climb will be taking place on April 24th. The first set of climber will start at 9am and the last set will start at 12. There will be a Post Climb Festival at street level with “for a fun celebration with food, entertainment, exhibitors, and much more!” So, if you can join me there for the party/celebration it would be fantastic! Don’t forget to bring an oxygen canister for me!
The event address is:
Aon Building
707 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Corner of Wilshire Bl. and Hope St.

See you all there!