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CN Tower Climb- Times & Perspective- 1776 Step In 10mins 32secs

This morning, two of my close friends and I joined thousand’s of climbers to take part in the WWF-Canada 19th Annual Canada Life CN Tower Climb.

[View photos]

My Times
Back in April 2006 when I first ran up the CN Tower’s stairs, my time was 11:51. This year, I really wanted to break the 11-minute mark, which I did. I managed to climb the CN Tower’s 1776 steps in 10-minutes, 32-seconds.

More Stairs, Even Though It’s Over, = More Swearing
Even though my memory of the climb is rather foggy (thank goodness), I do remember shouting a few select curse words every so often. I think this was in response to the crushing pain in the lungs & legs delivered by the stairs.

When the climb was finally over and I reached the top, the volunteers let me know that I was done, AND that I still had a few more stairs to climb! More stairs??? This is BS! I thought I was done with going up stairs for today. This was when my swearing frequency increased.

Keeping Things In Perspective
The next time I participate in the climb, I’d like to go under-10-minutes.

It’ll hurt 🙂 It probably hurts no matter how fast someone goes up. 

It’s important to keep things in perspective;

  • This is not a competitive event
  • Everyone who manages to go all the way up those steps deserves multiple high-fives (as well as rest)
  • The climb is in support of a good cause
  • My times are a heck of a long way from the record of 7:52 set back in 1989

This is my heart rate data from the climb; can you guess which line indicates my heart rate and which shows the altitude?

Hundreds of people were already in line when we arrived at the registration at 5:45am. Our goal was to be there early enough so that we wouldn’t have to contend with lots of traffic while climbing the stairs. Looks like we’ll have to be there for 5am next time.

From down here…

…to up-there!

Let’s get it on, all the way up!

On our way to the CN Tower, we had to walk through these balloons, which represent how much carbon the ‘average’ Canadian produces each day

12 Responses

  1. Hi Peter!

    Great job! Thats an amazing time! I was right behind you I guess! I finished the climb in 11:37minutes.

    Just like yourself I will be looking to go under 11 minutes next time around.

    Keep up the good work! If you ever want to go for a workout, or show me how to skate. 🙂 let me know.


    Talk soon!

    Trevor Folgering

  2. Hey Guys!

    It’s so awesome that you posted your story. I just came behind you Trevor! I posted a time of 12:01 (6 seconds slower than my previous best). I definitely want to get under 11 minutes the next time around.

    We should train together or something.


  3. Shoot me an email: jas.chau@gmail.com

  4. Hey guys just came across this website and was considering doing the climb in 2010.Wow 7.52, that’s hard to imagine. Congrats. Peter on your time of 10.32. Could you give me any pointers on training and climbing technique? Thanks.

    • Hey there Martin- thanks for writing.

      I found that by losing weight and practicing on stairs simply helped with the climb. I was suffering, but I kept pushing, kept the legs moving, letting the air burn my lungs, but remembering that the burn in the lungs is a symptom of how hard I was working. It’s in the head after you’ve logged the long hours running every day and working and building up the fitness.

      Who knows what times we’ll hit next time out!

  5. Dang. I climb the stairs in my building every day from top to bottom and I came across this site to find out how I was doing relative to the CN tower crowd. I do my stairs in roughly 2 minutes (never timed), but the CN tower is more than 7 times these 242 stairs! I would probably have a miserable 14 minutes… still this stair-climbing routine has lost me about 20 lbs so I’ll keep at it.

  6. Hey Peter!

    Hope all is well! are you doing the climb again this year? Hope to see you there really early!

    I created a association that is dedicated to the sport of stairclimbing

    The Canada StairClimbing Association


    Hope too have you as a member and you can give some of your training secrets away 🙂 Just jokes.

    Being a member is free as well,

    Hope all is well my friend

    Trevor Folgering

  7. Hey Peter
    Sub 10 minutes eh? I would recommend doing the team climb on Thursday, less people means less congestion. Plus I find 5pm is more conducive to good times then 5am.
    You’d be welcome to join my team, we already have the 2008 winner on it, in case you need a lead out:)
    Let me know

  8. How did u trained I want to do it in 14 min
    Any tips

    • Make sure your weight it down. I did a lot of high intensity training (intervals), sprints and weights (for power). Lots of running (4-5 days per week) with aerobic recovery.

      • Hey Peter,
        Simply amazing. May I ask what your height and body weight was when you climbed the tower at your fastest time? I’m planning to try it next year and currently training on stairs by walking 1200 up and down in just under 30 minutes 4x a week. I’m 6 feet tall and weigh 260 lbs. 2 months ago I was a bit over 274. I started in the hope to lose all the weight I could, and then I heard about this CN tower climb and it got my interest, so now I’m hoping to do it myself. I doubt that I could be as fast ad you, but just getting to the top would be cool.

      • Hi – I was roughly 165lbs at the time!

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