Stepping out.

Yesterday I decided to forego shaving my legs. I haven’t inherited a small fortune or the pain tolerance level to switch to waxing and I am not advocating a more natural look. I simply ran out of time. Has that ever happened to you?

To be on time for a dinner date a decision had to be made: do I go another day engaging my muscles only to sit upright at my office desk or do I step out…and up? I bolted for my front door and the stairwell a few energetic strides beyond it.

Eleven flights down, 15 up, 15 down and 11 up. Pick the right tempo of music for your iPhone or iPod and you’re done before Van Morrison or Michael Buble can sing about a third affair. Some music has even inspired me to toss in a few upper body and hip Zumba movements during my assent.

I am motivated by a craving for endorphins during rainy season and less jiggle to my thighs. Fact is, it’s a cheap, convenient, effective workout. According to, “A focused 30 minutes of step climbing can burn almost 300 calories.” The site goes on to list other benefits: increased fitness level, low-impact, lower cholesterol levels. I repeat…firm thighs and endorphins.

Last July I started climbing stairs at the suggestion of my friend Mary Hinckley to increase my endurance on trail hikes around Multnomah Falls. It’s bottom up on those trails; downhill sections start after the summit.

Get out and climb a few stairs, forge a few streams. It’s a great pick me up.


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