New stereotypes for fringe sports: The Japanese love hot dogs and Germans enjoy step aerobics. You can blame Thomas Dold for that last one.
The 25-year-old German took home a fifth consecutive title in the annual Empire State Building Run-Up, which is exactly as it sounds: contestants bolt up 86 flights of stairs, or 1,576 total steps. Dold's time of 10 minutes and 16 seconds meant he trekked up one story about every seven seconds, or about two-and-a-half steps per second. Dude's quicker than the elevator in my old college dorm. His margin of victory was 40 seconds, so he might've even been able to stop and relieve himself in the restroom. But we'll never know.
The women's champion, New Zealander Melissa Moon, scaled the building in 13:13. What a bunch of tourists.
But of course, like all feats of endurance, it's not always about who wins, but who finishes. The oldest contestant, 76-year-old Ginette Bedard from Howard Beach, New York, finished at 22:35. By comparison, this article probably took about 22 minutes to complete. Who's the real symbol of endurance here?
I commend the Empire State Building for holding this annual race. At some point, when the atmosphere proves to be too polluted for human lungs, all races, 5K charity races, and fun runs will take place within skyscrapers.
Photo via New York Road Runners