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Published: September 28th 2008
Each day I wake up around 6:00 till 6:15, jump out of bed, use my eyedrops, clean up, get dressed, put on a heavy sweater and gloves then head out the door to practice Tai Chi on the top of the hill. I really need my early morning quiet exercise. I am lucky enough this year again to have a student who is willing to get up and meet me that early. The two of us shiver on the cold mornings but then have a great time preparing for the day by this ancient Chinese discipline, meditation, exercise.
But there are times when I wonder why I need that morning exercise. All day from that early morning climb up the stairs and up the steep hill till the late evening when I return to my room, I seem to be exercising all day long. How? By climbing up and down the stairs. I will list the various stairways that come between me and my various destinations of the day. I think I have pictures of most if not all of them. After you see them, I believe you will know why my legs are either worn out or much much
stronger after I have been here for a few months.
The pictures aren't beautiful, but there are a LOT of them since around here, on this hill, there are a LOT of staircases.
Now, here is your "homework". I am going to recount a typical day. See if you can count how many steps I made up and down staircases last Thursday.
I woke up, got ready to exercise, left the building (1 step down 10 steps up), walked up the stairway to the hill ( 22 ) climbed the steep hill, did my tai chi with Yuliya, walked down the hill, down the stairs ( 22 ), back into the building and ate my breakfast, left the cafeteria (9 up), cleaned my teeth, got my books, went to chapel (down ?), prayed, went to class (down 15-down steep hill, down 7 to bridge through building, (down 4,) out door (down 23) to library (up 2 down 2), across courtyard to classroom building (up 12), opened door, inside building to classroom (up 44), taught 1 hour, down to coffee break (down 55), back to classroom (up 55), down to lunch (down 55), to cafeteria (up 47 across
short uphill area (up 8 ) to room for ticket (up 9), back to cafeteria (down 9), finished lunch, go to brush teeth (up 9), back to classroom, (down 47), inside building to classroom (up 55) taught, back to English office (down 55) across courtyard (up 23) inside building (up 4 then up 21), back to my room (down 21 across bridge (up 7) up steep hill, (up 15) inside building (down 1 up 11), grabbed gift for baby, (down 47) through reception (down 11), ate birthday cake, back to room (up 11 up 47), remembered to take batteries to person on 4th floor (up and down two different staircases (total 132). By then the day was pretty well over and I ceased uping and downing. I was too tired to even count how many steps there are down to chapel or to take a picture of those stairs.
After Bill's knee surgery a few years ago, we came here and when he saw his orthopedic surgeon when we came home, the doctor said he should send all his patients here for the excellent rehab all these stairs gave him.
Finally, just to keep it up during the
weekends you need to get away from campus. See those photos too.
You either come to IBTS in good shape or you get in shape FAST. Everyone who lives here full time obviously qualifies as either a mountain goat or a mountain climber by definition. njpl
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