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Darren's heading for the top of the tower
10:30am Friday 1st March 2013 in News
IT WILL be a long way to the top on Tuesday for 47-year-old Darren Wrint-more, as he attempts to run up the 920 steps to the summit of London’s Natwest Tower.
Mr Wrintmore, from Shaw, is taking part in the Vertical Rush challenge on Tuesday, when 1,500 runners race up the 42 floors to the top of the second-tallest tower in the City of London.
The senior project manager signed up for the race when his employer, Fujitsu, appealed for 300 members of staff to take part, and has been training hard at the company’s high-rise headquarters in Bracknell.
He said: “Our offices have 10 floors which has been quite good for getting used to the effort required to do tower running, but the NatWest tower has 42 floors so I have had to run multiple repetitions to get the required benefit.
“It’s a good job the majority of the office users choose to take the lift, which left the stairway pretty clear for my training runs.”
As an experienced marathon runner and vice-president of the Avon Valley Runners running club he is used to tackling long distances, but admits that stair running posed a very different challenge.
He said: “My preparation suffered something of a setback – after finding a video of the 2012 Vertical Rush, I noticed with horror that the runners were going up an anti-clockwise stairwell, while I have been training on a clockwise one.
“This is very important as I have discovered that you tend to use your arms a lot more in tower running, and being right-handed this has helped me propel myself up the Fujitsu building in under 75 seconds – but I need to adjust to using my weaker left arm.”
He is hoping to raise over £500 for homelessness charity Shelter through sponsorship from friends and family. He said: “Shelter is our corporate charity so we have got a long-standing relationship with them as an organisation.
“It does great work in trying to keep families in their homes which is becoming all the more difficult with the rising cost of living.”
To donate to the cause visit www.sponsorme.co. uk/darrenwrintmore/the-vertical-rush