American Lung Association Vertical Mile Challenge

American Lung Association Vertical Mile Challenge

Sure, you ran a mile back in high school, everybody had to in Phys. Ed. Sure, you could do it again if you really wanted to. But my guess is that you couldn’t do it like Marty Sanders, and that is straight up!

2012 Fight For Air American Lung Association Vertical Mile ChallengeThe American Lung Association sponsors the Assault on Carew Fight For Air Climb every February. Over 500 participate in various stair climbing events throughout the day, but only 20 athletes are invited to compete in the vertical mile. They get the pleasure of climbing up and down the tower over 10 times, while all the other events are once up only.

The concept of climbing a mile’s worth of stairs just isn’t real. The ancients tried to build a tower to heaven in Babel and now we all speak different languages as a result. The world’s tallest building, Dubai’s Burj Khalifa is enormous but it is just over one half a mile tall. To climb a mile’s worth of steps you will be climbing roughly twice the height of the Dubai Tower. Marty and his associates climb over 8000 steps in less than 2 hours. I made this short film to help illustrate the challenge and demonstrate Marty’s preparation.

martin sanders wins 2012 fight for air climb american lung association

Marty Wins 2012!

Marty has had a fascination for this extreme sporting event for the past four years. The first year he competed he placed third, and the last two years he placed second. For Marty the more important challenge is to raise money for the American Lung Association. As a youth he suffered from asthma and had very poor health. He received treatment and with hard work he has gotten to the excellent physical shape he is in today.

[Feb 19, 2012 update: Marty won this event, pictured at left beside Beth Brubacher, the female winner. Congratulations to both!]

In the last two years Marty has raised more for this event than any of the other athletes with the exception of one. This year he hopes to increase his sponsorship level and be number one in fundraising. You can help by telling everyone about this video as well as contributing at If you click on ‘Martin Sanders’ at the bottom of the page you’ll eventually be led to his contribution page.

[March 19, 2012 Update: Congratulations to Marty for coming in first in fundraising for the event. He won the event athletically and philanthropically as well. Job well done.]

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  1. February 9, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    Wow!!! Great job Chris!

  2. Annette Walker
    February 10, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Wow, incredible job! Nice voiceover, too, Chris 🙂

    Brought back some fond memories; I used to walk the steps up to Mt. Adams every Good Friday with my dad. He grew up in Mt. Adams and always took us to the butcher shop and bakery to pick out bird’s nest cookies and bunny rabbit cupcakes after we walked the steps and prayed the rosary with him. Ironically, he died of respiratory failure.

    I’m going to do what I can to make a donation to this cause. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Bill Cassarly
    February 11, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    I just passed out thinking about this! Nice Video Chris!

  4. February 12, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    I did a vertical mile – climbed up 1,237 steps, went down same steps, climbed up… etc. 6 times to top. Great experience. Great test of will and body. If anyone is interested in doing it in Thailand – let me know! (goupit dot com). Cheers… Vern

    • Martin Sanders
      February 14, 2012 at 8:35 am

      Vern, indeed a great experience! I’ve been on your page before. Love to join you sometime if I make it out your way.


      • March 25, 2012 at 3:23 am

        Yep, anytime – just let me know you’re in the area. Southern Thailand. Cheers man… CONGRATS! I saw you won this event!

  5. February 13, 2012 at 9:13 pm

    Great video! You did a fantastic job of putting it together. That really is an amazing thing he is doing.

    • Swainhart
      February 13, 2012 at 9:14 pm

      Thanks Leila, I appreciate it.

  6. February 13, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    Lovely Chris!

    My lungs hurt just watching this.


    • Swainhart
      February 13, 2012 at 9:16 pm

      Thanks for taking the time to watch it… it means a lot to me.

  7. February 15, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    Oh man I would love to do this run – it is for a good cause. Martin is an inspiration.

  8. March 10, 2012 at 4:35 pm

    I love stair climbing. Actually, it’s the results for my body that I like. I did 13 reps in our house this morning — that’s 13 x 3 stories. I’ve done 3 x 10 stories on a cruise ship, and had to coax my brain into completing the last flight — it’s wasn’t easy. But 10 x 49? Marty Sanders – you are amazing! (As are you, Christopher Roy — this is a great promotional video).

    • Martin Sanders
      March 13, 2012 at 8:10 am

      Thank You Andrew!

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