Produce Haul and New Skyscraper

Now that I’m finished telling my tales about Las Vegas, Nevada and Seattle, Washington, it’s time to play a little catch-up on what’s been going on since I got back.  I have two topics today – one involving food, and one involving exercise.

Let’s start with food, shall we?

1) Produce Haul.  Knowing that I’d be gone for 6 days, I had carefully orchestrated my eating and produce purchasing before my trip so that I didn’t leave behind much produce to potentially go bad.  It worked – when I left for Las Vegas, the only produce in my kitchen was 2 lemons and 1/2 a head of garlic.

That meant that a big shopping trip awaited upon my return!  I arrived home on Tuesday night.  I thought about my lack of fruits of veggies as I was driving in from Vegas, and decided to stop at Whole Foods and put together my dinner from their salad bar.  I built a tasty dinner, but because I was so exhausted from my nearly 12-hour travel day, I decided that the big shopping trip could wait until the next day.  I just wanted to get my salad and go, which is exactly what I did, with the exception of grabbing a couple apples for breakfast the next day with my oatmeal.

Then, on Wednesday, I had invited a friend over for dinner, so after the gym, I swung by Whole Foods again.  But because I hadn’t made a list of what I wanted and needed (something I always like to have while shopping, to curb temptation and impulse purchases), and because I kinda hungry (I don’t like shopping while hungry, because my stomach tends to encourage me to buy things that I wouldn’t otherwise buy), I decided to pick up the few things I needed for dinner, and that’s it.  You’ll see what I made, by the way, in an upcoming blog.

So it wasn’t until Thursday that I went to Whole Foods, for the third time in three days, with a list in hand and after eating lunch.  Here’s the produce bounty that I brought back home:

What do we have?  Here’s the inventory, going (generally speaking) from left to right, top to bottom:

Bananas, 4 zucchini, blueberries, mushrooms, prepackaged kale salad, apples, a 2-pound bag of baby carrots, cherries, 3 black plums, 1 tomato, 1 cucumber, celery, 3 pluots (which, like apriums, are a plum/apricot hybrid), a yam, a green pepper, strawberries, 3 peaches, 1 elusive purple bell pepper, green grapes, a red onion, a container of sprouted black-eyed peas, and asparagus.

That’s a lot of produce!

2) New Skyscraper.  Yesterday at the gym, I completed 40 minutes lifting weights, and then climbed on the StairMaster for the first time in about a month.  In case you aren’t familiar, since I’m not a fan, I have a little motivational trick to get me through StairMaster workouts: I find a skyscraper equivalent to how my flights I climb, and add it to my collection of conquered skyscrapers around the world.

Yesterday, I went 15 minutes on the StairMaster, burned 280 calories, and was pooped.  I ended up climbing 83 floors!  For today’s skyscraper, we head back to the architecturally prominent city of Chicago, Illinois, which is known for its buildings, but has only made my skyscraper list once before.

The third-tallest building in Chicago has exactly 83 floors, and it’s called the Aon Center.  I looked at a bunch of pictures before deciding on this daunting shot from the ground up:

That’s TALL!  I climbed that!

Some Aon Center fun facts:  It was completed in 1973 as the Standard Oil Building, and for a short period, was the tallest building in the city, earning it the nickname “Big Stan.”  It was also completely covered in marble (except the windows), making it the world’s largest marble-clad building, but that proved problematic, because just a year later, one of the marble slabs fell off the building and crashed through the roof of the building next door.  Oops!  Crews then installed metal straps to hold the rest of the marble in place, and eventually, in the early 1990s, the owners spent an estimated $80 million replacing all the marble with granite, a harder and stronger stone.

Oh, and does anyone want to guess how many elevators are needed to service an 83-story building?  Anyone?  Anyone?  Bueller?  The answer is the end of this post.

Time to add Aon Center to my skyscraper collection!

  • Aon Center, Chicago, IL (83 floors, climbed 8/5/11)
  • CITIC Plaza, Guangzhou, China (80 floors, climbed 12/1/10)
  • JPMorgan Chase Tower, Houston, TX (75 floors, climbed 3/9/11)
  • Renaissance Center, Detroit, MI (73 floors, climbed 6/19/11)
  • The Sail @ Marina Bay, Singapore (70 floors, cilmbed 11/9/10)
  • Yokohama Landmark Tower, Yokohama, Japan (70 floors, climbed 4/11/11)
  • 900 North Michigan, Chicago, IL (66 floors, climbed 4/1/11)
  • Vista Tower, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (62 floors, climbed 7/2/11)
  • 1000 de la Gauchetiere, Montreal, Canada (51 floors, climbed 11/3/10)
  • Ernst & Young Bldg, Los Angeles, CA (41 floors, climbed 10/3/10)
  • City Place I, Hartford, CT (38 floors, climbed 5/11/11)
  • Ocean Towers, South Padre Island, TX (31 floors, climbed 1/20/11)

Whoa! I set a new personal record!  That was a complete surprise – guess I haven’t been paying attention to my StairMaster accomplishments!

Keep it up, David!

PS. The Aon Center has 50 elevators.  Were you right?  Oh, and be sure to come back for tomorrow’s post, which is going to be all about my evening at… a strip club!

5 Responses to Produce Haul and New Skyscraper

  1. Purple bell pepper?! You’re at it again, and I’m probably more excited about this vegetable than any in the past because bell peppers are my favorite! I. want. a. purple. bell. pepper!!!!!!!!!

    And wow…I’d like to climb a skyscraper too. Congrats on beating your record! Keep it up David!

  2. Ang says:

    Yeah on Personal Best for Stairmaster..Purple Bell Pepper? Never seen one of those before.

    Since I can’t go to Slimmons I put in Sit Tight and did that for my workout..Workout perfect because my toes were swelled up like little sausages..

    Love the produce Picture..gets me motivated for my own grocery shopping..

  3. Heidi says:

    I’ve actually participated in a few climbing events around Chicago including two climbs up the 83 flights of the Aon Building and three climbs up the 102 stories of the Sears Tower. I can’t imagine finding THAT sort of fitness again.. but as I said to myself the first time I climbed the Sears Tower: I can climb ANY building… 5 flights at a time. AND, I know I can lose these last 40 pounds… one pound at a time. Always proud of you… Keep it up, David!!

  4. Pat says:

    Bring on the Strip Club story— (and there better be pics!)

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