Veronica Stocker

Do you go by a nickname? V or Vero

Birthdate: 18 April 1969

What is your occupation? Spanish Interpreter

What/when was your first climb? September 2004, The US Bank Tower

How many climbs have you completed? Too many to count

Why/how did you start? My boyfriend at the time (now ex­boyfriend) encouraged me to sign up because I was always training on the stairclimb machine at the gym.

Do you have a favorite climb? Why? The US Bank because it was my first climb 

Least favorite climb? Why? The Stratosphere, because it always takes me a couple of weeks to recover from that race, I think it’s because the air is so dry in Las Vegas or something, I don’t know, but I am coughing & sneezing for days after that event.

Why do you climb? Fitness, the challenge, the feeling of accomplishment, the charity organizations.

Are there other sports you’re passionate about? Running

Did you have injuries or issues you needed to overcome to climb? No

How do you train? Stairs, hill repeats, Spin bike, weights, running

Do you have a special relationship with any of your step­siblings? I consider a few to be some of my closest friends.  They understand me.  My friends who are not athletes, cannot fuly relate to what I do or appreciate why I devote so much time, effort and money to this sport.  My step­siblings totally get it!

Who inspires you? Many people in my life, some who are no longer with me, inspire me. I also inspire myself, because my road has been a long one, I was not always an athlete, far from it, and only I know how much blood, sweat and tears it took to get to the point where I am today.  I am motivated by the idea of setting a good example for my son as well.

Do you have a good luck charm or any superstitions or pre­race rituals?  I do.  I have a certain necklace that I wear every race.  I always pray before a race and I remember all those who have inspired me and I also focus my thoughts on the people that I dedicate my runs to.

What's on your iPod during workouts/competitions? I never listen to music during a race or during my workouts/trainings.  The motivation has to come from within.  Music is an artificial motivator, one learns to depend on it.  I don’t want to depend on anything but my own willpower.  It’ s just a personal preference, it’s what works for me.

Do you have a website or blog for those interested in learning more about you? No.  I chronicle my races on my FB page.  That’s all.

If we had numbers on our jerseys, what would your number be? I have no idea.  I would take whatever was handed out to me.

What would you like to tell others about yourself and your experience with stair climbing that might inspire them in their lives? Don’t live vicariously through others.  If you have a passion or an interest, just go for it.  It’s great to admire other people for what they do or for what they have achieved, but be your own hero as well.