Nurse climbs Florida Hospital steps to prepare for international adventure

There are 15 floors of steps in the Ginsberg Tower at Florida Hospital’s main campus in Orlando.  

Lorellai Zaporteza has been using those steps as a training ground.  

“I really just take one step at a time,” she said.  

Zaporteza leaves Thursday for Japan where she will trek up Mt. Fuji an active volcano and the country’s tallest mountain.  

Flat Florida terrain presented Zaporteza with training challenge.  

The Winter Park Memorial Hospital emergency room nurse looked across town and found her solution.  

“I asked Florida Hospital South if I could train at their facility, which is basically their stairwell,” she said.

For the past few months Zaporteza has put on a 15 pound pack and a mask to simulate the thin mountain air and prepared for her trek by heading up those stairs.  

She’s come a long way since her first workouts.

“On the third flight of stairs I was already short of breath.  But now I'm doing 6600 steps.  That's amazing!”

Zaporteza will tell you that a trip around the world is an amazing adventure, but sometimes a personal journey can be one you take right at home if you’re willing to look around and find a way to make it happen.              

"Take the steps and don't look at the big picture because sometimes that's overwhelming,” she advised.  

"Take baby steps if that's what leads to your goal.”