04. Kilimanjaro 2016: Training & Preparation Update

Jul 11, 2017 Off Comments in Kilimanjaro by

It’s been 3 months since Richard & Jason first set foot on their long road of training and preparation for the even bigger challenge of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for charity. It’s been a stimulating journey so far – with ups and downs, triumphs and setbacks, salads and Easter Eggs. But with only just over 4 months to go, are they feeling like April Fools? Or Spring Lambs – youthful, energetic and euphoric? I caught up with the guys to find out:

Richard Stone

Backing his mountaineering and survival skills, Richard rates his confidence as a very solid 8/10 – the same as it was in week 1. Why not a 10? The remaining 2 are in case confidence takes over and he loses the edge that’s required to enter ‘Rambo mode.’ Richard’s been working on his upper body strength in the gym, with a plan to move onto cardio training the closer we get to climb day. I’ve heard Richard doesn’t do push ups now…he pushes the earth down…

He’s found the hardest part of the training has been fitting it in between his busy work schedule… and hunting & gathering. Richard is still extremely excited about the prospect of stepping out of his large comfort zone at Kilimanjaro – on which he thrives – whilst conscious of what could go wrong and taking it all into consideration. No stone will be left unturned by Richard Stone!

Jason Lumley

Since the first update, in which he knew there was work to do, Jason has thrown himself into training and finds himself thinking about Kilimanjaro every day… apart from the weekend at the races…and Easter Weekend. Having said that, he’s still losing weight and actively looking to give himself the best chance of completing the climb. His confidence levels have reached the heights of 7.5/10. Besides regular visits to the gym he now does 5 mile walks every morning (taking around 80mins). By the end of April, Jason has promised to reach his goal of completing it in 1 hour (Keep an eye on Twitter for updates)!

Jason also recently trekked to the highest point in Nottinghamshire (Silverhill Wood) with Shaun Revill, SR Timber Trading Director, and Jason’s Personal Climbing Mentor/Sports Psychologist and Motivator. They completed some 20,000 steps in the process (oh yeah Jason has joined the Fitbit craze as well) which is around 10 miles – twice the daily targeted amount! Jason’s finding it easier to walk at the steep inclines at the gym and with the new daily training programme, he will gradually build on his leg strength and endurance further.

For further tips/advice Jason and Richard were recently both sent the same blog about a young couple who attempted Kilimanjaro on their honeymoon (risky start to married life, I know). Whether it was a good idea they read it is questionable as both Richard & Jason were staggered at how the ultra-fit couple who exercised (including rock climbing) regularly… struggled with the climb and, in fact, didn’t make the summit. This, as well as learning that toilet roll is currency on the mountain has further compounded the fact that it really is no easy feat…

For reference, and your own amusement, you can read said blog here.

What next?

As well as continuing their own personal training programmes, Richard and Jason have the following busy schedule penned in:

9th April – Trek in the Peak District
7th May – Attempt #2 at Mount Snowdon (when the weather should be better)
4th June – Attempt to climb Scafell Pike (England’s highest peak)
2nd July – Trek around the peak district including Grasmere to Langdale Pikes via Easedale Tarn then back to Grasmere from Langdale Valley… jelly legs!
6th August – Attempt to summit Gylderfach & Gylderfawr (don’t worry I can’t pronounce it either) which are part of the Gylder Range in Snowdonia

The big date is approaching and excitement/apprehension/pressure is building. As the guys learn more about what Kilimanjaro can throw at you, the bigger a task it becomes. What keeps their focus levels high? Knowing that all their efforts will be for the greater good of The British Heart Foundation – so please continue donating and help the guys reach their goal by clicking the ‘Sponsor Me’ link below or texting ‘GOSR89 £5’ (or however much you’d like to donate) to 70070.

A shot of the Silverhill Wood map – Nottinghamshire’s highest point.

A panoramic shot, mid-trek

Shaun Revill, SR Timber Trading Director and Jason’s personal climbing mentor, sports psychologist and motivator enjoys a selfie on the trek.