08. Kilimanjaro countdown: 12 weeks!

Jul 11, 2017 Off Comments in Kilimanjaro by

It’s been nearly 6 months since Rich and Jason took on the Kilimanjaro challenge and began planning how to tackle the beast. Although that seems like a distant memory now, there are only 3 months to go until they’re standing looking up, open mouthed and sweaty in the blazing African heat. Is it approaching too quickly? Or is all going to plan?

Their first real ‘let’s see where we’re at’ test was an attempt up Mount Snowdon back in February – which ended in disappointment as summiting wasn’t possible due to the unpredictable Welsh weather. It was a good wakeup call however as Jason’s legs were in trouble after 20 minutes into the 6 hour round trek – but to his credit, he ploughed through!

Almost four months have passed since then, so progress must have been made, right?

Well I’m pleased to report there has indeed been progress, and plenty of it. Earlier in May, Rich & Jason attempted Snowdon again – this time with the added pressure of trekking with SR Timber Trading Director and mentor, Shaun Revill, as well as senior personnel from SR Timber’s key partners and suppliers. Whether it was nervous energy, adrenaline, ego or pure determination, they all reached the summit! It was a euphoric moment and certainly a climb in the right direction. Their hard work appears to be paying dividends.

With the pressure(and weather) now heating up – I felt it was about time we had a preparation update as they enter the final straight of training – here’s what the guys had to say:

Training has been going well and it’s getting continually easier to fit it into my daily routine. My strength has increased well, so going into the final leg of training I’ll be focussing on cardio work, increasing stamina and getting down to my goal weight – which I’m only a couple of pounds away from! The main concern I still have is altitude sickness as there is only so much you can do before it’s down to nature and your body to not let you down… I do not want to travel all that way to not make the summit! And of course I am still petrified of Jason’s snoring…

The support we’re receiving from our customers, suppliers, friends, family etc. has been amazing and we’ve raised £1,600 (31% of our target) already for British Heart Foundation which is very pleasing!

I’ve actually surprised myself with the progress I’ve made. Considering the pain Snowdon inflicted on me in February, I actually found it quite easy second time round following the work I’ve done in between. I don’t want to get carried away though as Kilimanjaro is leagues above – but I’ll climb that mountain when I come to it. After a surge of weight loss initially, it’s slowed down of late as I’ve been preparing for a holiday, but once that’s out of the way, and my batteries are recharged, my focus will be back on losing the final 2 stone to achieve my target weight…and it will be done.

Resulting from my gym work, I’ve noticed an improvement in my breathing and lung capacity. Comparing again to Snowdon in February, where even tying my shoelaces put me into oxygen debt, I summited and descended with relative ease this time! Similar to Richard, my main concern is still the altitude sickness, closely followed by the wild animals we may or may not come across… it’s the fear of the unknown I guess, and I’m not sure reading the books and watching the nature programmes are helping!

As Richard rightly pointed out, donations have been increasing which is great, as the whole point of this challenge is to raise as much money for The British Heart Foundation as possible.

To donate, click the Sponsor Me link below or text GOSR89 £5 (or however much you want to donate) to 70070.

Rich (green coat), Jason (beacon-esque hat) with their moral supporters at the top of Mount Snowdon – there’s no better feeling than progression & hard work paying off! [click on image to enlarge]