aconcagua1bI often used to think that it would be “good to have had an adventure…. sometime…..in the past!”  Well, that desire has caught up with me because in just over 6 weeks I am off to climb Aconcagua, the highest mountain in the world outside the Himalayas at just under 7000 metres high!  I am no mountaineer – I have climbed Kilimanjaro, so I have been to altitude, but this 23 day expedition is all together at another level.  I fly out to Argentina on the 28th December – full of Christmas pud and Christmas cheer – too face what will potentially be the toughest 3 weeks of my life!

Why?? I hear you ask! Mmm good question – I guess for a mixture of reasons.  Firstly the fact that “it is there!” Isn’t that what all famous explorers say 🙂  The reality, however, is because I believe that life is too short not to be the best you want to be #btbywtb.  To be your best you need to keep developing and in order to develop and grow I believe you have to push yourself out of your comfort zone! I also recognise that if I am going to encourage other people to #btbywtb, then I need to walk the talk and live my life in a way that is congruent with what I espouse.

As I sit here in the warmth, at my desk writing this blog, I have a number of conflicting emotions – writing and talking about it makes it very real, checking the calendar to see how many weeks away just scared the bejesus out of me. I am scared, apprehensive, excited and nervous all in equal measure – doing something you have never done before, having no experience on which to judge whether I am prepared or not prepared is the toughest thing to get my head around!  There are so many unknowns and dealing with the uncertainty is an interesting daily challenge.

I don’t know who I am trekking with (some chap called Luke apparently), who our guide is, whether I am fit enough, strong enough or mentally tough enough! I don’t know how I will cope with the altitude, whether I will be warm enough, how I will sleep (in a tent for nearly 3 weeks), how edible the food will be or how I will cope with picking up my own poo and carrying it down the mountain!  In short there is much that I don’t know and in all honesty, can’t do much about right now!  What I do know is that it will be an incredible experience regardless of how it turns out, I will be a bigger (well actually smaller through weight loss), fitter, stronger, more resilient, confident and capable person as a result. Woo hoo – go Rich!! 🙂

I thought I would write this weekly blog as I prepare and take on the climb, bringing to life my experiences and sharing in the ups and downs!

Feel a bit sick now 🙁 – best not think about it!

Right onwards and upwards – time to get out in the rain for a short training walk. I am now carrying over 22kg up and rf-kit-cornerdown Holcombe Hill – hopefully that will be about 8kg more than I will actually need to carry.  This week is about getting more miles in carrying weight, as well as keeping up with the strength exercises for legs, neck and core!