Every person, situation and even country are different (everyone has their preference of brands and equipment).  The following are my training tips and advice on gear and philosophy based on my own experiences, years of research and of course trial and error.

I have never been by any means the fittest person on a mountain.  You've heard of the Tortoise and the Hare ?  I'm the tortoise!  slow and steady.

I was told theFORMULA for climbing a mountain was 5litres of water and 'pole pole' (which means slowly slowly in Swahili). BEST ADVICE I was ever given.

Climbing Kilimanjaro was a spur of the moment decision whilst I was in Tanzania.  I googled to find out about this mountain everyone was talking about and to see how much training was necessary to climb it.  It said minimum 3 months training. hmmm I had a week - oh what the heck I thought.  I also only had one pair of $20 cotton cargo pants, a $15 Best & Less hoody (which to this day is still my favourite) and my trusty hiking boots (thank God for them!),   I hired a sleeping bag, a tent, walking poles and a down jacket for summit day ($1 per day).  I spent another $20 on a beanie and gloves and one coolmax top.  That was it.  I had no idea what I was doing.  Sometimes it's better to have no idea - you don't over think everything.  Of course I hired a guide and turned up with a plastic bag containing a change of underwear, pyjamas and a toothbrush. (they did say to pack light lol..)  They asked where my gear was for the porter.  I handed them my plastic bag and they looked at me like I had 3 heads. hmmmm...    As we turned up to start the climb, I looked around and saw all these people from all over the world checking their gear.  Huge duffle bags and big jackets...  and I thought "Oh sh#t! - I could be in trouble. What am I doing?"    Once again - don't think just do it!  

I LEARNT A LOT ON THAT MOUNTAIN.  The following years I would learn a lot more from some amazing guides.  Some lessons however are learnt from trial and error and also from the mistakes of others (watch, listen and learn).

The fittest person does not always summit a mountain.  There is much more to climbing than fitness.  

No matter what happens, it's the journey, the friendships made and the lessons learnt along the way that change your life and make it all worth while.


These are some tips that might help.