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where do I start? A bit in that I've finally signed up for this having thought about it for years. I am not the fittest of people, in fact, I'd go as far to say I'm pretty unfit although I have been seeing a personal trainer once a week since February and she is pleased with my progress.
Its next May, so I have a bit of time but a lot of work to do. I'm probably about 2 - 2 1/2 stone overweight so that needs to go and I need to build on my existing routine (normally 1 hour pw with personal trainer and 2 x 45 mins sessions during the week).
Have to get a medical form signed by GP first and am hoping that there won't be any problems. Have to tick yes to a few of the things on the list but most of them were 10+ years ago and have done two treks since then. Did China 6 years ago and Jordan last year but they are apparently just a 'walk in the park' compared to MP. Only thing to change since last trek is that I now have diabetes and I'm hoping this won't be an issue. Only type 2 so keeping fingers crossed that they will let me go.
So, any advice from experienced trekkers? Have I aimed too high?
Are you doing the one where someone carries your pack for you or where you carry your own stuff ?
Either way the best way to prepare is walking walking walking - as much as you can.
First, get some very comfortable hiking boots. Go to an outdoor store ad take advantage of the people who work there and get them to advise and fit you. Nothing is more important than good boots. Nothing.
Next, where your boots in each walk - then by next may, they will be your best friend and comfy as slippers
Then, set a schedule for waking - say, one mile two times in week one, one mile three times in week two, two miles three times a week in week three, two miles twice in week four and one 4 mile hike, etc - gradually and sensible increase until you are walking 20 miles once a week with two smaller walks
You don't need to run to prepare - likely this will just harm you if you jump into running - walking briskly can increase your heart rate and do you just as much good as long as you keep up the pace - add in some hills and start carrying a backpack with a couple of house bricks and you are rocking along quite nicely
onehand I'm hoping diabetes won't be a problem. I'm seeing my diabetic doctor next week (he is on holiday at the moment) and am keeping fingers crossed he will sign me off as ok. As its 'only' type 2 at this point I'm quite hopeful. I can understand why they wouldn't let type 1 diabetics go.
yay to the S & D. That will help me get to my goal weight
Sittingbull OMG, where is worse than MP? I thought that was up there as being the hardest (maybe Killy?)
I'm guessing if its like Jordan where we camped, we carried our own daypacks with us with our personal items, water, snacks etc and our luggage was transported on a truck. I've a really good pack I bought just before Jordan with a camel pack which I'll use again.
Am torn ref boots. I have some (old faithful) ones that I've had years. They've climbed Ayers Rock, been on safari in Kenya, trekked the Great Wall and Jordan last year. They are therefore very worn in but as they are 20 years old now I'm guessing it would be sensible to get some new ones pretty soon and break those in just in case.
Ref training, at the moment I'm trying to get to the gym 3 times a week (just back from 30 mins on treadmill and 45 mins zumba) and see my PT at least 1 hour a week so she will give me a lot of guidance. Nearer the time I'll start walking to the gym wearing my boots and with gym back in rucksack just to get used to it. A bit difficult at the moment to do more than x 3 pw with the kids but will up it seriously after Christmas.
As you've done MP I'd really value your opinion on whether I need walking poles? In Jordan some had and some didn't but I remember the tour guide saying if you have them you need to train with them well in advance.
I'm just a bit worried I think about how my health (diabetes) will affect me. It seems likely that I had diabetes when I did Jordan last year but just didn't know it. I think about all the high glucose drinks and snacks I had then which can't have done me much good. Will need to find what energy drinks/snack I can take that are low sugar!
I've done MP - it was lovely! In the days before you had to be on an organised trip, so just me and DH.
I'd have thought that doing some long walks would be better preparation than short bursts at the gym, although the gym will obviously help with overall fitness. Long as in time taken, as you'll want to be able to plod happily all day; the distance you cover will increase the closer you get to the trek.
The advantage of a walk, rather than the gym, is that you can take the kids - great family weekend outings. Don't expect to get as far as you would without them, but it will make your trek seem all the easier when you don't have to worry about giving them snacks, climbing trees, looking at creepy crawlies, finding suitable toilet places, finding sticks, providing dry clothes etc etc etc.
We were in Peru for a fortnight; delicious food, and no stomach upsets. (Recommend going into the rainforest if you have a chance; best bit of a holiday ever.)
If your boots are 20 years old they're probably quite heavy, so you could gain from having newer, lighter ones.
I've never used poles, but know lots of people love them. Maybe borrow some, and see what you think.
woo hoo! GP has signed for off as being 'fit' enought to do it. He wants to keep a check on my diabetes and do my blood tests about a month before I go but said that if I carry on with my exercise and healthy eating then I may even be able to reduce my medication before I go. I am so relieved as part of me thought he might say I wasn't up to it.
Did a 5k run/fast walk yesterday down a woody/hilly track and suffering a bit today