LOOK UP LOOK FORWARD
Post race update!
Wow where do I begin. I guess I'll start with the first thing on my mind. I am so thankful and grateful for EVERYONE that has supported The Human Connection Project and myself over the last 8 weeks on this road to Everesting for Mental Health!
On Saturday 03rd October 2020, I pushed myself to the edge of physical and mental exhaustion, climbing that trail repeatedly was the single most hardest challenge I have put myself through. Up-down-up-down. Setting a good pace at the start then quickly realising how much I underestimated the task at hand. I battled the heat, stomach cramps then eventually throwing up, which resulted in muscle cramps as the body was trying to catch up all the fuel I lost.
I've raced 24 hour obstacle races, ran a 5km loop in my neighbourhood for 24 hours straight clocking 204km's. But this takes the cake!
Trixfi.com have been following our journey towards Everesting and the motivations behind this challenge. Part 1 launches October 9th with a 3 year subscription for the price of one.
I'm very pleased to say we hit our fundraising target!
Everesting for Mental Health
03rd October 2020
Scorpion Trail, Mt Coo-tha
Together, let's raise awareness and money to help people stay connected while disconnected through Covid-19 and beyond.
On the 3rd October 2020, I'll be running a hill repeatedly in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia to climb an elevation equivalent of Mt Everest being 8,848 metres, in the hope I can raise awareness and the same value in donations of $8,848 to support people throughout Australia having a difficult time coping with the pressures of our new way of life.
8,848m - $8,848
Together we can make it happen!
Why am I doing this?
Apart from the fact I love to challenge myself physically and mentally beyond my beliefs, Vanessa and I know first hand what impacts on life ill mental health has on an individual and the people around them.
Vanessa's Dad and my Mum have suffered moderate to severe mental health issues all of their adult life. As a child growing up in this environment it was seen as the 'norm' and we didn't know any different.
We saw a dependancy and addiction to prescription medication, with a poor diet and no exercise and little self worth. Sure there were moments of love, affection and laughter in the family but this was often overshadowed with sadness, anger, lack of control and depression. We didn't know any different.
In 2015, Vanessa's mum was diagnosed with early onset dementia at the age of 56 and at this time underlying mental health issues were uncovered. She hid her sadness from us, shielded us from what was going on so as not to bother us, which we can't help but feel responsible for. If only we could helped earlier, would her life be any different? Vanessa and I question every day what we could of done to change or alter the course of these events.
In light of the above, this is a small physical and mental challenge I'll undertake compared to the many challenges people in the community are facing right now. From losing their small business and life savings that went with it, to not being able to see loved ones who may be in different states or aged care. Unemployment, domestic violence and suicide numbers are some of the worst statistics we will see in our lifetime.
I've chosen the Human Connection Project to partner with on this 8 week journey, a small organisation with big dreams of becoming Australia's largest proactive mental health and human connection lead organisation.
'The Human Connection Project is a not-for-profit social enterprise working to become Australia's largest proactive mental health and human connection lead organisation.
Their vision is to help and empower people to become more resilient and empathetic individuals with stronger connections to their community.
The act of connecting as human beings has diminished over the years due to the influx of incredibly busy lifestyles and greater time constraints, the false sense of connection we get from social media, and the rapid and constant change in the way we communicate with each other.
From this human disconnection, we have seen an incredibly alarming increase in mental illness, in particular, the issue of suicide. Social and human connection is fundamental, we not only need it to survive, we need it to thrive in life.'
Event Shirts Available on site 03rd October
The Human Connection Project in partnership with Kustomize it are printing shirts for event day, Let me know if you would like to grab one if you are not at the event and we can discuss postage. Here's me being directed by Vanessa to try and look cool modelling one fresh off the press!
$20 of every shirt sold goes to the charity towards our $8,848 target!
The link above is donating via Paypal through facebook. By donating here it helps us keep track of the running tally.
If you do not use facebook, you can donate direct with the charity here. or go to https://www.connection.org.au/support-us Please let the charity know by emailing email@example.com of your donation so we can track it against this fundraiser, thank you!
What is Everesting
For what's become a global phenomenon, the team at EVERESTING put it simply:
“FIENDISHLY SIMPLE, YET BRUTALLY HARD. EVERESTING IS THE MOST DIFFICULT CLIMBING CHALLENGE IN THE WORLD.”
The concept of Everesting is fiendishly simple: Pick any hill, anywhere in the world and complete repeats of it in a single activity until you climb 8,848m – the equivalent height of Mt Everest. Complete the challenge on a bike, on foot, or online, and you’ll find your name in the Hall of Fame, alongside the best climbers in the world.
8 WEEK TRAINING JOURNEY
Week one - 10th to 16th August
Hours: 13 hours
Building - 3 week block
Here we go! 1st week of focused training for Mt Everest. I'm really no stranger to training and juggling other life responsibilities. However adding in the journaling and content producing to raise awareness and donations for The Human Connection Project made me appreciate the need for rest!
Training get's done, but has to fit in with my 9-5 job at Konica Minolta, running coaching Fit Tribe Oz athletes, run the run club at FitazFK (pun intended) but above all of that my family responsibilities like school and kindy pick up/drop off, Maya's netball, keeping house, general family and some 'us' time with Vanessa, which we definitely don't get enough of!
What a week, on to the next one to do it all again!
Week two - 17th to 23rd August
Hours: 14:30 hours
Building - 3 week block
Alright we made it through week 2! Well I didn't have too many doubts. However it was touch and go getting a few workouts and runs in this week as Emily our 4 year is creating a habit of crawling into our bed throughout the night and using my face to rest her feet! Needless to say sleep has been difficult to find most nights!
The sun is waking earlier so it's a little easier to get pre dawn sessions in, something I favour as it doesn't impact on family or work time. The lead up to this event is really about time on feet and getting stronger climbing hills. On my easy runs around home I'm looking for streets on an incline and the strength work in the gym isn't too dissimilar to what i'm used to, although I am focusing more on unilateral (single leg) strengthening exercises like single leg deadlifts and squats.
This is week 2 of a three week building block, increasing distance and elevation each week.
I had some great conversations with supporters of this journey with Ralph from Trixfi, Phill from Beartrap and Nik from Edge, we have some ideas for event day to make it a little more interesting, until then. Stay tuned!
Week three - 24th to 30th August
Hours: 16 hours
Building - 3 week block
Hello week 3, I knew you were going to go hard on me and that you did. What a big week! I look back on the week just gone and still try and understand how I can fit it all in.
Work has more pressure now that business has improved in confidence, It's gradually warming up with Spring knocking on our door. I was even fortunate enough to get a swooping by a neighborhood butcher bird this week!
I had to get a solid run in on Sunday to build on the last two week's, with one of Emily's friends having a birthday party at 9am, Sunday morning so a 3am start on the trails in Mt-Cootha. It's a hard decision to make at the time, but runs like this condition the body and mind to work under fatigue for endurance racing, so it's worth getting in.
Maya is joining me on some more runs lately with the distance gradually increasing. She is definitely getting faster on her bike, I try to tie some of my sessions in with the girls throughout the week to get some time with them and get the workout done at the same time. Sometimes it works, other times it's just a lot of laughter!
Filming has started with Trixfi and I'm excited to see how all this unfolds over the coming weeks. Thanks for following, on to week 4!
Week four - 31st August to 06th September
So we are into week 4 in preparation of climbing Mt Everest ⛰. It was a week to reset and ‘lay off’ the intensity a little before another couple weeks of building. Speed work, hill work and strength in the gym all stil play a part however I deload slightly to realign the body and mind. It’s still a high speed hustle though compared to most training weeks as we are very specific and targeted towards climbing the tallest mountain in the world.
I caught up with the team at K2 Base Camp, an adventure store based in Fortitude Valley in Brisbane who offered great advice and fitting of shoes specific to the purpose of utra distance run events with constant elevation change. We settled on the La Sportiva Jackal shoe which will get a solid test next weekend.
This quote resonated with me well this week
’Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle’ Abraham Lincoln
Stepping into the darkness for week 5 and 6 they are big weeks ahead! I’ll see you on the other side!
Week five - 07th to 13th September
Building - 2 week block
Week 5! Still in one piece. Coming into week 5 I new was going to be a physical and mental battle. It was programmed to be my biggest week of training in leading up to this event. It actually turned out to be my biggest week of training in my history of running...period!
Ok so if I was an elite athlete doing this full time this type of load would be sustainable. But I'm a family man, have a full time job and all responsibilities that come with being me day to day, so this is seasonal training specific this event. Next week will be similar, then I'm definitely looking forward to pulling it back before the big dance.
In three weeks we are conquering Everest!!!
'It isn't the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it's the pebble in your shoe'
Week six - 14th to 20th September
Building - 2 week block
At this stage of training there’s excitement, relief and a few nerves 😁. Undoubtably the last 6 weeks I put the biggest load and pressure on myself to prep for any event. Some days I felt invincible and other times near breaking point. This last week alone, pushing through muscle pain and fatigue in almost every session.
Stoked to say to I’ve come out of the woods strong and ready to climb Everest! ⛰ It’s now time to taper, I’m still training but will be focusing on rest, recovery, immunity and getting this body fresh to climb.l
Two weeks and it’s game on!!! Thank you to everyone who has encouraged and supported me on this journey.
Please help us get to $8,848 for the legends at @connectionprojectau ‘empowering people to become more resilient and empathetic individuals’
Week seven - 21th to 27th September
A very welcomed taper week! If only all training weeks were de loaded like this 😊
’hold the vision - trust the process’
I caught up with my first ever running coach this week, we filmed the catch up on the Trixfi docoumentary series. Chris Weier 'Weiery' as we know him by, keeps his methodologies to training and racing very simple.
But he came out with this cracker for me when I asked him what is one piece of advice you can give me between now and the event: ‘Don’t do anything stupid between now and Saturday’ 😂
I couldn't help but laugh at this statement, then look around for bubblewrap and a padded room to keep me in one piece! The sleep ins are welcomed, no 2am alarms this week and many more hours soaking up family time on the weekend and weeknights.
Bring on Everest! Next weekend we are EVERESTING in Brisbane! 8,848m 👍
Week eight - 28th September to 04th October
Hours: 24 hours
Weight: Pre race 76.2kg post race 71.8kg
Boy oh boy what a feeling! There’s much of the day I don’t remember. But there’s one thing I do: the overwhelming support and the connections I’ve made on this journey 🙏
As Matt Boyce would say... HOW GOODS LIVING!