Kilimanjaro Training Tips

Mount Kilimanjaro stands high at 5,895 meters, making it the highest mountain in Africa and the first free-standing mountain in the world. The climb of the Kilimanjaro should not be taken too lightly. The highest point of the crater of Kibo is well above the upper tops of the European Alps and the oxygen pressure is very low.

To reach Kilimanjaro summit, your body must satisfactorily acclimatize itself. It is very important to be physically prepared. Another important part of the preparation is having the proper equipment before you start the climb. See the packing list below for details.

Trekking, Hiking or Climbing?

However these three terms are repeatedly used interchangeably, there have considerable differences in their meaning.

Hiking refers to the easiest type of leisure “walking” activities and implies that a hiker is walking by specially designated and adapted trails or human-made roads.

Trekking also refers to the process of walking, yet this concept implies that a “trekker” walks a longer distance than a hiker and exerts himself physically above the ordinary level. Another noticeable difference is that trekking expeditions are carried out within the areas with no transportation.

The idea of “mountain climbing”, on the other hand, is fundamentally different from “hiking” or “trekking”. There are two distinguishing features of mountain climbing. Firstly, it means using special equipment (clothes and gear), which is not usually used for hiking or trekking expeditions. Secondly, the purpose of a climbing expedition is reaching the top of a mountain, while hiking and trekking may be practiced in other wilderness areas.

Thus, semantically Kilimanjaro expeditions are both climbing and trekking. One-day Kilimanjaro adventures to the lower camps may be classified as “hikes”.

Physical Preparations

It is vital that your body is accurately prepared for the physical challenge of the Kilimanjaro. The well prepared you are, the higher the success rate to conquer the highest point of Africa. Sensible preparation will make a significant contribution to your own confidence and mental strength.

How Will You Get Fit?

The type of condition is a lot of necessary than the degree of fitness. Mount Kilimanjaro could be a stroll, therefore the best preparation you’ll have is walking, ideally below replicated conditions. Though to some extent running/jogging help. Your muscles might be still not ready for seven days of quiet however significant strenuous walking. I advise that you just can often walk long distances. Ignore the elevator and take the staircases.

Go walk, additionally to regular fitness so as to train your muscles to develop endurance.  Choose regular walks with altitude; walking up and down at completely different ascent levels. Take a daypack and definitely carry three liters of water with you. This method will give you an illusion of climbing Mt.Kilimanjaro.

If the weather does not allow you to take walks, you can also simulate the walk on the incline level of a gym’s treadmill.

If you can walk 80 kilometers (50 miles) in one week, you have done the Machame Route. Work your body for extra resistant muscles, because the mountain will test your endurance capacity.

In a matter of eight weeks in the gym and the several hikes, you can be fit enough for the Kilimanjaro trek. Break from all sports activities in the week before the Kilimanjaro climb so your body can come to a resting point and will be fully equipped for the real work.

Medical Check-up

Before starting a physical training program, it’s always wise to get the approval of a doctor (especially if you are over 45 years old). Chances are that you will make him happy with your plans.

Build up More Resistance

A physical exercise program of eight weeks consisting of regular exercises will help you build more resistance, with free weights or with the equipment at the gym. Such exercises can be personalized to your age, current fitness and strength. Ask your instructors at the gym how to work on your resistance before climbing the Kilimanjaro.

Mental Preparations

Everybody is able to reach the summit of the Kilimanjaro. Remember, many have done so before you. Think about this when you prepare yourself for the expedition. Always think positively and you WILL enjoy the climb!

Talk about your forthcoming adventure with others, so as to actually make a mental commitment to get to the top of Kilimanjaro and Africa. Do it for an exceptional person. Carry a photo with you that you can check out at night during the climb. Prepare for Climb.

Packing List

Don’t forget that you will be on a mountain for 5 or more days and nights. Take enough comfortable clothing and especially warm socks. Because of possible rainfall, as well as various streams on the route, it is very suitable to have dry clothes in your daypack, cloak them in plastic, so they surely will remain dry.

Proper clothing includes thermal underwear (don’t wear cotton directly to the skin because it absorbs your sweat and therefore can reduce your body temperature), gloves (preferably mittens), a cap and rainwear. Clothing should be with the windproof outer mantles that allow breath. Avoid constricted clothing. A balaclava (ski mask) is essential because it will protect your face against the cold, wind, sun and snow. Other clothing such as shorts, jerseys, and T-shirts are highly recommended, especially while walking on the lower slopes as daily temperatures are still high.

It might sound a bit peculiar, but walking with trekking poles is by many people known as a very agreeable experience during the climb. Indeed, it’s power walking. With two poles you can better set off when ascending and lean on them when descending.

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