We finally got to the Dandenong Ranges and managed to do the 1000 steps/ Kokoda /memorial trail . And in a way… I wish we didn’t!! If this trail resembles Mt Kilimanjaro at all, I’m in deep trouble!
Doing this steep ascent in the wet and lush rainforest made me realize how unprepared and unfit I am. Panic set in as I climbed those steps and puffed and panted my way along. Honestly, I felt exhausted after maybe 10 minutes of walking. My breathing was bad, my head felt light and I felt utterly useless. Shame and sadness set in too at my state- and I really let my mind get the better of me.
As I stopped and collected myself, I felt close to tears. This was my idea. The Mountain climb, the practice walk, the whole shooting match. And here I am, puffed out and wanting to turn back. I really felt as If I couldn’t do it and maybe I should turn back. Instead of re-setting the pace, taking my time, I just felt like I’d let down the group and I wasn’t living up to expectation.
In reality, there was no shame to be had. It’s a touch walk. Especially on your first go and it really is a tough track. I needed to set the pace that suited me, take my time and relax. The others I went with had no expectations of me, they weren’t judging me, it was all in my mind. This was a big warning and message for Kili - walk to the beat of my own drum. Do what’s right for me. And my stubborn determination and pride will get me there in the end, just as it did on Saturday.
The walk is actually beautiful. I suggest on your first time, take it easy, read the signs along the way, look at the lovely flora and rainforest like landscape that surrounds you. Set your own pace, allow lots of time, and enjoy this beautiful region.
We reached the top in 25 mins-or possibly less, which was really quite quick. We then walked to One Tree Hill picnic ground and took a breather- We were all surprised at how quick It was. We were expecting an 8km track and quite a long day of walking. None of us were hungry really so after a few light snacks, we headed back down. We all opted for the hill instead of the steps.
The hill is a 3.1km path back down, again with some lovely views and beautiful Australian flora all around you. But again, it felt quite quick. We were done with the whole thing within an hour.
The best tip for training at 1000 steps is do it twice! Set your own pace, and listen to your body.
A lovely day out in this area and I’m glad I went – A wake up call and a good bit of exercise for a Saturday.
If you are interested in checking out the 1000 steps, read some more info here.
I will be taking on my biggest Adventure yet, Climbing Kilimanjaro for Alzheimer’s Australia NSW! I will Climb Kilimanjaro in honour of my Grandpa who passed away from Alzheimer’s in 2008. I was in Africa when I found out and I said at the time I would one day do this for him, in his memory! We are raising money for Alzheimer’s Australia NSW to raise awareness and the necessary funds for prevention of the disease that affects so many. Dementia is the third leading cause of death in Australia, after heart disease and stroke. We must prevent and find a cure as it’s not a normal part of aging, and does affect 100,000’s of Australians.
Help me reach my $10.000 target by donating to my online fundraising page:
KILI COUNTDOWN – 10 Days to go