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Kilimanjaro Fitness and Trainings
One question we get asked a lot is ‘how fit do I need to be to climb Kilimanjaro? Whilst a high level of fitness will make the climb a lot easier it by no means requires super human fitness. We often take people who have left their fifties well behind them and are not in peak physical condition. In fact, if you are carrying a few extra pounds this is a great way to lose weight! That being said, a solid Kilimanjaro training plan will allow you to better prepare for the climb and give you more opportunity to enjoy yourself when you’re on the mountain. Summit Kilimanjaro is a long slow grind but provided you have the determination to do just one more step even when you are tired we can help you get to the top.
If you are comfortable walking for 6-7 hours with an ascent of 1000m then you are certainly fit enough to succeed on Kilimanjaro. Similarly, if you can do a full hour spinning, a vigorous aerobics class or can jog at a decent pace for 45 minutes then there is no reason why you can’t summit Kilimanjaro.
“The bare facts about the climb are that you will probably be walking 6-7 hours per day with a rough ascent each day of 1000m.”
The best training by far to climb Kilimanjaro is to get your walking boots on and get lots of miles under your belt. Whether this is two to three hours walking locally or full days away on your nearest hills, you just need to clock up lots of hours on your feet as more than anything else it is just walking every day for 7 days that people find tiring. And the best cure for this is to have spent lots of hours just walking.
Hiking practice allows you to understand the stress your joints will be put under and how well you can deal with this. It also allows you to wear in your boots as this takes some time and can often be uncomfortable. Start with a comfortable distance that suits you and slowly try to work your way up to a 5-6-hour trek. If you can do this a few times, then you’ll be in good stead to climb Kilimanjaro.
Aerobic (or cardio) training will be a key factor in allowing you to climb Kilimanjaro. Aerobic literally means ‘requiring free oxygen’ and refers to the use of oxygen to adequately meet energy demands during exercise via aerobic metabolism.
Aerobic exercise builds up your cardiovascular system allowing you process limited oxygen in a more effective way. This is key for Kilimanjaro as it is a long distance exercise at altitude which will give the body less oxygen per breath. Aerobic exercise, unlike anaerobic exercise, requires oxygen for elongated periods of time. Examples of aerobic exercise would be lane swimming, long distance jogging, walking and cycling.
One crucial thing we tell our customers is don’t rush up the mountain! Trying to ascend too quickly is a huge mistake. Our porters can often be heard saying “Pole Pole”, meaning ‘Slow Slow’ in Swahili. Because of the altitude your body needs time to adjust – no matter your fitness levels! However, having a good cardiovascular system will help with this, but it won’t prevent it. Kilimanjaro is not a sprint, it’s a marathon! We recommend putting the slowest hiker to the front of the group. Depending on fitness, we recommend a 3-6 month Kilimanjaro training plan. Your hiking practice will help, but we also suggest running 6-12km three times a week. If you’re using a treadmill remember to set a slight incline.
Any Kilimanjaro training plan should also include strength training. Although not as important as your aerobic training, strengthening your upper body, core and, in particular, your legs, will greatly increase your chances of success. You’ll be on your legs at least 7 hours a day, you therefore need them to be strong enough to take the punishment.
Health & Safety on Mt. Kilimanjaro
Once you have made the decision to climb Kilimanjaro there are some things to consider about Health And Safety On Kilimanjaro ensuring you have a safe and successful Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. While Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, there are possible results that you may go up against some test including some success related issues in the midst of your trek. The purpose behind these medicinal issues is generally a result of the distinction in tallness and atmosphere.
This is the most broadly observed issue that most climbers go up against while Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Intense Mountain Sickness happens when you accomplish high heights, for example, Gilman’s Point, Stella Point or on the Summit of Kilimanjaro. Nevertheless, it will, in general, be managed quickly, by taking the individual suffering down to a lower height. Regardless, the disorder can be avoided by starting with a moderate pace toward the beginning of your trek, adding an extra day to adapt in accordance with the high height and by drinking 3-4 litres of water every day during your trek. You can also take altitude sickness medicine.
Hypothermia happens when the body’s temperature drops certainly, at any rate, it might be avoided with thought. Right clothing and equipment are essential to prevent Hypothermia. Protecting pieces of clothing from getting wet, either by sweat or from the rain. Layering dress is furthermore an astonishing idea. The treatment of hypothermia isn’t troublesome and someone suffering with it should be passed on to a protected zone at the most punctual chance. Following which all the wet clothing should be removed from the harmed person’s body before putting them inside three climbing beds for warmth, preferably with another person to raise the body temperature.
While you Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro you come in direct contact of SunUV light radiations, which causes genuine sunburn. So while trekking Mt. Kilimanjaro it is recommended to use +30 SPF sunscreen cream. Wearing a wide hat which covers your face and wearing UV protective shades with a sideboard are also recommended.
Hindered fitting boots or new boots that have not been worn in will hurt feet, achieving misery and disturbing. So it is basic to wear a functional consolidate of footwear. The toenails should be kept short so they don’t rub or catch on your socks. If you develop sore, quickly empty the boot and treat it with zinc oxide tape or an unaffected plaster. Give yourself the best chance of scaling Mt. Kilimanjaro. Avail the good quality Kilimanjaro Packing List, find the Best Time to Visit Mount Kilimanjaro for the long trek, observe the principles of climb high/sleep low, hydrate generously, heed your guide and ‘pole pole’ your way up the mountain.
For us “Dotcom Safaris” put our client’s safety first. That’s why more than anything, we want everyone enjoys their Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro trip and come home in good health.
Kilimanjaro Gear Packing List
During a day on Kilimanjaro the temperatures can easily range from the high 20’s (centigrade) right down at night to -15c. To cope with this huge range in temperature your clothing and kit strategy needs to be based around combining lots of thin layers that you build up and take off as the weather demands. Kilimanjaro National Park operates an absolutely strict limit of 15kg per porter for your main equipment bag, which includes your sleeping bag. This is more than sufficient for your needs on the mountain. Your bag will be weighed before you leave the hotel to start the climb and if it is overweight you will have to take items out and leave them at the hotel.
- Carrying equipment
- Water carriers
- Inner layers
- Outer layers
- Toiletries and medicine
- Practical items
- Additional items
Frequently Asked Questions
The following are the questions that we tend to get asked the most by our climbers. If you have further questions after reading this, do check out the Climb Mount Kilimanjaro website that accompanies the guide book, and of course the Kilimanjaro guide book itself, which has been deliberately designed to give as much detail and answer as many questions as possible.
Kilimanjaro is the only highest mountain which allows you to reach its summit Uhuru peak without any technical skills. Climbing Kilimanjaro is easy compared to other mountains, as it has easier terrains than steeps. However, you may need to use your hands while climbing the Barranco wall as it is the only steep wall in the entire Kilimanjaro zone. This is one of the important Kilimanjaro FAQs and has a proper answer. During wet season you may require hiking poles because the rocks are more slippery. Make sure you wear proper hiking boots or gaiters while you are climbing Kilimanjaro
The weather in Kilimanjaro is considered as wet season and dry season. Before knowing about Best Time To Climb Kilimanjaro”, the weathers and climates are very important to decide for Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. All the Kilimanjaro routes pass the ecological or climatic zones where the weather tends to change hourly due to the high-altitude condition and the trade winds. The wet season has more rainfall and dry season has lesser rainfall with more dry days. The main climatic zones are: Cultivation zone, Rainforest zone, Heath or moorland zone, Highland dessert zone and Artic zone. Each zone are unique in its own way and also have a distinct weather conditions all the way.
Best time to climb Kilimanjaro is a major Kilimanjaro Faq’s asked by most of the trekkers. Mount Kilimanjaro can be ascended year around and all the Kilimanjaro routes will support climbing Kilimanjaro round the year. As Kilimanjaro is near to equator the region experiences a very less extremes of winter and summer weather, rather it has wet and dry seasons. Hence, the Best Time To Climb Kilimanjaro is dry season which is warm. It is advised to avoid climbing Kilimanjaro during wet season for beginners. However, if you are with a professional climber and have all the safety precautions taken, then climbing Kilimanjaro in wet season would be really adventures. This also depends on your preference of Kilimanjaro Routes. You will need to choose best Kilimanjaro route and also choose a longer itinerary for better acclimatization.
You will be provided with tents, camping gear, food, utensils, and guidance. You should bring your own sleeping bag, water system, personal clothing, light duffle bag, and day pack. Hiking poles can be rented. If “What Do I Need To Climb Kilimanjaro?” is your question, the following list is for you. A packing list is provided to all climbers, along with our pre-departure packet:
The Kilimanjaro Food during your climb will help you to avoid from Kilimanjaro Altitude Sickness. The menu on Kilimanjaro is designed to ensure your food intake matches your level of exertion. It will provide you with a good balance of protein, carbohydrates, fruit and vegetables. When you are at altitude you could start to feel uneasy and your appetite may be suppressed, so the meals prepared at high altitude usually contain more carbohydrates and less protein to help you to digest your food. Your meals will be prepared by your cooks on Kilimanjaro and the food will be carried by your porters. You will be provided with Porridge, Toast, Pancakes, Egg, Smoked sausages, Tea, coffee and Hot chocolate. Sandwiches, Hard boiled eggs, Biscuits, Fruit juice. Soup, Pasts, Rice, Potatoes, Chicken, Beef, vegetables, Salad and Fresh fruits.
Mount Kilimanjaro has recorded the highest altitude level and one needs to be physically and mentally fit to summit the highest peak. You will need to have good acclimatization if you are climbing Kilimanjaro. You will need to sleep on the lower elevations and spend more time on higher elevations. Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro can be an achievement as well as more than the failure. The main health issue is related to respiratory problem. You will have Kilimanjaro Altitude Sickness, Acute Mountain sickness and also it may lead to High altitude pulmonary edema and also High altitude cerebral edema. However, these are self-diagnosable at the beginning. If you reach the severe condition you will need to descend.
The guides and porters are professionally trained to handle the emergency situations. They are equipped with first aid kits and also trained to provide first aid medicines. In case of any severe emergency the recuse team will be available to help you descend through a stretcher or in case of more sever emergency there will be a helicopter rescue team who will take you to the high altitude medical clinic and transfer to the best hospital in the city.
Yes, the drinking water is safe and there will be available enough water for all the climbers. We recommend you to carry 2-3 litres of water with you and add water purification tablets to it. This will help to purify the flowing water in the mountains and you will be safe to drink water in the mountains. It is suggested to drink more water to keep yourself hydrated and energised while Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.
While it comes to altitude sickness, then the question would be “How hard is it to climb Kilimanjaro?” The high-altitude level needs physical fitness and mental determination to climb Kilimanjaro instead of high-altitude medications. However, it is your preference to take high altitude medication while climbing Kilimanjaro, one of the tablet is Diamox which will help you control the high altitude sickness. It make you urinate more. So, we recommend to make yourself fit and train for Kilimanjaro and then attempt to the summit.
It is better to check with your doctor or centre of disease control before leaving for any recommendations. This one of the major Mount Kilimanjaro Facts you should take into considerations. However, while entering Tanzania you will need a yellow fever vaccination certificate and also malaria vaccination certificate. Apart from these other vaccinations are not compulsory. However, it is better to consult your doctor for Vaccinations for Kilimanjaro if you have asthma or any chronic health problems.
A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required for travelers over 1 year of age arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission and for travelers having transited more than 12 hours through the airport of a country with risk of yellow fever transmission. If you are traveling through Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, or Ethiopia en route to Tanzania, you will need a Yellow Fever Card upon arrival in Tanzania.
We highly recommend travel insurance! You have made a significant investment in your travel plans and, while in most cases everything will run smoothly, situations may arise on or before your trip that are outside of our control as your travel agent and for which we cannot be held responsible. Travel insurance may help make your trip more worry free by protecting your investment and yourself.
Travel insurance should cover such losses as:
Trip Cancellation and Interruption (due to sickness/death of you, family member, or travel companion)
Emergency Medical Transportation (minimum of $100,000)
Trip and Baggage Delay (including missed connections)
Lost or Stolen Baggage
Doctor and Hospital Payments
Travel Accident Insurance
Travel Insurance Tips:
To cover pre-existing conditions, you will need to buy travel insurance 7-21 days from your first trip deposit depending on the insurance company.
Cover the full time of your trip — door to door.
For a medical emergency or evacuation, contact insurance company before getting service if at all possible. They have preferred suppliers and may not cover non-preferred.
Travel insurance does not cover some activities without a surcharge — scuba diving, rock climbing, hot air ballooning.
Some companies offer boutique products like “cancel for work reasons,” “adventure activities”, or “cancel for any reason”.
Most policies are primary coverage and have no deductible. You will save receipts and then submit when you return.
Most U.S. medical policies do not cover travelers internationally, so double-check if you are relying on that.
Credit cards may cover some travel emergency expenses. Check coverage and exclusions, and if they are primary or secondary.
If you want specific coverage (pre-existing conditions, scuba), call the insurance company to confirm coverage and try to get it in writing.
Give someone at home a copy of your policy in case you need help contacting the insurance company.
If something is stolen, get a police report, and keep documentation for any medical services. These items will speed up any claims.
Pregnancy is not covered by most travel insurance companies.