Five months ago Chase asked me why I wanted to join and I said that I wanted to climb Mont Blanc easily and be that really fit person on the team who can take the time to enjoy and make the most of the expedition and not just 'survive' the journey. That's exactly what I was. Over the 5 months training leading up to my trip I was getting stronger and towards the end I realised I was significantly faster without exerting myself as much as I previously would have. I think that's what I most appreciate. Activities such as ice climbing aren’t something I've ever tried or could practice in Queensland however when the time came, I was capable and strong. It really surprised me but reinforced how prepared I was.
It wasn't until I was on the mountain and experienced the terrain for the first time (I'd never even walked in snow!) that I realised Chase knew exactly the movements I'd require to succeed. Every movement through snow, rock and ice felt familiar which gave me the confidence to know I was prepared for what I was doing. Confidence goes a long way in an adverse environment. Not all of my team summited the mountain but with the my training and knowledge I was able to summit and managed the same pace as the men. Being a 5ft female this was quite a feat and numerous guides asked if I was a climbing guide back home (I'm not).
I honestly can't recommend this specialised training enough! For the first time in my life I set a goal so high that failure meant a trip in a rescue helicopter but with the training and preparation, I knocked it out of the ball park! My advice to anyone interested is to just commit and set a really high goal. With time and training you will achieve it!
Besides, no one looks back and regrets that time they got really fit and transformed their life.
Alice Twomey - Mont Blanc, France. July 2015.