Michelle Vesterby reaches the top

For 12 days Michelle Vesterby left her bike and swim suit behind to climb Kilimanjaro for charity. In her first blog for TriathlonWorld.com we learn how it has changed her life.

| February 1, 2018 | PERSONALITY

No, that\'s not Michelle at the top of a mountain at home in Denmark - she\'s at the top of the Africa\'s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro!

No, that's not Michelle at the top of a mountain at home in Denmark - she's at the top of the Africa's highest mountain, Kilimanjaro!

Right now I am at at Club La Santa – my absolute favorite training spot. However, it has only been a week since I reached the top of Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa. A very different “off season” compared to other years – so why this adventure?

For me, triathlon isn’t only about training the most – it’s also about challenging yourself – finding inspiration and motivation in other things than just the sport.

During the last six years, I’ve been ploughing the same furrow, doing the same things in the same way that I was used to. It has, no doubt, worked quite well for me since I’ve achieved some very good results, which I’m very proud of. However, this year I had the feeling that I needed to do something “new.” I needed a new perspective from which I could start the new season. So when I was asked if I wanted to take part in the “Climb for Charity” project – and help raise money for Børneulykkesfonden (Children's Safety Foundation) by climbing the highest mountain in Africa, I said yes!

I had absolutely no idea what I was getting into – and if I had known what the last kilometer before reaching the top would be like (headache, stomach ache, fatigue and vomit), I probably would have thought twice – but I have no regrets.

The trip to Kilimanjaro has changed me in many ways – not only as an athlete, but also as a person. I was challenged in a whole new and different way – patience – Pole Pole – take it easy – that isn’t something that I normally practice.

During a period of time where all my triathlon colleagues put a lot of hours into training (something I would usually do, too), I spent 12 days without touching my bike or my swimwear. And I have to admit that I got a little desperate at the end. However, I don’t doubt for a second that it has only been good and beneficial for me. Having the courage to take some time off to reflect – to get inspired – to regain motivation – to rest – to try something new – that takes a real woman.