How Erica Celebrated Her Fortieth Birthday by Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro

Celebrating a fortieth birthday is a significant milestone, often marked by self-reflection and ambitious goal-setting. For Erica Fischer, this milestone became an opportunity to embark on an unforgettable adventure—climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. This story showcases how Erica, with unwavering determination and the support of Olde Town Athlete, turned her dream into a breathtaking reality.

Why Kilimanjaro?

During the pandemic, Erica, confined mostly indoors in Chicago, longed for a change. With her fortieth birthday on the horizon in 2022, she relocated to Colorado, drawn by the allure of its expansive mountainous landscapes and fresh, open air. A former triathlete and a dedicated athlete in high school, Erica sought a challenge that was not only physically demanding but also a bit daunting. The towering presence of Mt. Kilimanjaro called to her, promising the adventure of a lifetime.

Finding Community at Olde Town Athlete

Erica understood early on that occasional weekend hikes wouldn’t suffice for the rigorous demands of Kilimanjaro. She began her search for a local gym that could cater to her specific training needs and discovered Olde Town Athlete in Arvada. What made OTA stand out was its commitment to personalized fitness programs, which opposed the more common one-size-fits-all philosophy. At OTA, Erica joined a community where both the staff and fellow clients were not just aware of her goals but actively supported her in achieving them. This sense of community was vital, providing motivation and encouragement through every step of her journey.

Establishing Her Rhythm

Though Erica was no stranger to fitness regimes, the specialized weight training at Olde Town Athlete was new territory for her. Managing a full-time job while preparing for her climb meant Erica had to meticulously plan her weekly schedule. She dedicated her weekends to hiking, gradually increasing her outings to two or three times each weekend, covering distances of 6-8 miles on Saturdays and shorter 3-4 mile treks on Sundays. To optimize recovery and maintain balance, Erica often ended her weekends with a gentle two-mile cool-down hike.

During the weekdays, Erica’s training sessions at OTA were strategically placed on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This schedule allowed her to engage in heavy lifting early in the week and lighter, recovery-focused workouts closer to the weekend, ensuring she was always primed for her hikes.

Persevering Through Adversity

Erica’s journey tested more than her physical stamina; it was a test of her emotional and mental resilience as well. During her training, Erica’s mother was diagnosed with cancer, casting a shadow of uncertainty over her plans. Despite the emotional turmoil, encouragement from her mother and sister to continue her quest gave Erica the strength to persist. Her training in the Colorado hills not only prepared her physically but also provided a therapeutic escape from her worries. Throughout these challenging times, Erica found strength in a simple yet powerful mantra: “You can do hard things.”

Conquering Kilimanjaro

The months of rigorous training culminated in a profound sense of achievement as Erica stood on the summit of Kilimanjaro. More than the physical climb, Erica cherished the journey—the preparation and personal growth that came with it. Reaching the peak was exhilarating, a physical testament to her dedication, supported by her countless hours of training back in Colorado.

Advice for Your Big Adventure

Reflecting on her experience, Erica offers a piece of advice to anyone contemplating a similar life-changing adventure: “Don’t wait.” She emphasizes the importance of commitment and the power of sharing your goals with others. At Olde Town Athlete, Erica found a support network that was crucial to her success—the trainers and fellow gym-goers became her cheerleaders, motivators, and accountability partners. “Having people around who push you towards your goals makes all the difference,” she notes.

What Will Erica Tackle Next?

Now, with the Kilimanjaro climb behind her, Erica continues to maintain her fitness regimen, enjoying the routine that has become a significant part of her life. While she hasn’t decided on her next big challenge, she is certain it will involve pushing her limits and possibly exploring new horizons.

Your Story Is Waiting…

Inspired by Erica’s journey? Ready to tackle your own challenges? Reach out and schedule an introductory chat with one of our coaches at Olde Town Athlete today. Whether you’re aiming to climb a mountain or simply looking to improve your fitness, let us help you achieve your goals. Together, we can climb mountains, both literal and metaphorical.