Staying power

By Jules Mountain

Break it down

“My goal seemed impossible, so I focused on something achievable. From Base Camp, my task was to climb the 700 metres up to Camp 1 – worry about the summit later. Break it into steps. Don’t overthink things. I only decided three weeks before that I’d do Everest. I met someone there who’d been preparing for 14 years. Decide your objectives, then do them.”

Use past experiences

“I survived cancer. I knew that if I could do that, I could summit Everest. Like any endurance feat, it was half physical, half mental. It’s extremely interesting to me that young, fit people rarely summit Everest and that’s because they don’t have the mental fitness to get there. Use past experiences to your advantage and keep a mental reward. Mine was making my daughters proud.”

Build a rhythm

“Going up a mountain face at a 70-degree ascent was awful. I thought, ‘How am I going to climb that?!’ I tackled it by going one step every four breaths. I focused only on the next step. I’d only look up on the count of 100. I formed a rhythm. Once I saw real progress I felt like I was on the home straight.”

Never quit

“I was pushing hard for us to keep going after the earthquake. I was buried under an avalanche but, once I knew I was okay, I was on to the next task. It’s about setting yourself hard, achievable goals that push you outside your comfort zone. If you quit, you’ve just made excuses for not giving it a go. And if you don’t give it a go, you’ll never know.”

Published on
April 9, 2017