Preparation for Kokoda

It’s been almost a year in the making, and I’m a week away from leaving! How the hell did I get here!

It started in December 2012. I made the decision to undertake the trek of my life. I signed the dotted line and paid my registration fee for the Westpac Rescue  Helicopter Service – Trek for Choppers.

Then it began…

The walking. Oh yes, the walking, walking and more walking. Every day (well almost). Right throughout those miserable winter mornings in the dark and out the other side into the wonderful spring mornings we are experiencing now. It hasn’t just become a routine, it’s become a necessity, to achieve a very significant goal, and that is to SURVIVE Kokoda.

Next was the diet. Clean eating, naturopath visits (Mullen Natural Health Centre), endless supplements, liver detoxing, and generally paying attention to what I was (and still am) putting into my mouth. I’ve been boring at times, trying to stay on the straight and narrow, while others around me have indulged, but it’s all been worth it. I’ve lost 8 kgs since Christmas and that was just a by-product of the process, not the objective.

Then the fitness training kicked in. Early on I visited a physiotherapist (thanks Zoran Mitrevski!), an exercise physiologist (thanks Zeon Bagnall!), started Pilates (Pilates for Life at the Junction), started the Simply Women Fitness Program with the lovely Lisa Mills and she was also very kind enough to do me up a strength training program for the gym and Anna Mountford from Essential Remedy has been an absolute Godsend with her remedial massage.

As each month has passed, I have slowly but surely seen and felt subtle changes in my overall health and fitness. It does take time and the slower the better I think. I asked someone who had done Kokoda 7 times, what their best advice to me would be, and  he said “Just be intentional, every day”. By that he meant, just do something, every day, whether it be a walk, a run, yoga, pilates, meditate, eat well.. anything. Just always keep working towards your goal.

The past few months have included some gradually intensifying practice walks, testing out socks, packs, walking sticks, high protein snacks in our gear throughout Glenrock, The Watigans and Caves Beach through to Catherine Hill Bay, with the biggest walk culminating in 23 km on a very hot day. I was pretty chuffed to come through the other side of that one feeling quite good! This was the turning point for me, in feeling confident and ready to tackle Kokoda.

This year has thrown a few challenges my way, including a redundancy from a job I loved, and I’ve managed to stay relatively resilient throughout, however I reckon I’m going to face one of the biggest challenges of my life (apart from losing my first born child) in a little over a week.

If you’d like to check our progress live, while we’re actually trekking, bookmark this map!

Wish me luck and watch this space upon my return…..

Oh and if you still haven’t donated, and you’d like to…this page will be open until the end of October 🙂


  One thought on “Preparation for Kokoda

  1. October 9, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    ❤ Loved it x

  2. October 9, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    Fabulous start to your blog Michelle, love the ‘just be intention’ I am taking that into my own health and fitness journey.
    So looking forward to future posts and hearing about your trek.
    L x

  3. Lilian
    October 10, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    Have only witnessed a small part of your preparation but know that you’ll be hugely successful, Michelle. Time nearing now so good luck with the final days of training etc.Lilianx

  4. October 12, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    OMG – you are ready, you are excited and you are an amazing woman Chelle. What a journey this will be! Looking forward to reading the post-Kokoda blog!

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