Mt. Kilimanjaro – Week 28: Injuries, Flag, and Fundraising


Some of the team on a group training hike!

Time is flying by! Summer is over, fall is here and we fly out to Tanzania in 15 days!!!

The last couple of weeks have been a blur. As we inch closer to our departure date, my life has been in the fast lane. I realized I haven’t blogged in a few weeks and I apologize to my readers. From the wedding engagement and wedding planning, to purchasing a new home, to starting a new role at CIBC, and all of the Kilimanjaro training, I’ve found it difficult to take some time to get to the blog. But here we are…let’s get down to business! 🙂


About 3 weeks ago after a nice long 7hr hike, I was thinking to myself, “Good work Jeff. This is the first time in two years since you’ve gone without some sort of injury during training!” I may have spoken too soon. A day or two afterwards, I noticed a sharp pain in my left knee, similar to it wanting to give out. I though perhaps I had pushed myself too hard in the training so I took a week off of leg exercises to give my knee some time to recover. It didn’t work, so I headed to my physiotherapist (Kyle) to see if he could help.

After a 30 minute examination, Kyle mentioned the pain was caused due to some muscle imbalances and weakness in my hip and glutes (I cannot recall the technical term for his prognosis…but can get it for those who are curious). He immediately started a high powered ultrasound session to help speed the healing process, and requested I complete 2 at-home muscle strengthening exercises for my hips and glutes, as well as a few stretches. He believes the issues would correct themselves in about 3-4 weeks, just in time for the climb!

Two days later, during the second session, he wanted to try “Dry Needling” on my glute and hip. Not sure what dry needling is? Neither was I…and I wish I never did afterwards – lol. Think of acupuncture, but with a longer needle, and having the therapist manipulate the needle while it’s deeply inserted into your muscles. What is it supposed to do? It helps draw red blood cells to the trigger point, and helps your body release toxins in the area causing the issue.

Curious? Here is a youtube video. Warning…if you don’t like needles, you may want to skip this video. (note – this is not my video and I am not the patient although my needles were inserted in my glute and left hip).

Immediately after the dry needling, I felt a noticeable difference in my mobility and flexibility…however the pain in my glute and hip lasted about 6 hours. During my 3rd session he informed me my muscles are so tight, that I bent one of his needles and I should also get some massage therapy on the areas of concern to help loosen them up. Kyle and I are still working together (I see him 2-3 times a week) and I should be all set for the climb. Onward and upwards! 🙂

The Flag

Some of our team with the flag

Our team will be carrying a large flag to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro. The flag proudly showcases our team climb logo, featuring the support for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

Two weeks ago we brought the flag to the CIBC Run for the Cure kickoff event (our first public team event) where we had members of the public write heartfelt messages of hope, inspiration, and encouragement not only for the climbers, but for those who are affected by breast cancer in some way, shape, or form.

If you’d like to sign the flag and have your message be proudly displayed on the tallest free-standing mountain in the world, let me know and I can schedule some time to have you come down to the office and sign it.


Our team goal is to raise at least $100,000 for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation before we leave for the climb. As of this evening, our team has raised an amazing $97,373 !!!! We’re less than $2,700 away from hitting our goal!!! With that said, I have some exciting news!

If you haven’t had a chance to donate to the foundation in support of our climb, now is the best time. Donate by October 5th, and you’ll have a chance to win a short-haul flight with Air Canada! Every $50 donation will receive 1 ballot. Want more chances? Every $50 increment will give you another ballot (i.e. $100 donation = 2 ballots!).

All the funds you donate will go directly to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation which in turn support cancer research, education and awareness initiatives across the country.

Please help us hit our goal…as it will make that much more impactful for the foundation and the moment we reach the top of Kilimanjaro, knowing we have you behind us every step of the way.


Some of our team on our last group training hike

Some of our team during our last group training hike Saturday September 19th, 2015



Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 9.01.57 PM

Donate Now!









As we gear up for the climb in two weeks, we’ve started to taper our training. We need to ensure our immune system is top notch, not stressed or fatigued, and our bodies recover from any injuries. So the last week has been light in the training aspect…and the upcoming two weeks will be even lighter. I’ll continue to watch what I eat to ensure I’m detoxing my system before the climb. I can proudly say I have not had a cup of coffee or an alcoholic beverage since July. I’m really looking forward to an ice cold beer after the climb! 🙂

This week I completed the following:

September 20-27
Monday: Glute & hip strengthening exercises & stretches
Tuesday: Glute & hip strengthening exercises & stretches
Wednesday: Glute & hip strengthening exercises & stretches
Thursday: Stretches / Rest
Friday: Glute & hip strengthening exercises & stretches
Saturday: 6hr hike + Glute & hip strengthening exercises & stretches
Sunday: 5hr hike + stretches

The upcoming week I will hit the gym for some light cardio and weight training as I continue to monitor my knee pain, in addition to relaxing at home after work.

Thanks for your continued support and interest everyone!


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