The Road Ahead : April May 2016
RACQLIVING.COM.AU 18 THE ROAD AHEAD APR/MAY 2016 22 27 28 ACCORDING TO BRISBANE BMA Maintenance Planner Andrew Karas, anyone can climb a mountain, but it’s doing it to help others that makes it ‘special’. For Andrew, the peak in question was one of the world’s most famous and its tallest free-standing mountain – Africa’s Kilimanjaro – and the people he was helping were those with prostate cancer, including his grandfather. It was thoughts of his grandfather William Roberts, who has since become one of the 3300 Australian men who die from prostate cancer every year, that kept him going to the 5895-metre summit. “We were above the clouds and the feeling was indescribable, amazing” Andrew said. “But what we did it for was what made it worthwhile.” Andrew was among 22 Australians who undertook the first Kilimanjaro Challenge in 2014 to raise funds for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA). He was also one of only 10 who made it to the top after a five-day climb, some of it in the dark. Some were crippled by altitude sickness, unable to stop vomiting; another LIFESTYLE WELLBEING by an eye infection; others by exhaustion. Andrew, an auto electrician who has worked in the mining industry for the past four years, had no experience of mountain climbing when he signed up for the Challenge. At the time, he was based near Blackwater, working 12-hour shifts five days a week and, while fit, he knew he needed to prepare for the climb. After not “doing much” for the first six of the 12-month lead-up, he found a US Navy SEAL eight-week fitness program online that focussed on strength and endurance. His verdict – it worked. “The climb of Kilimanjaro was five days up and three down and it was a different degree of exhaustion than I’d ever experienced,” Andrew said. “I was eating like a horse and sleeping really well at night, despite the minus zero temperatures and being in small tents. “It took us four days just to get to the base camp – we’d set out at midday after being dropped off at the entrance to the national park by bus. Day four we didn’t get much sleep after a tuna bake for dinner that didn’t agree with anyone, and set off again for the summit at midnight. “By sunrise, it didn’t look that far to the top, but it took us two hours to cover 200 metres. “Everything inside me was saying ‘stop’ but another part of me was saying ‘remember why you are doing this’.” Andrew raised $12,000 for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia. Earlier this year he was cycling 10km to and from work every day, hiking 12-20km at weekends, and completing a gym program five days a week. The reason? He’s trekking the 96km Kokoda Trail this month (April) for Beyond Blue. Based on his record, there’s a good chance he’ll do just that. n ...IT TOOK US TWO HOURS TO COVER 200 METRES Twenty inspiring Australians are being sought to take part in this year’s Save a Man Kilimanjaro Challenge, which starts on November 2 and will raise funds for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia. If you’d like to join the 12-day trek, or for more information, go to inspiredadventures.com.au. SAVE A MAN ACCEPTING THE CHALLENGE Andrew Karas before and after scaling Kilimanjaro.
February March 2016
June July 2016