Training for Everest is no small feat. And nothing could have prepared me for the mental and physical toll it would have on me. Balancing it with daily life, working and being a mum, was difficult, to say the least.

But it has been totally worth it.

My training routine

If I’m honest, I didn’t anticipate being as ill as I was and how much this would impact my training. I work full time for the NHS on top of training and dealing with endometriosis whilst caring for a family has been quite the challenge in the run-up to going to Everest. I told myself If I really wanted it to happen, I would make it happen. I had to be inventive in fitting as much training as possible while balancing my illness and busy life.

I began by getting a lift to work and then walking the 2-mile journey home every day. I found it hard to fit in going to the gym or scheduling training weekly. I didn’t want to feel disappointed when endometriosis would get too much and throw me off course. I just kept doing things when I could and listening to my body. I didn’t want to exert myself and not be able to complete the trek at all.

When signing up to the trip I didn’t know what my future plans looked like in terms of management of my condition. I ended up on prostap injections which really had a detrimental effect on my daily living. I would get so tired and no matter what I did, I kept putting on weight. My mood dipped and I started to feel like I was climbing a mountain before even getting there.

A day in my life

backpack filled with diary, clothes and cosmetics

A typical day for me while training was a very busy one! I would start my morning routine by waking up at 6:30 to walk the dog. I would get myself ready and round up my two fantastic daughters, aged 12 and 14 and then drop them off at school and make my way to work by 8:30 am. However, a week before coming to Nepal I started a new job within the NHS tracking cancer patients throughout their NHS pathway. Which, on top of training for Everest, was enough to make my head explode!

I would usually get home by 5:30 pm to which I’m usually exhausted after a long busy day. This is when my busy family routine begins, from shopping, cooking, cleaning and walking our dog Luna. Then I finally sit down by around 10:30 to have an hour with my husband before bed. My busy day normally takes its toll on me by the evening and I normally spend my me-time nursing a huge endo belly.

Most days I power through my day and actually working and keeping busy works for me and keeps my mind off my endo pain. I do however take regular pain relief and this is where BeYou has come in super handy. Offering me discreet natural pain relief that I can use around my busy lifestyle.

With having unplanned prostap injections as a treatment it really derailed my plans. Whilst I did see improvement in my pain, I experienced many unpleasant side effects like hot flushes, insomnia, mood lows and weight gain. Which was obviously not ideal for my Everest training. At first, I would feel mentally low from not achieving as much as I planned but then I redirected this to the understanding I can only do my best. Trying as hard as I could, when I could, was the most important factor. My motto was to keep moving forward, no matter how slow just keep moving.

The Nerves

Sign for Everest base camp

I was most nervous about getting poorly on my trek. I knew that not having the comforts and things that I use to ease my pain and discomfort and wondering how I would cope with it was unnerving me. I planned to take things as they come and adapt as much as I could to my environment. I had worked too hard to give up now.

My family and friends have been incredibly supportive so much so my sister and mum decided to join me on the trek to support me and raise money. I sadly received some negative responses also but I tried not to let these remarks get to me. I was doing this, not them. I couldn’t allow negative comments to stop me from achieving my goals. You shouldn’t either.

Before flying out, I wasn’t feeling my best at all. Like I said, I’d started a new role in work a week before so I was feeling worn out by that but knew I had to dig deep to muster the energy to make it. Through all the challenges that training had thrown me, ultimately I knew I was ready to start my next adventure and I couldn’t wait to see what it had in store.

We are so proud of Jo, deciding to embark on this amazing venture and we are so grateful she wants to share it with her BeYou followers. We love the message she wants to spread to others about endometriosis and we can’t wait to see how she gets on. If you would like to see more of Jo you can follow her on Instagram and her Just Giving page.

Stay tuned for the rest of Jo’s Base Camp Diaries, coming very soon!

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