Everesting. We see the word over and over again. But what does it really mean? and when can you say you completed an Everesting? Let’s dissect the so-called hardest climbing challenge ever.
The description of Everesting, as seen on the official website, actually states it clearly. It is a climbing challenge. A heavy one. The hint is in its name of course: the goal of this challenge is to reach the number of vertical metres equal to the height of Mount Everest. That’s 8,848m of vertical assent. Are your legs ready?
The number of altimeters is not insurmountable. It’s the simple rules that make this challenge a real challenge. You can only claim you are Everesting when you have overcome the 8,848m in one single ride—without a night’s sleep. It can be done on the climb of your choice and you must also descend via the same road. You have to repeat the route, until you have cycled at least the height of Mount Everest.
Of course, regular breaks are allowed. But predecessors prove that long stops do not make it any easier. You will probably not be able to do this in much less than 16 hours.
The choice of which climb to pick is also a strategic one. For example, if you opt for the Camerig in South Limburg, you will have to ride it up and down 66 times. That is really tiring, and it will probably get boring after the second time. This will also begin to feel more like an interval training on steroids (figuratively). Perhaps some cyclists will be better able to pull this off than others.
The real climbers will probably feel more comfortable opting for mountains in the Alps or Pyrenees. The constant tension on your legs muscles for about 1.5hrs each time becomes hypnotising. In addition, you don’t have to climb the same mountain up and down as much. And that makes the challenge a lot better. For example, after each ascent, you can let your legs and body rest for a while. Furthermore, it’s important to continuously eat enough to keep you going.
Training & material
Of course, trying to Everest ride requires a lot of preparation. For example, in addition to selecting the right location, you also need to think all the material, training, and clothing you must bring.
16hrs plus on the bike is intense. So make sure that your bicycle is properly maintained before you start. Make sure everything runs smoothly, and no weird sounds come out of your bike. Where normally a 28, 30, or even 32-cassette as a lowest gear would be overkill, it won’t hurt for this challenge. Certainly, later on in the day, you will be grateful when you can still turn the pedals…
In terms of clothing, keep in mind all weather conditions. A lot can happen in the timeframe of the challenge.
You have got to be physically fit to Everest. 16hrs of cycling sounds easier than it is, and if you start that kind of journey unprepared, you might lose your mind during the challenge. Fortunately, there are a lot of tutorials and plans online that can help you set up your own training plan.
You should also spend time focusing on your cycling posture. Especially if you’re not sure what you will face on such an arduous ride. In a long ride like this, the physical effects will be magnified. If you are crooked or suffer from, for example, a knee injury, you will often automatically compensate by adopting a different posture. That means you might sit in an unnatural position for about 14hrs. And you will definitely feel that.
Try to finish the training period in the same position. If it is obvious during a bike fitting that you can hold a different posture better, do this before the training period. It will give your body the time it needs to get used to the new posture.