Celebrating 20 years of walking together: Deloitte and Oxfam Trailwalker
Oxfam Trailwalker has come to be a tradition at Deloitte with many of Deloitte walkers achieving “Legend” status. One standout is our very own Deloitte Foundation Chairman, Dennis Goldner, who recently completed his 20th walk! Deloitte Legends share their secrets for success, to help walkers old and new train and tackle the trail with confidence.
When 4 become 1
Oxfam Trailwalker is first and foremost a group challenge. Deloitte walkers share their tips for building a strong, happy and healthy team:
- Plan and train together – be open how you are feeling during training and on the trail.
- Shared goals and timing are important – agree a target finish time. It becomes difficult if some members want a 24 hour finish and others are happy with 36. It’s important to manage expectations for all members of the team, and it will help your support team be where they need to be when you need them.
- Great teams don’t happen overnight – It starts with knowing your team mates capabilities and working with them, and drawing on their own motivations and aspirations to complete the event.
Practice makes perfect
Let’s face it, 50, 55 or 100km is no walk in the park. Remember to include some of these gems shared by Deloitte teams in your training routine:
- Do a night walk! It’s important to test and be familiar with your night kit and to get a feel for the peculiarity of walking in the dark.
- Try to walk all sections of the trail by the time you finish your training if possible. It will be an advantage mentally to know what to expect.
- Test your equipment and game plan. Be it shoes, socks, clothes, walking poles, backpacks or water bladders – see what works best for you. Treat your practice walks like the real deal. Time your breaks, see what food or liquid is easiest to digest. Been told to Vaseline or bandage your feet – now’s the time to try it!
And when the big day arrives
Nothing quite competes with the atmosphere at the Oxfam Trailwalker startline. It’s a favourite for Deloitte volunteers who enthusiastically sport fancy dress at dawn and celebrate the excited walkers. Deloitte Legends describe what helps them put one foot in front of the other:
- Never lose sight of why you’re walking! In the words of an 8-time walker, “It’s always important to have the primary goal at the front of your mind – to provide assistance to some of the world’s most vulnerable people in the hope that they can have a better and longer life. When the trail is at its worst, just think for a minute how trivial your own pain is compared to what many people endure every day of their lives. Then toughen up!”
- Be in the moment: Some fond moments of Deloitte Legend walkers are (1) hiking at night and stopping and looking up at the stars – so peaceful; (2) sitting with the team at Bellbird Grove in the sun after walking at night and enjoying breakfast and homemade masala tea; (3) the beautiful view of Jerusalem Bay near the start of Oxfam Trailwalker Sydney on a sunny day.
Thank you so much to our fabulous Deloitte walkers past and present for their helpful tips and suggestions, and of course, thank you for 20 years of walking together!