Lucy Mecklenburgh is preparing for one of the biggest challenges of her life as she gets set to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. The former TOWIE star is joining her personal trainer Cecilia Harris and the team behind her exercise programme Results with Lucy to climb Africa's highest mountain and raise money for the charity Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
The 24-year-old was inspired to take part in the challenge by one of her Results with Lucy trainers called Sophie, who has cystic fibrosis. "It was on her bucket list, she always wanted to do it," Lucy told HELLO! Online. "So she signed up and then me and Cecilia were like, 'You know what, let's do it as well, we'll be able to raise more money, more awareness and we'll be able to support her all the way'."
Lucy Mecklenburgh is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for Cystic Fibrosis Trust
Although Lucy can't quite believe she's signed up for the challenge, she says she is glad to be raising awareness for the charity.
"I started looking into cystic fibrosis a little bit more and actually it really is lacking awareness and support and I thought it would be a really good thing," Lucy explained. "We did the charity boot camp at the Olympic park to raise money for it. I'm glad we're doing it but don't get me wrong I am really nervous!"
Lucy's biggest fear about the challenge? "I think getting altitude sickness, I'm really scared about that, and the one thing I'm most not looking forward to is not being able to have a shower or wash my hair for ten days," Lucy said laughing, admitting that she had enjoyed a pre-Kilimanjaro massage ahead of the trek.
The fitness fanatic has been training with an altitude mask to help prepare for the 5895 metre climb, but said her exercise routine hasn't changed too much.
Lucy is taking part in the challenge with Results With Lucy trainers Cecilia and Sophie
Lucy said: "I've just upped my cardio from what I normally do. I've done a little bit of training with an altitude mask which is really tough; we put up the altitude each time we use it and I'm a bit panicked about altitude now because it's very, very strange having your breathing restricted."
However she can get through it knowing the team is raising valuable money and awareness for charity, and is looking forward to one thing in particular.
"I'm most excited about doing something different. I would never choose to do anything like this and I'm glad that we've signed up, I'm glad that we're doing it and it's going to be something that's so surreal to do and get to the summit," Lucy said. "I think that's going to be the most amazing moment when we get there, I think it will be a great feeling."
Lucy will be blogging about her trek exclusively for HELLO! magazine, and promises to share photos and stories from the ten-day trip once she's successfully summited the mountain.
Lucy will blog about the challenge for HELLO! magazine
"It's going to be so new for me, so I'll just blog everything about how we're feeling," Lucy revealed, adding: "I think there's going to be gorgeous views so I'll just take lots of pictures. There are 25 people going that we've never met before so it will be nice to get their stories and find out why they're doing it."
Although Lucy admits she will be completely out of her comfort zone, she can count on her team for support and one special person back home too – her boyfriend Louis Smith.
"He thinks that I'm crazy for doing it but he's really supportive," Lucy enthused, before revealing what the highlights of her busy year have been.
"Ooh," she mused. "I would say probably this and Louis."
Lucy and the resultswithlucy.com team are taking part in the Mount Kilimanjaro trek sponsored by Ellesse to raise awareness for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust. To help support Lucy and team please visit justgiving.com/resultswithlucy.