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Rock Climbing Success

Posted Jan 16 2013 7:24pm

So, I survived rock climbing last night with not much damage to my manicure! We walked in to what looked like an adult playground.

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My friend Sarah from work invited a bunch of us to join her. She is belay certified (and is going to teach me!) so she was kind enough to let us all try it.

I mentioned that I had a membership years ago to a rock climbing gym, but it felt way different this time around for a number of reasons. I am a lot stronger than I was in high school. Specifically, I’ve gained strength in my upper body.

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I am not going to lie and say that I am not proud of my back muscles. I worked hard for those!

I had never belayed until yesterday. Belaying is when you are hooked up in a harness and a belayer has their life in your hands guides the rope from below so that you won’t fall to the ground if you slip off the wall.

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I had only bouldered previously, which is basically climbing (only to a certain height obviously) without being attached to anything.

I wore my heart rate monitor the whole time just to see when and if my heart rate shot up at any point. Well, let’s just say I had a major adrenaline rush the first time I went up. I looked down and my heart rate went up to 200! I know someone who was injured when the belayer was not paying attention. I definitely trusted Sarah but being that it was the first time I was up that high, I expected to feel nervous. The second time, I was totally fine!

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After I went up, Maija put the harness on and tried it out too.

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Maija and I bouldered for a while, while Sarah, her man, and some friends scaled the wall. One of our co-workers even brought his daughter. She was fearless!

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Eventually, Sarah did a level 7 (not that I really know what that means, but apparently it’s pretty hard, and a 9/10 is the hardest). She told me that she knew I could do it. I figured I’d give it a shot and that would be my last climb for the night.

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My forearms were killing at this point. You are constantly gripping so you are using those muscles. Plus, my feet were throbbing from my shoes.

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They are supposed to be tight, but I think my feet definitely grew since last time I wore them. Anyway, I harnessed up and went for the climb. I got past the hard part pretty quickly (the over hang), but I felt fatigued when I got to this one point.

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That stupid rock, I couldn’t get past it. I swung off and told Sarah to let me down but she said “No, you have to finish!”. I tried 3 times and almost gave up, but eventually got over that hump and made it to the top! WOO!

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I’m so thankful that she pushed me because it felt so good to finish. Sarah tried to teach us a few techniques along the way, too!

  • Always be moving your feet. You can hoist yourself up with your lower body instead of tiring out your upper body right away.
  • Try to hang instead of contracting your muscles to hold yourself tight against the wall. You will exhaust your muscles less.
  • Have a plan before you go up. Watch someone else and study the color pattern so you aren’t wasting any time.

Sarah insists that it’s more about technique than anything, but I can’t help but think that some serious muscle strength would help the situation. ;)

Fun times! We will definitely be back soon.

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I immediately dug into the hummus and lentil chips the minute I walked into the door. I was starving. It was past 9pm and I hadn’t eaten since 5pm – and only a protein bar.

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Eventually, I settled on a sweet potato mess, like Monday night . And a few spoonfuls of almond butter, of course.

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Since I’d really given my biceps and back a beating from climbing, I decided to focus on shoulder, chest, triceps, and abs this morning. I did each circuit 4 times back to back.

-dumbbell chest press with feet straight in the air

-back extensions

 

-dumbbell shoulder press

-bicycles

 

-triangle pushups (because Paige swayed me!)

-leg raises/v-ups

 

I had enough time to do 20 minutes of incline HIIT and head out!

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Eww.. sweaty arm! Haha!
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