So, I survived rock climbing last night with not much damage to my manicure! We walked in to what looked like an adult playground.
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.
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.
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!
After I went up, Maija put the harness on and tried it out too.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
Eventually, I settled on a sweet potato mess, like Monday night. And a few spoonfuls of almond butter, of course.
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
-dumbbell shoulder press
-triangle pushups (because Paige swayed me!)
I had enough time to do 20 minutes of incline HIIT and head out!