5 Things I have learned from rock climbing

Now I am not a die-hard climber by any means, I am more of a casual climber. My goal when I hit the wall is not to reach my PR every time, but to simply get on the wall. Some days, I would rather do anything else than climb/workout. After work, I am tired, mentally and physically. So going to the gym can be difficult. But even on the worst of days, I have never regretted going.

I have been climbing, indoors and outdoors, somewhat regularly for the past year. Here are a fews things I have learned along the way…

1. It makes you really strong…

Adrenalineย burns calories and when you are someone who isn’t the biggest fan of heights, climbing can be a great workout. Even without the heights, climbing uses a majority of your muscles. I did a full, all the way down and all the way back up, pull-up the other day…if that isn’t proof, I don’t know what is

2. It teaches you patience…

My boyfriend is a die-hard climber. When we go to the climbing gym, I love to watch him climb and watch people gaze at him with amazement as he tops out on a route that they have been trying for hours. So when I am struggling with a route that is his warm-up, day after day, it is frustrating. But the best part about climbing is you can really see your progress. It takes time and persistence to get better and I love being able to do routes I know would have been impossible for me last year.

3. A lot of people rock climb…

A lot of people climb, especially at my work. It’s great because it has given me another way to meet people, which is nice when you are a transplant. Even though climbing is an individual sport, everyone is supportive and love to see you exceed. Usually, when I go climbing, I am the least experienced person in the group and therefore I am usually the worst climber. It is intimidating and I usually feel like I am holding everyone back. But no one has ever made me feel that way because they are excited to have another climber in the group and want to see you improve.

4. It is not dangerous…

I don’t know how many times I am going to have to explain this to my mother, but climbing is not dangerous. There are a lot of “rules” in place to make sure that you do not get hurt. Most of these rules you can learn at the gym.

Here are the things you need to do to be safe: surround yourself with experienced people, get certified to belay, always speak up if something seems off, and wear a helmet if you climb outdoors.

5. It takes you to some pretty beautiful spots…

If you love the outdoors, climbing is the sport for you. Everywhere that we go climbing outdoors, it is beyond beautiful. Even if you have a bad day climbing, you still have nothing to complain about. California has some pretty exceptional climbing spots, including Yosemite, St. Helena, Mickey’s Beach, Gold Wall…and so many more. Below are a few of my favorite pictures from the last year.

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This is me climbing at Mickey’s Beach.
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Josh at Mickey’s Beach.
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The views at St. Helena.
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Josh belaying at Gold Wall (near Yosemite).
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Josh belaying Preston in Red Rocks, NV.

What are you waiting for? Get out there!

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