Fitness Does (not) have to be Boring: Rock Climbing

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I love the feeling of stretching my limits.  I thrive off of challenging myself to be better, stronger, and more flexible.  After I stopped dancing, I was afraid I would never feel adrenaline like that pump through my veins again.  Then I discovered climbing.  The challenge it offered was completely new to me.  It is strategic and physically demanding.  I became hooked after my first climb.  I loved the feeling of being high above the ground.  The joy of reaching just out of my comfort zone.  Fearing a fall while knowing I had a rope to catch me.  Climbing has a hold on me and I never want it to let go.

My forearms burn and my legs shake until I think they will give out.  I can visualize my next move but my body doesn’t want to respond.  That’s when I get the energy, that’s when I can push.  It’s all in the mind, if your mind pushes, your body will follow.  I need to send this, I need to push my body to its full potential.  The triumph at the top is worth the sweat, pain, and struggle.  Flying back down to earth is rejuvenating.  I feel recharged and I’m ready to tackle the next challenge.

Climbing can be done in multiple venues, a gym or outdoors.  My home gym is the rockwall at school, but sometimes I like to take my adventures outside to boulder at the Corona Del Mar state beach.  It is important to have an activity that can be done indoors and out so that you can keep your body moving no matter what the weather or where you are located.  My favorite part of the sport is that it works my whole body.  I get cardio, a core workout, and it is a mental challenge so I’m working my brain.  That doesn’t even include the social aspect.  Climbing is very much a social sport.  You need a belayer and I have never been to an empty gym.  People sharing an interest and doing the thing they love makes for a great atmosphere.

Next time you are looking for a new sport or something to do on a rainy afternoon, check out your nearest climbing gym or rockwall.  Most cities have one available even if it’s inside a sporting goods store.  I find mine by searching Google for rock gyms near (enter city).  Try it, you might just be surprised how much you enjoy it.

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