Updated: Feb 24
As you continue on your fitness journey, you may want to set some goals or be rewarded for all your hard work. You can keep slogging it out in the gym if you want, but its in your best interest to diversify your exercise. By changing it up, you identify weaknesses and keep the mind fresh and engaged. And Climbing is one way you can exercise and keep it interesting at the sametime.
Integrate Exercise into your Life
I don't run or do any cardio, at all. Instead, I play basketball , go swimming and go for bike rides. You really need to integrate fitness into you life. Going for a bike ride along a river for a picnic, is one MILLION times better than riding an elliptical in a gym going nowhere. Feed your mind , keep exercise interesting, and it wont even seem like exercise. Just a healthy LIFESTYLE.
Different Exercises,Identify Weaknesses, Boost Motivation
This philosophy can also help you when you are doing focused training. You can identify your weaknesses and improve them. If you are doing a focused routine, you are really not approaching all the angles you need. You need to diversify or you wont develop a balanced body or strength.
I went climbing for the first time in a decade on the weekend. It was great to have a reward for the training I have been doing and I really enjoyed climbing. Additionally, it also gave me a huge boost in motivational drive to work out harder, so I can keep progressing the next time I climb. Are you starting to get bored with your gym routine. Go climbing and get a BIG reminder how important all those exercises are or identify if you are training correctly in the first place.
Climbing is a great Full body workout
Climbing is great for a full body workout, from your fingers through your core, to your toes. All those pull ups, finger and scapula hangs and horizontal rows finally pay dividends.
One arm Scapula pulls and 3 finger hangs were something I practised, before I went climbing. I'm sure you can think of a lot of exercises, to get you ready for your climbing test of strength.
We have heaps of examples of Core strength and Pulling strength you can practise before your next climb at Drlifepro and on Youtube. From Beginner Rings exercises to Advanced Dragon Flags so check out some of our videos on Youtube or in the blog and Subscribe to help the channel.
Manoeuvring your body to get to difficult holds, swapping positions by hopping on a small nook will clinging to a tiny crack, is a fantastic test for your core , balance and mental game.
Climbing will give you are great workout, particularly in coordinating your legs and arms to work together, to get that cling to the wall you need.
Test your body on the Climb
Climbing is like an ultimate test for you. You think, oh that's easy but as soon as you grab that first hold, its game on. You are working against gravity and with the elements to get to your goal at the top. Your mind is analysing and assessing all options and your body is fighting to stay on the wall and off the ground.
Overcoming fear and challenging yourself
Then there is the fear of falling which makes it all that much more exciting. You see a handhold above you. but you have to leap and reach up to get it. If you miss or slip, you fall. Climbing overhangs or even just inclines and having that feeling that you cant really support yourself is a great challenge to overcome.
Get out of the Gym
So get some friends together and find you local places to climb.
Get out of the gym, diversify your exercise and incorporate it into you life.
Most of all have fun doing it. Melbourne has Climbwest and Blochaus which are two great places to climb.
I've been around climbing people for around 30 years, and they are always a great bunch of supportive people, enjoying each others success and coaching and assisting anyone who they come into contact with. Its a great global community, that seems to delight in helping out even complete randoms, so you will feel welcomed. Getting out bouldering , climbing walls indoor or getting into rock climbing are all rewarding and special in their own way.
Go support your local climbing centre, and test out your own strength at the same time.