Rock Climbing with Stef

in All Posts

Rock climbing:  Start at the bottom…


And work your way up!


Stef took me rock climbing at her gym.  She climbs 6 to 7 days a week for HOURS at a time!  As a result, she has developed pretty amazing arm muscles!  And met lots of fun people… like her boyfriend Jack.  🙂


I was very nervous to try rock climbing.  I made Stef explain to me 5 different times how she’s NOT going to drop me, and I’m NOT going to hurt myself. 


Let me tell you – hauling yourself up a 45-foot vertical wall works every single tiny arm muscle.  It was a very good strength training workout!  For a full body workout, Stef says she does intervals where she’ll haul butt up the wall a few times, do push up or sit ups in between, and run a mile or so on the treadmill. 


Before our climb, we went to a lovely restaurant downtown.  I was still pretty full from the blueberry pancakes at brunch, so I just had a light salad with pear and bread.


And a hot tea:


And after the climb, I had a Clif bar.  Oh so appropriate!  🙂 And I love this flavor.


A BIG THANKS to my wonderful friends Stef and Jack for hosting me the past two days!


And now I’m with Katy and Anne P, and we’re going to get into the car and go to Baltimore for the conference!  See you at the POM Wonderful Cocktail Party!


Have you ever rock climbed?  Did you think it was scary??  I definitely did!



  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin March 19, 2010, 4:46 pm

    Rock climbing looks so fun! I’ve never done it. Do you know what gym that was at in DC??

    • caitlin March 19, 2010, 10:25 pm

      it was called sport rock!

  • Kalli@fitandfortysomething March 19, 2010, 4:47 pm

    Yes i did when i was in college. we went climbing outside-its called top roping-i think! i was so scard but felt so amazing when i got to the top…..i was so proud of myself because i hate heights! it was awesome.
    good job today 😉

  • brittany March 19, 2010, 4:47 pm

    I went rock climbing in a place right around Orlando, Longwood I think?, and it was SO FUN!! My arms were sore for days but I still can’t wait to go back~!

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing March 19, 2010, 4:48 pm

    I have never rock climbed but it DOES sound super scary!!! I bet that is one intense workout… I imagine that I would feel muscles that I never even knew I had! 🙂

  • jessica g March 19, 2010, 4:55 pm

    i love the tabard inn! my friends got married there and it was such a wonderful place for a close, intimate event.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) March 19, 2010, 4:55 pm

    i haven’t yet, but you’d think i would have since i’ve lived in colorado for 2 years now! i’m hoping sometime this summmer…but i had to lose some weight so i could actually pull myself up the dang mountain 🙂

  • Megan March 19, 2010, 4:56 pm

    Not scary at all. Just awesome. Between my freshman and sophomore year of college I interned at a church camp and was in the charge of the rock climbing wall, zip line over a ravine and then the rapelling off a huge rock. I miss that place!!

  • Jenny March 19, 2010, 4:57 pm

    I’m a member of a rock climbing team and I love it- it’s killer sometimes, though!

  • Evan Thomas March 19, 2010, 5:01 pm

    I was on the rock climbing team 7th and 8th grade. I’m a certified belayer but I wouldn’t trust myself to remember how, haha

  • caronae March 19, 2010, 5:03 pm

    That sounds wonderful! I love rock climbing a lot and think it’s a great workout!

  • Liz March 19, 2010, 5:06 pm

    I’ve never rock climbed and would love to know what gym that was at! Looks like a great workout.

  • Carrie H March 19, 2010, 5:10 pm

    Totally unrelated, but check out this cool site I found and am now sending from one beer lover to another:

  • Kate March 19, 2010, 5:15 pm

    I was supposed to learn when my University built the climbing wall, but during the lesson I broke down crying halfway through. I’m not a fan of heights or having really skinny guys old the rope that is supposed to keep me from crashing to the ground.

    I regret giving up now, but I never have had the motivation to try again. (I’m still scared of heights and having skinny people hold the rope.)

  • Becky @ flybynyght March 19, 2010, 5:19 pm

    I loved rock climbing when I tried it – but when I was at the top and had to lean back, away from the wall – it was and is the only time I have ever felt afraid of heights. But I’d totally do it again!!!

  • Amy @ Second City Randomness March 19, 2010, 5:21 pm

    That looks like so much fun! I did a really basic one years ago. Would love to go again- and to do it outdoors! I bet your arms are going to BURN tomorrow!

  • Christyne March 19, 2010, 5:27 pm

    I loved to a rock climb. I went to UCF and the gym there had a rock climbing wall. So on days I wasn’t motivated for a traditional workout, I would head over to the rock climbing and do that. So much fun and a great exercise as well. =)

  • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs March 19, 2010, 5:28 pm

    Ive always thought wall climbing looked so hard, and so fun! I’m very jealous you got to do that .. I think I’ll add it to my List!! 😀
    Have a great afternoon 🙂

  • Nancy March 19, 2010, 5:44 pm

    Yes! I’ve been climbing since 1994, but after moving to South Western Ontario, there just aren’t any indoor climbing places around and I reallllly miss it.

  • Morgan @ Healthy Happy Place March 19, 2010, 5:45 pm

    You look buff climbing that wall! way to go! I’d love to try rock climbing but my gym doesn’t offer it

  • Kelly March 19, 2010, 5:50 pm

    Wow, what a kick ass gym. I’m jealous, I would love to try a climbing wall again.

  • Amber K @ sparkpeople March 19, 2010, 5:52 pm

    I have never done it before, but it sounds awesome! I would be totally scared, but it would feel like such a huge accomplishment to make it even part way!

  • alli March 19, 2010, 5:55 pm

    i went a few times with my brother. it was scary outside, but the indoor ones aren’t bad.
    one of my HS teachers died in a fall 🙁 ouch.
    stef sounds hardcore with her intervals!

  • Heather @ Side of Sneakers March 19, 2010, 6:02 pm

    I LOVE rock climbing- I haven’t been since I was a teenager though

  • Joanne March 19, 2010, 6:15 pm

    Good job. I’m not sure I’d like to rock climb. I’m not afraid of heights but for some reason it lacks appeal. Maybe with a few people it could be fun.

  • TorontoGirloutWest March 19, 2010, 6:20 pm

    Is that place a complete gym too!?!? Never been to one that tricked out!!

    But yup I’ve gone before – a couple of times. I always make the rookie mistake of not sticking closely enough to the wall so I end up using my arms too much and my legs not nearly enough. Which means I’m in ridonculous amounts of pain afterwards!!!

    Looks like you’re having a blast – enjoy the Conference! 🙂

    • caitlin March 19, 2010, 10:26 pm

      they had some treadmills and a yoga room!

  • Jolene ( March 19, 2010, 6:32 pm

    I love rock climbing!!!!!!!! I have done it quite a bit, and I wasn’t too scared.

  • Amanda March 19, 2010, 6:33 pm

    I once had to take a troop of teenage girls to a rock climbing wall for a few hours. I was probably the most fearful out of everyone! My arms were shaking so hard but at the same time it was addicting! I would love to go more often but it is so $ !

  • Amy March 19, 2010, 6:38 pm

    I did it a couple weeks ago, had a panic attack halfway up, and had to come down. Not a very fun experience… but I would try it again! 😉

  • Ashley March 19, 2010, 6:50 pm

    Chris + I LOVE rock climbing and bouldering. We just joined a gym and have really gotten into it quite a bit since moving to Colorado 🙂 Have a great weekend!

  • Erika March 19, 2010, 6:53 pm

    I looove rock climbing…did it oodles of times while in undergraduate…my roommate and I would run 3 miles to the climbing wall, climb for hours often with other friends, run home, then hit the local burrito place ($4 for a huuuge burrito)….was some of the best times ever….need to get myself back to a climbing wall…it is soo fun…hope you enjoyed yourself 🙂 HUGS

  • Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) March 19, 2010, 7:01 pm

    I’m really scared of it, even at an indoor place like that. It looks like an intense workout though!

  • clay March 19, 2010, 7:02 pm

    Nope never rock climbed but it looks thrilling!

  • Jenn @ LiveWellFitNow March 19, 2010, 7:33 pm

    I have never gone rock climbing but I tell ya…I totally want to!!! It seems so awesome! And such a fabulous way to work your body in a completely different way.

  • Di March 19, 2010, 7:34 pm

    Its been a while since I went rock climbing but I remember it being fun! Hehehe that’s the ONE flavor of clif bar I don’t like! I LOVE LOVE LOVE the choc/mint clif builder bars, have you tried those?

    • caitlin March 19, 2010, 10:26 pm

      no they had that flavor there but i skipped it – should’ve tried it!

  • Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday March 19, 2010, 7:46 pm

    I have gone rock climbing before (indoor of course). The key is to push up with your legs. I actually find bouldering much more difficult

    This post makes me want to go again.

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) March 19, 2010, 8:48 pm

    My college gym had a rockclimbing wall and I went a few times. I was too heavy back then to do it well but loved doing it.

  • lauren @ Eater not a runner March 19, 2010, 9:25 pm

    I’ve never tried but I would definitely be scared!

  • Megan @ Eat.Scrap.Run March 19, 2010, 9:32 pm

    I recently found a place with indoor climbing walls near me, and I have been wanting to go. Where did you get those shoes? I think my running shoes would be too bulky to wear while climbing. Glad I saw your post, I never would have thought about that before going 🙂

    • caitlin March 19, 2010, 10:27 pm

      they are special climbing shoes – stef loaned them to me. i sure you can rent them too!

  • Emily Eats and Exercises March 19, 2010, 9:48 pm

    Oh I’d love to try that! I’m a little scared of heights, but I think I could get past that in an indoor gym in a harness. I bet it’s great exercise.

  • j.l. March 19, 2010, 10:06 pm

    yes! several times a week. both indoor (mostly indoors) and outdoors. both toprope (which you did) and lead, where you clip yourself into hanging carbiners drilled into the wall instead of from a pulley at the top. i absolutely love it.

    i’m sure stef will tell you it IS a full body work out. as you progress into higher rated climsb that require as much technique as strength, you realize how important leg strength is and how much you push with them as much as pull with your arms. rely too long on sheer arm strength and your forearms will say “no more! lactic acid out!” haha. and once you go past vertical, roofs, overhangs, etc., you gotta build core strength to keep yourself up or you’ll be dangling with just your poor arms doing the work again.

    keep trying it! as long as you have a trust worthy belayer, you have nothing to fear! (but getting sketched out is a good thing. it means you are sensible and climbing safely)

    • caitlin March 19, 2010, 10:27 pm

      i really want to get into it more!

  • Angie (Losing It and Loving It) March 19, 2010, 10:16 pm

    Looks like fun, maybe! I have never done it or not that I can recall anyway. Hubby and my stepson love to do it though.

    Have fun at Fitbloggin

  • Kristina March 20, 2010, 1:20 am

    I *love* rock climbing. Not that I’ve climbed often, maybe once every other year for the past 8 years or so. The outdoor experience is SO much more intense than climbing in a gym. Also, I love that it’s a full-body workout, not really about the arms but about legs, flexibility and everything else. I really want to learn to lead and to climb on my own – it’s on my list of “things I want to do this lifetime”.

  • Jessica @ Jessica Balances March 20, 2010, 3:16 am

    I went rock climbing once and sprained my ankle while attempting to do the “bouldering” thing (like what y’all are doing in the first three photos) – I jumped down and landed awkwardly on my right ankle, but felt fine at first because I had so much adrenaline pumping. However, after a few hours passed, my ankle was KILLING me and I have not been climbing since…

  • Kath March 20, 2010, 2:49 pm

    I used to climb a lot in college (we had a wall in the student union). It was HARD and FUN!

  • Danielle March 20, 2010, 5:24 pm

    Hey! I recently started reading your blog and love it! I am trying to lead a healthier lifestyle and you have such great ideas. Keep up the amazing work!

    • caitlin March 21, 2010, 1:12 pm

      thank you sweetie!

  • Rachel March 20, 2010, 7:13 pm

    I love rock climbing. I work as a camp counselor at a climbing camp during the summer and it is a blast!

  • Anna March 21, 2010, 11:26 am

    I love to climb, but haven’t been able to go since I moved to SC. Looking forward to moving back to Charlotte next month, they have a decent indoor climbing gym called Inner Peaks (you should check it out when you move!)

  • Tara March 22, 2010, 2:59 pm

    I did rock climbing in my High School gym class! We had an option for gym called “Adventure Ed” …it was awesome!! THere was also an intricate ropes course mounted on the gym ceiling for us to traverse…. very fun and challenging!

    Is Stef climbing without ropes in one of those pictures!?!?! SCARY!!!

Previous post:

Next post:

Healthy Tipping Point