I’ve tried outdoor rock climbing once before in Alaska, but never indoor rock climbing. The first time I tried rock climbing I really struggled, so I we nervous to try it a second time. Surprisingly, I did quite well. I also enjoyed it immensely and can’t wait to do it again. I think training at a Crossfit box for over a year definitely helped me with the strength, endurance, and mobility components of rock climbing. I started off on the beginner wall (with a rating of “0”, or the most basic) literally climbing alphabet letters. Shockingly, I got to the top and reached “Z” in no time. After a short rest, I was challenged to try a wall rated at 5.6. To my surprise, I reached the top after a couple short breaks on the way up! I have no idea how I went from the baby wall to actually rock climbing a “real” wall.
Planet Granite in San Francisco is located in the heart of the Presidio with an incredible view of the Golden Gate Bridge. The gym offers 25,000 square feet of climbing and bouldering (not yet at my level) terrain. I was wonder struck walking around the gym admiring the skill of other climbers.The walls in the gym are rated from 5.0 (easy), starting at the alphabet wall, to 5.15 (most difficult) with rope climbing and bouldering (rope free). Due to the fact that I am completive, I wanted to challenge myself further by attempting a wall rated 5.7. With my cousin belaying me from below, she encouraged me as I went up the rock wall. I made it to the top with determination (and a few mid-breaks along the way), although I did cheat a little by using a few nearby 5.6 foot holds to support me along the way when the 5.7 holds were too far out of grasp. It was an incredible learning experience. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and was successful.
I’m glad I didn’t let my pervious experience of rock climbing prevent me from trying it a second time. When I first tried it, I was glad that I tried it, but didn’t think it was for me. I really thought that I wouldn’t do it again. One of those once in a lifetime experiences, but not again type experiences. I’m glad I overcame my hesitation to try it again, because I fell in love with indoor rock climbing. I wish there was a rock climbing gym close to where I live. I could really see myself going regularly. If I hadn’t of given it a try I would never have known that I loved it. I’m so proud of myself! I hope to continue to pushand challenge myself to try new things throughout my travels over the next 11 months. May the journey continue.
“All the bright and precious things fade so fast…” The Great Gatsby, 2013