In this climbing podcast, learn techniques and strategies—and potential pitfalls to avoid—to climb your best outdoors!
You’ve been dreaming about your boulder project, route, or road trip. You’ve trained smart and hard. Your psych is high. You’re ready to crush!
So, how can you best transition from indoor training to outdoor climbing, and what can you do to perform your best on weekend outdoors or on a long trip?
In this episode, Eric presents a series of powerful tips that you can take to the send bank! He also provides awareness of the potential to self-sabotage, something that even the most experienced climber can succumb to.
0:15 – Opening comments: I missed you!
2:58 – Introduction to this episode on climbing tips and strategies for optimal performance on weekend trips and on longer road trip
4:06 – A few brief comments about the challenging and, at times, tumultuous events of the past few months…
7:56 – Eric’s philosophy about the power of climbing—it brings us together!
9:30 – Tips, topics, and techniques to help you reach your climbing goals this season…as a weekend warrior and on a longer road trip.
10:22 – How to properly taper your training in the days leading up to your outdoor climbing. “Tapering” ahead of a weekend trip is much different than doing a proper training taper ahead of a month-long road trip. Learn the details so that you get it right—a proper taper is hugely important for climbing your strongest!
14:10 – When you arrive at your destination crag…what’s the best climbing approach on the first few days? Should you go straight to your project…or should you spend a few days adjusting and acclimating to the outdoor climbing location?
18:00 – On longer trips, most climbers experience a “peak” during the first 1 to 3 weeks of the trip…but they then experience a gradual decline in maximum strength and power with each additional week removed from your training.
19:15 – Why pro climbers often limit climbing trips to one month.
19:29 – Comments about Alex Megos sending Bibliographie, the world’s second 5.15d/9c route. CONGRAT ALEX!
20:40 – How as a weekend warrior you can best schedule climbing trips and find the training-and-climbing “rhythm” that best serves you. Plan several months ahead on a paper calendar…this way you can better see the training blocks and travel dates.
22:06 – On a long trip, how many days in a row can you climb? How many days per week is it best to climb? Answer: It depends on many variables…which I’ll describe.
23:53 – Learn why a significant number of climbers return from a road trip with a tweak or more significant injury. Learn how you can avoid “walking off the cliff” of sudden, debilitating injury.
26:26 – Specific tips for optimizing recovery and lowering injury risk while on a climbing trip.
28:28 – Learn how to wrap up a long road trip and transition back into training at home. Should you take a break from training for a few days or more?
32:50 – Post-trip, most climbers will need a 2- to 4-week training block to regain top-end finger strength and power.
33:40 – About self-sabotage…it’s happened to me…and I’m sure to you as well at some point. Let’s unpack a few common scenarios for self-sabotage.
34:24 – Self-Sabotage #1: “Flinching” on the first day working a near-limit project route. TRUST THE PROCESS! Don’t give up too fast.
37:55 – However, don’t over-reach too far…and get bogged down for many days (or weeks) on a single route. Don’t allow your climbing trip to turn into a suffer-fest. Try to balance days of sending (sub-max routes) with days of projecting on near-limit routes.
40:00 – Self-Sabotage #2: Not doing an appropriate warm-up…and rushing to get on your project boulder or route too fast. You can NOT climb your best without a proper warm-up that turns on your nervous system, ignites your climbing-specific aerobic system, lubricates your tendons and joints, and readies your generalize aerobic/CV system. Learn how to do it right!
43:50 – Self-Sabotage #3: Not eating right. Consuming adequate protein and carbohydrates is essential to climbing your best, keeping energy levels ups, recovering optimally, and lowering injury risk. Learn how to keep your power-to-weight ratio up and accelerate recovery on a road trip. Read more about the protein needs of a hard-training strength/power athlete like you!
49:09 – Some meal suggestions and tips for breakfast, snacks, and dinner. What’s a common breakfast food of many top climbers? Find out!
50:10 – How many calories do you likely need for bouldering and sport climbing…and on a sedentary rest day? (Big wall and mountain climbers have a much higher daily caloric need than climbers doing stop-and-go bouldering and sport climbing.)
52:06 – Eric’s closing—and powerful—comments about setting big goals, pursuing them energetically, and stacking the odds in your favor. You must believe that “what you want, wants you”! Then take daily action and resist the ways (and traps) of the masses. Find your own unique life path, and enjoy your journey.
54:54 – What’s the secret sauce that makes for unique and amazingly pro climbers like Tommy Caldwell, Margo Hayes, and many others (I can’t name them all!)? Listen, learn, model, plot, course correct, and never give up!
55:55 – The importance of avoiding the traps of the common man…
59:19 – There are a LOT of things that determine climbing performance—the more puzzle pieces you can put together, the better you will become!
1:00:00 – Please check out and support T4C podcast sponsor PhysiVantage. Research-based, athlete-proven performance nutrition for climbers–use checkout code PODCAST15 to save 15% off full-price items. Used by a growing number of pro climbers and thousands of recreational climbers around the world. Give PhysiVantage a try, and feel the difference it makes in your climbing!
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Music by: Misty Murphy
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