Last weekend, I tried indoor rock climbing for the first time.
I knew I would like the sport, as it is a combination between physical strength, flexibility, mental toughness, creativity, and coordination.
My many months of consistent yoga practice had me feeling prepared. I entered the gym and felt like anything was possible, even as a complete newbie! The lesson only took about 10 minutes and the only thing that I got hung up on was how to tie a double knot (which by the time I did my 5th climb I think I had down!).
The three of us took turns climbing and belaying. Belaying, or being in charge of the rope and making sure the climber doesn’t fall to his or her death, is far easier than it seemed to me at first. The lightest person can easily catch the heaviest of people the way the ropes are set up.
The first couple of climbs were fun but were of the beginner type. These two built my confidence up a bit. On my third climb I stepped it up a notch and went for a more intermediate level climb. My friend Trevor who is far more experienced at climbing managed to get to the top of this one despite having to scale an inverted section of the wall! It looked hard, but I was ready for the challenge.
Scaling the inverted wall was the sticky part for sure. I had to reach above it to the flat area and grab onto a protruding rock. This was no problem. The next step is where it got tricky. I had to basically push off with my feet and reach for a rock that was a few feet above the one I was grabbing onto! Looking up at it, it seemed IMPOSSIBLE. But I KNEW it was doable, since I had seen it done before with my own eyes. So I pushed off and reached up….a HA! Got it! It literally felt like a leap of faith! I was onto the next level and to the top.
I loved the feeling of accomplishing this climb because of what it represented to me. If anything has been done before, it is a possibility for my own life. Sometimes, it may seem impossible to get to that next step in life- finishing the 10k, making an extra $1,000 a month, or losing that last 10 pounds- but in every case, it is a mental game that needs to be played.
The question often becomes, what is the mental block that is in my way that I need to clear out to get to the next step?