8 Aug

Oh hi Rope Climbs. Nice to meet you.

Sure- I have climbed a rope before in CrossFit, but this came from a lot of practice and a lot of confidence. As a kid, I could never climb the rope in gym class unless it had knots in it; I was always too scared to try the un-knotted rope, and thought I would fall off at the top. One day, maybe a year or so ago, I had Dan teach me how to climb a rope after watching some girls fail on them at a competition. I didn’t want to fail at them when I had to do them. I am sure I looked like a crazy person using most of my upper body to get up the rope and from then on, I knew I needed to get more proficient at rope climbs- using my legs, not just my arms.

Yesterday, after doing CrossFit for 20 months I did my first WOD with rope climbs. They have been programmed in the past, but I couldn’t get over my fear of coming down the rope when there is a “rounds for time” workout. I always thought I would freak out, trying to get the best time, and not know what to do when it came time to climb, or worse- fall from however many feet high. This fear is real guys. I am not making this up.

Anyways, back to yesterday. The workout was 10 rounds: 1 rope climb, 2 deadlifts at 205#, and a 100m run with a 20 minute time cap. I thought this was a generous cap. I was seeing times of 14 minutes, all the way up to 18 minutes. So in my head I thought I had this in the bag to finish before the time cap. Well, I was wrong. Yes.. I have practiced rope climbs one at a time on days that I am fresh. I have never felt or realized how hard it is to climb a rope when your grip is shot, you’re all sweaty, and after about 3 climbs, your inner thighs hurt like hell, but you know you still have a few more to go. I got through 8 rounds plus one rope climb and one dead lift (so nine rope climbs total in 20 minutes). For me, I did not like my final score, but still wrote it up on the white board, sat there for a minute and then smiled- because I pushed through a fear I have had my whole life. This is the part where I really just had to leave my ego at the door and realize that damn… I just did that workout Rx, it kicked my ass, but I was proud of myself for trying something new, and pushing through a fear.

I still need work on my descent. I still need work on using my legs, and which clamping style works best. I know that there will always be things to work on. But today- I feel like just getting up and down a rope nine times is an accomplishment and I will take that as a mental PR for sure.


2 Responses to “RopeClimbs”

  1. Shelby A. August 8, 2014 at 9:17 am #

    Kyla, I love this! So often I find myself discouraged with my score, especially when looking at everyone else’s (doesn’t help that we have a gym full of awesome athletes!). This month has been especially hard since Im starting a new diet and have encountered some injuries. But this post really helped! I love seeing your determination and drive in the gym, it really keeps me going!!! Keep up the good work, maybe we can conquer rope climbs together sometime at the gym!!!

    • kylascheick August 8, 2014 at 9:28 am #

      How is the Whole 30 going? I am sure no matter what diet you are trying it will affect your workout one way or the other. Yes- I learned three new ways of clamping for rope climbs last night and used two during the workout. We can work on them together if you’d like- but we gotta build up that upper body of yours first.
      Try this to help with those pull ups: for 1 week, do 10 assisted pullups every time you are the gym and then do (1) 400m plate carry with 15# as your warm up. Then the next week switch the order- do the plate carry first, then the pull ups. This will work on both strength and grip. The week after this, I would try to see how far you can go doing a 25# plate carry (note your distance- maybe just do it in the gym so you know how many mats you go– each mat is 6ft long and 4 ft wide) and every time you do it, try to go further. After the plate carry, do as many assisted pull ups you can and then stop. Note your reps, then try for more next time. On week four, try a pull up. Just one. Let me know if you do this little program, and let me know if it works. We are gonna get that chin over the bar this year. I feel it.

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