In many countries, COVID-19 restrictions are easing and hopefully, we can soon indulge our passions of adventuring in some of the spectacular regions of the world. For now, we thought we would see what some of the top climbers, mountaineers, and adventurers have been up to during this period of social distancing. We must admit our time on social media has got a little out of hand since the quarantine but it was fun to see how they were handling lockdown.
You may groan but 'quarantraining' and more specifically 'quaranclimbing' has now become a thing! As you’ll see below it seems that some of them have been literally climbing the walls [and other pieces of furniture] over the last few months.
We have no idea who Tonny Valenzuela is apart from his Instagram bio describing himself as a sports nutritionist and health coach from Barcelona, however, his video and photos of his mountaineering expedition around his kitchen were a great hit with homebound mountain climbers.
“Since you cannot do any sporting activity away from home, you have to train your imagination to simulate the mountain.” That’s the spirit, Tony!
If your Spanish is a bit rusty or you can’t be bothered with Google Translate, Tony says: “Be careful that there are fissures and places that are difficult to access. Imagination to the power.“
Next up is another crazy Mediterranean, this time, Stefano Ghisolfi from Italy. In all honesty, this is not a bad way of training if you have a strong enough table. You can check out his YouTube channel for more climbing workout videos from Stefano.
Leaving the Europeans and their furniture based shenanigans behind; you have likely heard of Melissa Arnot. Melissa was the first American woman to summit and descend Everest without oxygen and has climbed it a total of six times. She is also the co-founder of the Juniper fund that provides financial assistance to the families of local Nepalese workers who have been killed in the mountains. Head on over to our dedicated Everest Base Camp Trek page to plan your next trip in 2020/21.
Melissa has been sharing positive vibes and discussing how she has been working on her ‘quaran-tan’ hiking up a local hill. Her at-home fitness tip is that every time her toddler tells her no or runs away from her she has to do 25 squats. If you don’t have kids, we are sure this can be modified to something your partner, flatmate or family member says or does.
She says that to get through these weird times she is ‘remembering past adventures and dreaming of future ones and treating the whole experience as an expedition. Meeting each day with curiosity and resilience’.
If you need some calming words of wisdom from a woman who walks the talk and has faced some huge challenges in her time, check her out on Twitter.
So we’ve given you tables, kitchen cabinets, and words of wisdom so how about some climbing tips from Adrian Bollinger, founder of Alpenglow Expeditions, leader of over 100 international climbing expeditions and who has seven summits of Everest under his belt.
Building muscles for climbing
"Episode Eleven: Hangboard Workouts with Coach Emily"
- Finger warm-ups for 10-minutes
- 20-mins of Max finger hangs with a weight vest.
- 20 minutes of pull-ups and push-ups, starting with 1 of each and then 30-second rest, 2 of each and 30-second rest, and then so on until failure and then reverse it.
- Brutal endurance hangs are next on the agenda, 7 seconds on and 3 seconds off using the smallest hold for 25 sets.
- Rest and repeat for 20 minutes. He ends up doing 10 minutes of core strength training.
This is a workout from a professional climber so ease in slowly if you want to be able to use your hands for the rest of the week and not have them resemble claws!
British Adventurer Ant Middleton, Ex SAS and TV celebrity who summited Everest in 2018 for a reality TV show, began his quarantine with a controversial post on Instagram:
“Am I still out travelling the world? Yes. Am I still shaking hands? Yes. Am I still cuddling fans at the airport? Yes. Am I washing my hands and keeping my hygiene to a high standard as always? Yes.”
“Has my life changed? No. Am I going to let some disease, Covid-19, dictate my life? Absolutely not. Get out there, don’t change, [expletive] Covid-19!”
After a media-fuelled backlash, he repented and admitted what he said was a mistake; this was followed by some less arguable advice on how to deal with quarantine. He also shared his full-body workout with Men’s Health Magazine showing how he keeps himself in shape during COVID-19 with minimal equipment.
"Special Forces Veteran Ant Middleton's Full-Body Workout for True Strength | HIBMB | Men's Health UK"
Two flatmates in London who described themselves as ‘isolation trekkers’ climbed up and down their stairs a total of 1,100 times in 24 hours for charity, matching the height of Everest at 8848 meters. While the views aren’t as spectacular, using your stairs at home is a good way to build up cardio fitness and leg strength while preparing for future treks.
"Coronavirus: Isolation climbers' trek Mount Everest at home in less than 24 hours"
Last but not least, we will close with some advice from Swiss professional climber and caving guide Cedric Lachat:
“I advise everyone to stay at home. Sport is a passion but there are other occupations and pleasures in life. Don't be afraid to stop training for several weeks or months! Having been injured several times on several occasions, I can say that you always come back stronger afterward and above all, more motivated! Personally, not climbing is not a problem for me. Long live books and Netflix.“