FEATURED SPONSOR // albion fit + my fitness routine pt. 1

Even saying that I have a fitness routine is kind of weird.  Up until last fall I never considered myself someone "into" fitness, and still I don't think I'd say that about myself.  I prefer to incorporate fitness into my life in ways that don't involve going to a normal gym.  In high school I was a competitive equestrian, and then in college I took fitness classes like pilates, ballet, ice skating, and weight training on a regular basis.  Nowadays during the summers I like to use my bike as my main mode of transportation, and I started rock climbing last January.

I've been the same size since like 8th grade, and (so far) I've never needed to workout in order to lose weight/maintain my same weight, so my fitness routine isn't weight related, it has more to do with wanting to treat my body right and be healthy and strong.  And hopefully I'll be more likely to survive the zombie apocalypse.  But really, I like feeling strong.  I'm a pretty small person barely breaking 5'1" and I always like to prove people wrong who assume I'm weak just because I'm small.  I've always been pretty strong for my size, and I like doing things that require strength and endurance.

We climbed multiple times a week last year from January to June, but we stopped climbing for a few months starting in June because of my job.  I'm super excited about climbing this year.  Last year I had just started climbing and was figuring out technique and working on getting stronger, and we only climbed outdoors once.  This year I'm climbing stronger than I ever did last year and I'm super motivated to get out of the gym and go climbing outdoors a few times this summer.

Climbing, for me, is such a perfect way to workout and get stronger.  Its so easy to see yourself getting better as you're able to climb more difficult routes and find routes that used to be difficult for you get easier.  And there's a physical end goal every time you climb a route: get to the top.  I can see the top.  I can see how to get there.  I just have to be strong enough physically and mentally to achieve that goal.

A lot of girls seem to be shy or nervous about getting into climbing because they think they don't have the upper body strength necessary, but ironically this is what tends to make girls figure out good technique more quickly.  Guys tend to think that all it takes to climb is doing pull-ups all the way up the wall, but this is an extremely inefficient way to climb, and in terms of proper technique, that's not the right way to climb.  If you've wanted to climb but thought you were too weak in your upper body, don't let that stop you!  Technique and using your whole body is much more important for climbing than having super buff biceps (though that can be an advantage at times).  And that's one thing that makes climbing a great workout.  You work your whole body.  Sure you work your arms, but the core work is also incredible, and you're working muscles you probably didn't even know you had!  Some climbing gyms also have an area with other gym stuff like treadmills and weights, and my climbing gym also offers yoga, pilates, cycling and other fitness classes.  So it's like having access to a regular gym, but you get to climb too!

In terms of fitness attire, I think my aesthetic/needs tend towards the yoga-wear end of the spectrum.  For climbing I really need a top that allows for lots of movement and bottoms that do the same and also aren't see through.  Because I'm doing lots of squat-like movements and other crazy moves trying to reach for holds the last thing I want to worry about is onlookers getting a peek at my undies through my leggings.  So flexibility and opacity are really the most important things to me when it comes to bottoms, which is surprisingly hard to find, at least for a low price tag.

Albion Fit sent me their Love Racer, Go Long Crew, and Optimum Capris to try out and for climbing, those three pieces are great.  I don't like looking super fitnessy when I'm climbing, because most people are super casual and many are even climbing regular clothes like jeans. I absolutely love the Go Long Crew and it might just be the softest item of clothing I've ever put on my body. It's thin enough that it breathes and I don't feel like I have to yank it off mid climbing session in a sweaty panic, but it's also surprisingly opaque.  I wear my orange Love Racer underneath, which is pretty bright, and you can barely see it.  And the capris?  Totally pass the climbing test.  According to Dan (since I can't really see my own ass while I'm climbing), no undies showing through.  They do have a bit of a gap at my waist, but I think I should've sized down.  I'm usually not a fan of capri leggings that flare out at the bottom, but these don't have too much of a flare and don't flap around on my calves, which is what drives me nuts.

And obviously I like that Albion is a company that values sustainability and the planet by recycling plant waste and using earth friendly materials in their products as well as following fair labor practices with their employees and business partners.  Good workout clothes, good company practices.  Good stuff in my book.

photos of me by Dan