Mar 30 2016

Climbing Pregnant: Medical Study Results

There are two types of people: those who do their homework, and those who fly by the seat of their pants. It’ll come as no shock to any reader of this blog that I’m very much a do-my-homework kind of gal.   During pregnancy I wanted to do as much homework as possible to make sure I was doing everything "correctly." Unfortunately, the Internet is a horrible place to visit when you’re pregnant, with all of its worst-case-scenario prognoses on every site—especially if you have anxiety issues.   But what was even worse than...

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Dec 01 2015

Climbing with Kids: Hilaree O’Neill Interview

Hilaree O'Neill is one of the most well rounded mountain athletes out there. She is the first woman to climb two 8000 meter peaks in 24 hours and has continued to push the envelope with big mountain expeditions for decades. Along with being a truly inspirational athlete, she is also the mother of two young boys. She recently returned from an expedition to Makalu, where her boys joined her on the trek to basecamp. She was super kind to do an incredible and open interview on the life of a professional...

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Nov 19 2015

Climbing Pregnant: Pregnant thoughts by Janet Wilkinson

I am extremely honored to share Janet's story on this blog. She has an incredible climbing resume from alpine, to big walls to boulders. She was kind enough to share her journey and thoughts about pregnancy in an incredibly open way. I hope that you draw strength and inspiration from her words as much as I have.    For several nights I tossed and turned, unable to get comfortable, until I remembered it: the u-shaped human-sized pillow passed down from one of my done-with-pregnancy friends. I’d laughed when I saw it and stuffed...

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Oct 28 2015

Climbing, Motherhood and Body Image

When I was 16, I wanted to get breast-reduction surgery. Yes, you read that correctly. I remember sitting in the waiting room of the doctor’s office for my annual exam with my mom. “I’m going to ask the doctor to schedule the procedure," I said. My mom looked at me, smiled, and with a perfectly calm voice she said, “Okay, we’ll see what she says.”   Contrary to how it might sound, I wasn’t packing DDD breasts or had some medical condition that I needed fixed. I only had a B or...

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Oct 08 2015

Climbing With Kids: Zoe Hart Interview

I met Zoe Hart and her two adorable boys last fall in El Cap Meadow. I was just embarking my journey of being solo with a four month Theo in Yosemite for the next few months - nervous, anxious, excited and a little bit proud of myself. Zoe was on a long road trip across the United States with both of her kids, solo, living in a rented camper van. I was immediately amazed. Mattias was about two and a half and Mika almost a year. "How the heck is she doing it?" I...

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Sep 11 2015

Climbing With Kids: Climbing in Fontainebleau

I always envisioned myself becoming one of those “cool” parents. You know, the kind of parent who takes her child everywhere. The kind of parent whose child has visited more foreign countries than you can count. The kind of parent who, at the drop of a hat, could buy a ticket online, pack everything into an impossibly small duffle, and zip off on a light and fast adventure around the world. To me, those kinds of parents always seemed like the cool, groovy, relaxed people that, surely, I would be.   Being...

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Aug 12 2015

Climbing With Kids: Stevie Trujillo Interview

I met Stevie, Tree and their adorable daughter Soleil in the Yosemite boulders last spring. I was getting in a few minutes of mama bouldering time, when up walked this adorable little family. My first thought was, "Oh! I hope they are locals, new playmate for Theo!" But after a few minutes of conversation I learned that they we permanently on the road, 5 plus years and counting!   After a few more minutes I realized that meant they had their daughter on the road - holy smokes! So inspiring! They started...

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Jul 23 2015

Climbing With Kids: Sleeping and Napping Outside

Hey Beth! I have been reading your blog, (love it and am going to try the Mutu system, to fix up my ab split! thanks!) I bet you get a thousand climber/mommy questions, so I’ll skip the do you remember me, we bouldered together once… How did you get Theo to sleep at the crag? Did he sleep well? I want to get out but I’m worried he won't be able to go to sleep. He is almost 4 months...

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Jul 21 2015

Climbing With Kids: Year One

There are things about big-wall climbing that you rarely read about in magazines. Climbing through sticky, urine-stained cracks. Avoiding the fly-ridden poop that is smeared on your foot hold. And being just so tired that you clip your helmet strap into the anchor to hold your head up while you try to get a few minutes of shut eye before the strap cuts off all circulation to your head, and it’s time to climb again.   Basically, I tell my partners to count on at least one meltdown per route. And when...

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Jul 07 2015

Climbing With Kids: Anxieties in Motherhood

I've written a bit about my prolonged physical recovery from childbirth, but not as much about my battle with my many anxieties in the aftermath of Theo’s birth. Part of the reason for this avoidance is because I’m embarrassed about it all. The physical stuff—bouts of mastitis, a painful cystocele, weak joints, etc.—all seemed somehow to be out of my control. It just happened. But the mental stuff—well, shouldn’t I be strong enough, sane enough, capable enough, of controlling how I feel? I'm a professional climber, I should be in...

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