Progression: An Ode to White Pine

by Chris Healy

I first started with White Pine back in November. When you sign up, you go through an assessment to figure out where you’re weak and where you're strong. As a climber, I was primarily only concerned with a few areas, pulling strength being the main one. But since climbing is a full body sport, Kyle still made me go through the full assessment. Concerning my pulling ability, I could only do 11 pull-ups and maxed out at adding 75 pounds to my body weight for a single rep. This may sound like quite a bit, but as a climber at my level it really wasn’t. Or maybe I just thought I should be doing more. In either case, I went to work.

Photo: Austin Tucker

Photo: Austin Tucker

Kyle scheduled started me off at one heavy pulling workout a week. I soon told him I wanted to do it twice a week, so we started doing that. A few weeks into this, he increased the weight I was doing. This is something I didn't ask for and which I was also skeptical of at first. I was already doing something that felt pretty dang maximal! A few days later, I did the same workout again. It felt much better that day, and I continued with it for the rest of the training cycle.

Photo: George Bruce Wilson

Photo: George Bruce Wilson

A few weeks ago, I re-tested and was blown away by the results. I was able to 18 pull-ups, and add 110 pounds to my body weight for my 1 rep max! I expected improvement, but I did not expect this much improvement. While I haven't broken into a new grade (yet), I can tell in my climbing that I’m much stronger. I'm confident that when my fingers are back to 100% that I will break into that next level, and I attribute this to the training I’ve done with White Pine. The rampage is coming, all I need is a little bit a patience at this point.


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