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Killer Z 8c by Chris Weidner (44) 
 

Click to Enlarge PictureChris Weidner has done his second 8c, Killer Z in Hurricave which is a horizontal extension to an 8b. He started climbing in 1988 and did his first 8c being 40 years old. They key is hard training. (c) Lindsey Tjian

"It's an endurance route that, for me, required as much mental stamina as physical. There are a number of decent rests, but at each one I found it challenging to maintain tension with only the muscles required to stay on and to relax everything else. I used to run marathons and when I lowered from the redpoint, which took about 25 minutes, I felt like I had just crossed the finish line.

My whole life I've valued outdoor climbing much much more than indoor climbing and training. I only climbed in the gym when it was impossible to climb outside. I've changed my way of thinking, and am now putting a lot of time and energy into training. Turns out it works :)

This winter I committed to strength training for a few months. I did a repeaters cycle on the fingerboard then max hangs once or twice a week. More importantly for the Hurricave, which is often horizontal climbing, I trained core and upper body strength. For the first time since I was in high school I lifted weights. I gained a few pounds of muscle (I hope it's muscle!) but my strength to weight ratio feels higher than ever."