Tackling the world’s hardest climbing route requires a lot of hard work For professional climber Adam Ondra, four years of preparation and seven visits to the site to be exact. In September, Ondra finally completed the climb—in a record-setting 20 minutes.
Yes, you read that right. Ondra, who is a three-time world champion in the sport, scaled the route—Hanshelleren Cave in Flatanger, Norway—in less than a half hour, setting a world record. To give you some context, Outside Magazine compares this feat to taking a minute off the marathon world record.
“Months and months of my life summed up in 20 minutes,” he said to CNN Travel. “So much time and effort in something so short but intense as hell.”
The 24-year-old from the Czech Republic completed the 150-foot-long route—which he called “Project Hard”—in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, where rock climbing was recently added as a sport.
The cliff has a 60-degree overhang, so Ondra was essentially climbing upside down for most of the endeavor—something that requires an intense training regimen.
“Every minute spent in Norway, every move in the gym was totally worth it,” Ondra said. “This route never really turned into a nightmare, despite the time I spent on the route. It was a fun process, and it was even more fun to finish it off.”
As Mashable recently reported, Ondra had to hone his core muscles to help him get the job done, specifically his abs and obliques.
In a video he did for Epic TV, he also explained the importance of stamina and endurance, and how circuit training on the rock wall helps with this.
Having a strong core is important for everyday life—not just for rock climbing. As we’ve reported before, a strong core has benefits that reach far beyond a good-looking six-pack, like helping with posture and back pain, and even decreasing your risk of premature death.
By Danielle Zickl