Podcast on Personalized Nutrition for Peak Climbing Performance

If you're serious about training and climbing your best, then you must be serious about performance nutrition. The foods you consume play a central role in energy production, training adaptations, muscle recovery, connective tissue health, and your strength-to-weight ratio. Combined, these nutritional influences are nearly as significant as the influence of your training program--and, if you get both your training and nutrition right, then a powerful synergy will elevate your performance to a new level!

  • Subscribe on iTunes (or other podcast player) to "Eric Hörst's Training For Climbing" podcast. You can also listen to the T4C podcast on Stitcher and Spotify! Please write a review on iTunes!


00:40 – Intro to performance nutrition. Why it's important. 4:16 - As a guiding principle, climbers should "eat and train" not "diet and exercise." 5:19 - A short story about an upcoming elite climber... 6:40 - One of my favorite sayings...and a powerful guiding principle: "To outperform the masses you must do things they don't do." 7:00 - Pro tip: Eschew group think. Live by your own light. Build your own optimal system to reach your goals.

9:10 - Performance nutrition must be personalized. Many factors are at play...so it will take some effort to get it right. 15:45 - Nutrition is not a black & white topic. There are few "never eat" foods--enjoying rich foods is one of life's great pleasures. Moderation and discipline are critical, however. 20:15 - Climbing is a strength-to-weight and power-to-weight ratio sport. Therefore, bodyweight is a critical factor and it should be optimized via smart training and nutrition. Caloric restriction may be valuable leading up to periods of performance climbing or competition. 24:15 - Your training and nutrition must be shaped to match your goals. The guidance of a veteran trainer and climbing-knowledgeable nutritionist can be invaluable.

26:30 - Definition of "high-quality weight loss" -- this is the goal for elite climbers wanting to maximize performance. 27:30 - How to best create a slight caloric deficit to optimize body composition before competition or performance climbing. 28:50 - High-quality protein is essential for maintaining muscle mass, strength, and power during periods of hard training and/or caloric restriction. The protein requirement is 1.2 to 1.6 grams/kg of body weight per day. Supplementary protein, ideally a high-quality whey isolate, is often necessary to meet this goal while restricting calories.

30:30 - The importance of leucine, especially in your post-exercise feeding. 31: 08 - Carbohydrate backloading as a powerful performance nutrition and recovery strategy. 34:00 - The value of post-exercise and bedtime whey protein isolate and/or micellar casein. Vegans should consider a pea protein supplement powder.

34:30 - Eric weights in on "fad diets"...low carb, keto, paleo, high carb, etc. 36:00 - The importance of adequate carbohydrates for power- and strength-endurance athletes such as climbers. 38:00 - Eric's recommended macronutrient ratio...approximately 60% carbohydrates, 20% protein, and 20% fat.

39:23 - Eric's pyramid paradigm for healthy eating for peak performance. A balanced diet is the pyramid base, while sport-specific nutrition and supplements form the pyramid top. 41:54 - Regarding sports supplements--if you're eating right, then you may get added benefits from certain supplements. 43:30 - Eric briefly mentions the company he founded--PhysiVantage makes the first research-based supplements for climbers. 44:16 - What supplements might work for climbers? 44:30 - Post-workout/post-climbing protein can jump start and accelerate muscle and connective tissue recovery. 45:00 - BCAAs may have some value in a performance setting, but as a regular training aid there could be unintended consequences that may compromise muscle quality and performance in the long run.

47:00 - The importance of increasing muscle quality and muscle efficiency over the long term--this is the pathway to stronger more powerful muscles without gaining weight. 50:00 - What about creatine for climbers? Micro-doses may benefit, but creatine "loading" will likely hurt performance. 53:40 - Anti-oxidants (e.g. vitamin C, E, selenium) may limit the hormetic response to training and potentially reduce desired training adaptations in the long run.

56:45 - Supplements to "prime" the aerobic energy system and increase oxygen kinetics have great promise. Beetroot extract and citrulline malate will likely enhance climbing performance and recovery between bouts of high-intensity exercise. 1:01:00 - What about caffeine? 1:02:30 - Anaerobic lactic system buffers, beta alanine and sodium bicarbonate, have some potential benefits. 1:06:10 - Is a daily multivitamin helpful? What about minerals? 1:07:00 - A chunk of dark chocolate eaten each day has health and performance value. Seriously!

1:08:30 - The benefits of vitamin-C-enriched hydrolyzed collagen for climbers. Supporting connective tissue health is essential for hard-training for climbers. 1:09:32 - A few supplements that don't work are... 1:12:00 - Conclusion and closing comments on nutrition for climbers 1:13:00 - Do you value this free podcast? Please share with a friend!


    • Subscribe on iTunes (or other podcast player) to "Eric Hörst's Training For Climbing" podcast. You can also listen to the T4C podcast on Stitcher and Spotify! Please write a review on iTunes!