Karissa Dunbar

I'm 28 years old, and have been climbing since 2002. I got started because a friend introduced me to it, and then I got a job at the local rock gym because I had lots of sales experience. They taught me all about it, and I've been addicted ever since.

Rock climbing is a very demanding sport. I'm mostly a sport climber, which to some is not as difficult as other types of climbing, but I find that I can push myself physically extremely hard in this genre. The goal in sport climbing is to really find your own physical and mental limit; how hard can you pull, how long can you hang on, how much can you push what you believe you can accomplish. I train 3-6 days a week for climbing, and train all sorts of different things. Sport climbing encompasses many different aspects of other sports-- you need the stamina of an endurance athlete, the power and explosion of a sprinter or boxer, and the mental strength of a skydiver. So you're constantly working on coordinating all these aspects of climbing, and keeping yourself safe and healthy as well. And you're hiking, and camping, and carrying heavy loads to and from the crag, so it's all pretty intense, if you are as addicted as I am.

Karissa Dunbar



We climb every weekend for most of the year, so I call myself a weekend warrior. Most weekends we drive anywhere from 2-5 hours to climb, depending on weather. I guess that means we're pretty dedicated, spending every weekend outdoors, pretty much despite the weather. I prefer to think of myself as motivated.

In climbing it's really important to combine good physical training with good nutrition. If you don't eat right and fuel your body correctly, you won't see any gains in your training. I try really hard to eat all whole foods, whole grains, organic stuff, and lots of good protein. I do use some supplements, but I try to get the majority of my nutritional needs from whole foods. That's why Primal Strips are great-- they're a quick protein packed snack, and it's not some dry powder or some nasty tasting bar. Primal Strips are awesome!