Girl Crush of the Month: Chelsea Rude

Check out that lock off! Photo: Francois Lebeau

You can never use your negative ape index as an excuse again. Why? Chelsea Rude. With a -3 ape index her nickname is T-Rex, but that hasn’t stopped her one bit. As Chelsea puts it, “Don’t make excuses. Get up and go make your dreams a reality.”

Focused on comps.

At the age of 26, she has been climbing for 17 years. Chelsea entered her first climbing competition when she was 11 and continued on to Nationals for many years to follow. Chelsea was motivated by competition and training for specific events. “My goals were to stand on the podium, or make finals, or finish top 15; all of which were (and still are) out of my control and not very good goals. I kept a training calendar, which I followed religiously and felt extreme guilt if I skipped a specific workout.  So that calendar kept me from climbing outside on beautiful weekend days…”

Trying hard in Ceuse, France. Photo: Jensen Walker

In the past couple of years Chelsea has shifted her climbing goals, from competition-based performance to pushing her limits outside.  “At the beginning of the training season for ABS, I made a training calendar and taped it on my wall in my room.  But I haven’t followed it a single day…I trained what I felt like I needed, not what a schedule told me to.  I FELT every training day and I ENJOYED it.  And I climbed outside when I wanted if time permitted.”

Chelsea just wrapped a trip to Ceuse, France. In reflecting on her trip she said, “France was refreshing; outside all day, bloody fingers, chalked face, great friends, exhaustion and a full heart.” This spirit captures why we all (whether pro-climber or weekend warrior) spend our precious time and effort dedicated to climbing outside.


Chelsea taking her training to the rocks.

We’re crushing on Chelsea because of her passion for adventure, willingness to push her limits, and for totally being fearless. Plus her words of wisdom make her wise beyond her years. “It’s refreshing to stop and think about where you are and where you want to go and how to connect those dots.”

Thanks for the inspiration, Chelsea!

Sources: Chelsea’s blog, La Sportiva athlete page and Chelsea’s instagram.

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