Climbing to New Heights
Hometown: Malibu, CA
Occupation: Business co-owner
Like many people fighting the effects of aging, Julie Tobias was determined not to let the onslaught of passing birthdays keep her from adventure. She skied steeper slopes than she’d ever attempted in her youth and fell in love with the rush of ice climbing in her early 40s.
In 2006, while skiing Austria's back country, Tobias' guide pointed out a particularly long, interesting, and challenging route. When she inquired if they could take the path, the guide told her she wasn’t fit enough to do more than half of the course.
“It was like a knife in the gut!” Tobias says. “Right then and there, I decided to never let a lack of fitness get in the way of my aspirations or goals.”
For the next few years, she continued to ski and enjoy her trips. She enrolled in classes and hired trainers to help her get fit and healthy, but nothing really gave her the power or confidence she was looking for. And with her love of skiing and climbing in remote locations, Tobias realized if she were ever to be injured on one of her adventures, it'd be difficult for rescuers to save her.
Three years later, Tobias decided to check out the Core Performance Center in Santa Monica on the recommendation of her son’s doctor. Upon seeing it, she immediately decided to sign up and prepare for her next ice climbing trip.
For the next three months, Tobias worked out at the Core Performance Center on a daily basis. While she considered herself relatively fit, she worked on pushing her cardio, while refining her stability and improving upper-body strength. Her efforts paid off more than she had realized.
In early 2010, Tobias traveled to the remote location of Icefall Brook in British Columbia. The location meant they had to be dropped by helicopter, and to her surprise, she had to do all of her touring on her skis.
Once she arrived at her location, her guide told her they would be leaving behind their ski boots (which allow you to flex forward and ski uphill) and skiing in their climbing boots instead. “With no support in the boots, skiing is tough, but the single-leg work I had done paid off,” Tobias, says.
When it came time to climb the 42-degree slopes, Tobias was impressed with the strength and ease with which she climbed in the harsh conditions. “We did seven ascents, and I know I wouldn’t have had the success I did without the training at the Core Performance Center,” she says.
About The Author
Tia Albright – Tia Albright is Associate Editor of CorePerformance.com. She joined Athletes' Performance in 2009 from The Knot.