Relive Will Gadd’s Historic 2015 Frozen Niagara Falls Climb

Pro ice climber Will Gadd has made some incredible ascents over the years. From exploring the Colorado Rockies, the glaciers of Greenland, and the mountains of Kilimanjaro, Gadd has climbed frozen terrains all around the world. But one of his most memorable climbs wasn’t in a remote area—it was at one of the most recognizable natural sights in the world: Niagara Falls.

Back in 2015, Gadd made the first-ever ice climb up Niagara Falls. Working alongside the New York State Parks Department, Gadd was able to get the first-ever permit for ice-climbing at the site, where he planned to climb it naturally, meaning no bolts on the ice while he climbed. Gadd set up his line on the American side of the falls on Terrapin Point, which rises up around 150 feet from bottom-to-top.

Gadd, a Red Bull athlete and an accomplished paraglider, collaborated with Red Bull Media House, which produced the documentary Frozen Falls that followed his trek up the falls. (You can watch the documentary here.)

“It’s one of the most visited places in North America. We have to treat it as a jewel, or it won’t work,” Gadd said to Red Bull while planning the climb. “The massive water flow constantly shakes the ground, and makes the ice shelves and walls around you unsteady and unpredictable. It’s a harsh environment and an intense challenge to stay attached to the wall, let alone climb it.”

In January 2020, Gadd is celebrating the fifth anniversary of his ascent, which is why we wanted to spotlight the accomplishment.

Here’s a look at Gadd making the climb:

Gadd, who is celebrating the fifth anniversary of his ascent in 2020, previously spoke with Men’s Journal about how he prepares and trains climbs like this one, revealing some of his favorite workouts, essential gear he takes along the way, as well as advice for fellow climbers.

“For climbing, it’s about developing your shoulders and applying strength so you can climb better,” Gadd said. “There are a solid four or five exercises I do regularly that are critical for being functional. My main exercises are some kind of squat or squat variation, pullups are big for climbing and they help a lot, and also some version of a push movement, whether that’s pushups or doing the bench press. Deadlifts are also very important. Those basic moves are critical for me. You can do them almost anywhere.”

Gadd also left readers with a key piece of advice: “Travel with hot sauce,” Gadd said. “Most food can be boring [tasting] when you’re out on these remote trips and having some Louisiana-style hot sauce is a life saver. Nothing fancy, but it gives you that extra flavor when you’re having so much camp food, like your third plate of canned peas or canned food. Hot sauce is critical.”

Here are a few more incredible photos of Gadd making the climb:

Will Gadd ice climbs the first ascent of Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015.
Will Gadd ice climbs the first ascent of Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015. Christian Pondella/Red Bull Content Pool
Will Gadd ice climbs the first ascent of Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015.
Will Gadd ice climbs the first ascent of Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015. Christian Pondella/Red Bull Content Pool
Will Gadd ice climbs the first ascent of Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015.
Will Gadd ice climbs the first ascent of Niagara Falls in Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015. Christian Pondella/Red Bull Content Pool
Will Gadd and Sarah Hueniken hugs each other folllowing their first ascents, during Red Bull Frozen Falls at Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015.
Will Gadd and Sarah Hueniken hugs each other following their first ascents, during Red Bull Frozen Falls at Niagara Falls, NY, USA on 27 January, 2015. Keith Ladzinski / Red Bull Content Pool

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The Ugly Truth About Diet and Exercise

Jillian addresses the latest media frenzy surrounding her comments regarding Lizzo. Plus, everyone jumped on Dr. Oz when he recently said you can skip breakfast, so what does that really mean in terms of Intermittent Fasting? And questions about planking, protein powders, and more!

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How to Read a Nutrition Label

Nevertheless, being aware of what you’re putting in your body (and how much) is important. So buckle up! We’re going for a ride to Labeltown (it’s like Funkytown, only more educational).

Break it down

    1. Serving size – the first thing you want to look at is the serving size, and how many servings are in the container. I used to think that the serving size for Oreos was “one package.” Turns out it’s two cookies. Clearly you can see my discrepancy.
    2. Caloric Content – trying to watch your weight? Watch your calories! Essentially, this part of the label tells you how much energy you’re taking in. It also tells you how much of that energy is coming from fat.
    3. The Nutrients – this part of the label clues you in on macro-nutrients (fat and protein), vitamins, minerals, and fiber. The left side of the column lists the nutrient (e.g. Iron, total fat, fiber), and the right side of the columns lists the percentage of the recommended daily value (%DV) for that nutrient.

Too Much

Generally speaking, most Americans consume too much of the following nutrients:

    • Total fat
    • Saturated fat
    • Cholesterol
    • Sodium
    • Protein

Not Enough

We want to work on getting more of these:

    • Fiber
    • Mono and polyunsaturated fat
    • Iron
    • Vitamins A and C

One thing to keep in mind when talking about Daily Value percentages is these percentages are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. So, if you’re daily calorie budget is 1,500, the percentages will be higher for you.

So there you have it! The nutrition label, decoded. Now, if anyone can tell me why un-popped popcorn is listed on a nutrition label…that would solve one of life’s mysteries for me.

What nutrient boggles your mind?

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ACE Insight | New Year, New You! Professional Development Goals for 2020

Turning the page to the new year (and new decade) is always an exciting time for health and exercise professionals. Not only do we get to hear and be a part of the goals our clients and participants are setting, but it also provides an opportunity to reflect and plan for our personal and professional growth.

We asked thousands of health and exercise professionals what they are looking to take on this next year, and their answers might surprise you. Instead of the answers you might expect topping the lists, such as mastering a new format or setting personal physical achievement goals, we heard about philanthropic hopes, behavior-change education and inclusivity dreams. The responses were both heartwarming and hopeful.

Here are the three biggest themes for professional development among your peers in the New Year:

Giving back. Health and exercise professionals are searching for ways to give back. While teaching in exchange for pay and a gym membership is rewarding, many people are finding ways to take their gifts to underserved communities, including prisons, schools, faith-based centers, neighborhoods and more. Could you spare one hour a month (or even a quarter) to put together a class or training session for those that might not be able to attend due to geography or finances? If we’re hoping to get people moving, it’s important we find ways to take our services outside of the four walls of a traditional fitness facility, directly to those who need it most.

Updating cueing. Instructors and trainers are increasingly aware that words matter. We’re constantly striving for the best language to describe what we want to see, what we want our clients to feel and the perfect cue for adjustments in technique. This year, however, we also see health and exercise professionals looking to update their language to remove stigma and build inclusivity. How can we cue to better accommodate a wide range of fitness levels and, more importantly, fitness goals? Not everyone is looking to be bigger, stronger or faster. Instead of leveling up or down, can we find phrases and statements to make all options accessible and equally attractive without attaching any value? As we strive to get more people involved in fitness, we’ll have to redefine what that looks like and how we teach.

Incorporating mind into the movement. The past decade has seen significant growth in mind/body disciplines such as yoga, tai chi and Pilates. While these formats are still strong in popularity, this year we’re hearing more about how habits, mindset and behavior change must be reflected in all of our classes and training sessions. Whether group fitness, small group or personal training, behavior change is at the forefront of educational upgrades for 2020. We are finally starting to realize that, as health and exercise professionals, we are a bit unique in our love of sweat and spandex. We must learn new ways to help others find joy in movement (versus seeing it as a chore). Topping the list of goals for the New Year is obtaining specialty certificates in behavior change or adding health coaching to your certifications as a way to fill your toolbox to make it happen.

Whether the goals above have inspired you or you have big dreams of your own in 2020, we trust you have ideas in mind for how you will grow this year. Here are a few ways to organize and prioritize that list to make this the best year yet:

Look to make an immediate impact. Prioritize one part of your professional development goal that would be immediately impactful. This is something that is easy to learn, easy to implement and will have the greatest impact. For example, if you chose updating your cueing from the list above, perhaps you could audit your cueing and find one phrase to eliminate, one phrase to continue and one phrase to start using that would help all exercisers find success.

Aim for short-term success. Next, choose one part of your goal that you can accomplish within two to three months. This might take a bit more planning and energy, but nothing you can’t handle in the nooks and crannies of your time. Perhaps, if choosing from above, it’s completing a short continuing education course on behavior change and incorporating what you’ve learned into your current teaching or training.

Go on a vision quest. Finally, it’s important to always have something on the horizon to stretch you—something that is just outside your reach that requires planning and perseverance. If you’re following along with one of the three most prevalent themes for 2020, perhaps it’s investing in becoming an ACE Behavior Change Specialist or studying to sit for the Health Coach Certification, adding your newly earned skill set to your list of offerings.

Finally, you know better than anyone the importance of accountability. Find another health and exercise professional and let them know what your plans are for this New Year. Be specific with what you’re hoping to accomplish and in what timeframe. Speaking your truth into the world will get you one step closer to accomplishing your goals for 2020. Best of luck to you as you continue to get people moving. We’re with you!

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The Benefits of Change: New Year, New Role?

By Shona Mulligan, Talent Scout at Runtastic

As the clock strikes 12, we party our way in 2020 and start to reflect on the year just gone. For many, it’s a time to celebrate new beginnings and wonder what might be in store for the year to come. New year, new me? This must sound familiar, plenty of us are guilty of promising ourselves that this year we will achieve the goals we swore we would accomplish in 2019. In order to give all of yourself to your goals this year, first it’s important to truly understand the positive impact change can have, no matter how big or small, on your life. At Runtastic, we embraced change and faced challenging times with positivity, finishing 2019 on a high. Once you realize how beneficial change can be, it’ll be a hell of a lot easier to push through when your motivation is low or when you’re facing challenging times.

Perhaps many of us have already started working on our personal goals, but what about our professional goals? Do you dream of having more responsibility or more exciting tasks in your day-to-day role? Change things up! Change can be just as beneficial in our professional life as it can in our personal life. Perhaps 2020 is the year to focus on your professional development?

Ensure you take time to first reflect on where you are currently and think about where you would like to be this time next year – what needs to change in order to achieve your professional goals? Does your company have career development options in place to allow you to change your role? What training can you do to improve your skills? Should you network more? These are the important questions to ask when thinking about change. 

Reach out to your manager or your HR department to find out how you can change your role at your current company. Take time to create a plan detailing how you can achieve these changes, whether it’s taking on more responsibility or changing your role completely. Making changes in our professional life will help us to grow further, open us up to many different opportunities and will allow us to gain different perspectives.

Before you plan, execute, and achieve your professional goals for this year, check out our top 5 benefits of change.


1. Change helps you grow

We all have our comfort zones, routines, and habits. Sometimes life can seem easier when we spend most of our time in this bubble. Doing things the same way every day may seem like a convenient way of getting things done, however, by doing things this way we are restricting ourselves, especially our personal growth. In order to grow, we need to jump out of our comfort zones and embrace change with open arms. The more open we are to change, the more likely we are to learn new things, develop our current skills, and invest more time in things we want to do. Celebrating change can allow you to grow on many personal levels, how far you grow is up to you!

2. Change creates room for opportunities

Shaking up the status-quo and accepting change will open many doors. As we open ourselves up to change, we also open ourselves up to more opportunities. This allows us to dive more fully and fearlessly into life and experience everything life has to offer; we no longer shy away from new experiences out of fear or resistance to change. Change allows us to experience more (and even have more fun!). At Runtastic, we are agents of change and we encourage change in order to make positive impacts all over the world.

3. Change makes you more flexible and adaptable

Being open to change doesn’t happen overnight; it can be quite scary and can take certain adjustments to fully allow change into your life. Each time we rise to a challenge and adjust successfully to a change, we learn how to be more adaptable each and every time. Flexibility and adaptability are traits that can benefit our personal and professional lives, allowing us to face challenging situations with an adaptable mindset, meaning we are ready for whatever impediments stand in the way of achieving our goals.

4. Change gives us a fresh perspective

With change comes new experiences! New experiences allow us to see things for the first time with fresh eyes; full of curiosity and questions. This allows us to change how we approach thinking about certain situations, experiences, people…the list goes on. Once we gain this fresh perspective we can reflect on past experiences and perhaps gain different insights into situations and ourselves.

5. Change makes you resistant

Change is inevitable and sometimes can be abrupt, unexpected, and difficult to digest. At times change puts us to the test. However, once we learn to embrace change in our day-to-day lives, facing change in difficult times will become easier and we will be more likely to succeed. The more resilient we are when faced with difficult changes, the stronger we become in the end!

Ready for Change? 

Sometimes however, bigger changes are needed to achieve our goals, and at times it turns out that your current employer’s culture and opportunities won’t fit with what’s important to you and your career development. Before you decide to jump ship and start a new adventure with a new company, it’s important to research the company in detail – will this new company help me achieve my professional goals? Is there employee training available? Is there a culture of embracing change? Did you answer “yes” to these questions? Maybe we are the change you are looking for in 2020 – check out our career website where you can find more information on what it’s like to work at Runtastic.


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Start from where you are right now

Start from where you are right now

Focus on where you are, with what you have with what you can do right now…

Vision and where you are HEADED is great BUT when you get overwhelmed by ALL the steps in front of you or why you CAN’T this is the simplist way to START.

Do what you can right now with what and how you can.

START FROM WHERE YOU ARE pinterest thumbnailSmall steps towards your focus every day reaches goals.

You are not your circumstance
You are not your injury
You are not your bank account
You are not your current situation
You are not your past stories and events.

You ARE wherever you are putting your attention.
You are wherever you put your FOCUS
You are where you direct your energy.

The best part? It’s a CHOICE. It’s a DECISION and you can take one step forward in the direction you are headed every single day and sooner than later you will achieve what you are after.

RESULTS come from FOCUS and the habits you practice towards that focus.

Change your habits with me and start to age in reverse at 


Natalie Jill



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Strength Training Schedule

How should I break up my strength training in a week?

The post Strength Training Schedule appeared first on Under Armour.

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The Best Running Gear for Dark Roads and Trails During Short Winter Days

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Can a Higher IQ Actually Hurt You?

Jillian takes a look at changing the way we think about thinking to positively affect our decisions. Plus, sugar substitutes, and email questions about making the most out of My Fitness App.

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The Top 10 Total-Body Medicine Ball Workouts

A gym without a medicine ball is like a basketball court with no hoops, yet often they get overlooked. Medicine balls are wondrously simple tools for improving your functional fitness.

While there are plenty of medicine ball exercises to choose from, I’ve gathered my favorite 10 that can be peppered into your current routine to spice things up. You can even do them all together to complete one medicine ball-inspired workout!

1. Bicycle Kicks

There isn’t a single muscle grouping that isn’t involved in this masterpiece of a movement, although make no mistake… your abdominals are the highlight. If you’re challenged in the coordination department, then this is a great opportunity for you to improve!

How to do it: Take a V-sit position with your feet off the ground, if you’re able (feet on the ground for back issues). Take your medicine ball and pass it underneath your leg by bringing your knee towards your chest. Repeat on the other side in a figure 8 formation.

Rep count: 10-30 (each leg = 1 rep)

2. Balance Burpee

If you’re nursing any wrist injuries, sit this one out. If not, then get ready for an added bonus of balance to the traditional burpee!

How to do it: Start standing with your medicine ball before bringing it to the floor, using it as a singular handle, and jumping back with your legs into a plank position, momentarily. Jump back towards the ball, then jump straight upward before repeating the whole grueling process. If the jump is too hard on any joints, tendons, or ligaments then go through the same motions only with a step instead of a jump.

Rep count: 10-20 

3. Wall-Sit Cabbage Patches

This exercise is made exponentially better by blasting a great song through your headphones and getting lost in the music. It’s also a great way to get your legs screaming, core engaged, and shoulders fired up (if you’re in the market for such things).

How to do it: Choose your medicine ball weight, find a blank space of wall and get in a wall-sit position. Then, get your best “dad dance” going with as wide of a circle as your muscles can muster. Make sure you go both directions with your cabbage patch or else we’re never going to make it onto “So You Think You Can Dance.” That’s what we’re all here for after all, right?

Rep count: 10-20 Circles (each direction)

4. V-Sit Single Arm Balance Presses

This is another one that puts the “core” in “coordination” which, and this can’t be stressed enough, is great for helping your body operate at its fullest potential. When you incorporate balance movements into your regimen, you give love to the small stabilizers, tendons, and ligaments that make your body’s world-go-round in ways that major movements can’t. Plus, you open more neural pathways which increases your mind-to-muscle connection. Read; enhanced bodily function & decreased potential for injury.

How to do it: Revisit the V-sit position (feet up if able, feet down for back issues) and hold a medicine ball in one hand in preparation to shoulder press. Have your free arm extended all the way out to work as a counterbalance mechanism while working your core even harder. Balance the medicine ball in your hand and press all the way up. Bring it back down while maintaining your balance and repeat!

Rep count: 10-15 (each side)

5. Atlas Chops

The last of the V-sit positions, this one is the most taxing on bodies that have back problems, so unless you’ve got a good command of your core, back, and hips… consider avoiding this one. If you’re good to go, then let’s do it! The focal point is core with your arms and back getting some great sculpting by proxy.

How to do it: Maintain the V-sit pose (feet up is the hardest, feet down offers lower back support), grab your medicine ball, and bring it to the back of your neck with arms bent at the elbow. Bring the ball back in front of you and all the way down to your hip (you choose which one since you’ll be alternating) while keeping your arms bent. Repeat by bringing the ball back up and then down to the other side.

Rep count: 10-30 (each side = 1 rep)

6. Lateral Lunges w. Butterfly Elbows

Working your lateral range of motion is easy to overlook but is wise to avoid if you can help it. This is a great one for getting that side movement in not just with your legs, but your arms as well.

How to do it: Take a wide stance while holding your medicine ball against your chest. Lateral lunge all the way to one side, focusing on getting as much of a stretch on the extended leg as you can while keeping the heel flat on your anchor leg. As you lean into the leg stretch, flare your elbows all the way up to parallel with your shoulders while keeping hold of the medicine ball. As you come back up to switch to the other side with your legs, bring your elbows down. Repeat on the other side!

Rep count: 10-20 (each side)

7. Isometric Lunge Orbits

If you’ve been looking to do a wall-sit style exercise, only with lunges… look no further, the time is now.

How to do it: Get into a lunge position with your medicine ball, lunge downward, and hold at the bottom. The leg in front of you should be at a 90-degree angle (or close to it) which is perfect for you to pass the ball around your thigh, going under/over the leg. Once you’re finished with your reps, do the same thing on the other side.

Rep count:10-20 (each side)

8. Kneeling BOSU Ball Bounces

A BOSU is easiest for this one, but if you don’t have one, anything that you can balance on your knees while keeping your feet off the ground will do (folded mat, foam pads, cushions, etc.). This exercise adds a small plyometric component while sharpening your reflexes and further strengthening your infrastructure.

How to do it: Take a kneeling position on a BOSU (round side up) with your weighted ball of choice. If you’re able, keep your feet off the ground (if not, you have something to work up to). Now simply bounce the ball hard enough to bounce back up and catch it. Repeat as fast as you can while doing your best not to lose control of the ball (this may take some practice). For an added bonus, bounce the ball to your left and right. This will challenge your balance and engage your core, too.

Rep count: 10-30

9. Quadominal Extensions

This exercise will target your quads, hamstrings, and abdominals in an “outside the box” sort of way. Whichever of those three need the most work is where you’ll feel it the most.

How to do it: Lie on your back and place your medicine ball between your feet (a little weight goes a long way). Squeeze the ball between your feet and lift your legs up, maintaining a 90-degree angle at the knee and keeping your knees above your hips. Holding this position like a statue, extend your legs all the way up while holding the ball. This is one of the few times where the goal is to lock your knees out. Return the ball back down and do not let your knees sway.

Rep count: 10-15

10. Back Extension Pass

Our last endeavor involves the entirety of your back kinetic chain to assure no stone is left unturned. Although it seems simple, this exercise acts as a spotlight on areas that might get ignored more than you think. Be mindful of your neck, shoulders, back (upper and lower), core and legs as they’re all going to need to work together to get this done correctly.

How to do it: Lay on your stomach with your medicine ball about an arms-length away from your head. You can elevate your feet to get an enhanced glute/lower back squeeze but keep your feet down on the ground if the strain is too much. When you’re ready, simply roll the ball from one side of your body to the other doing your best not to let your arms drop until your allotted reps have been done.

Rep count:10-20

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