Alex Honnold : how this climber stays fueled and limits his dietary impact

alex honnold-climbing wall eating staying healthy

Alex Honnold has become a name highly recognized both within and beyond the climbing community. But behind Honnold’s seemingly audacious exterior, is just a typical human who approaches everyday tasks, like meal-prep and staying fueled.

We were curious to hear how he keeps his energy levels strong while maintaining this food philosophy. And also charging some of the craziest climbs out there. Here’s what he told us.

What are your core beliefs and philosophies about food, and why?

Alex Honnold : I try to minimize the environmental impact of my food – that’s probably the guiding principle. So, mostly that means eating a vegetarian or occasionally vegan diet. But I’m always trying to think through my choices and do the least harm. Sometimes that might mean eating meat if it would otherwise go to waste, or depending on where I am.

Alex Honnold eating Black-Diamond-April-Fools
Black Diamond and Alex Honnold strike again in their ongoing April Fools’ shenanigans

How has climbing influenced the way you eat and think about food?

Alex Honnold : Climbing has definitely made me more mindful about diet. After all, I have to carry everything I eat up every mountain. Literally and figuratively – meaning the food I’ve eaten and the food that I’m carrying.

I try not to eat too much because I don’t want to haul around more weight than I need. But at the same time, I need to fuel a fair amount of exercise. In general, climbing has made me more connected to the environment, which is why I care about my dietary footprint.

Alex Honnold training climbing gym

Do you change up what you eat depending on the type of climb you are about to do?  What does a typical meal before climbing look like?

Alex Honnold : Not too much. I try to eat just about the same all the time. But I’m also climbing year-round so my diet is pretty stable. Right now, I’ve been making big breakfast smoothies that keep me full when I go to the crag.

What does your essential grocery short list consistently look like every week, and why?

Alex Honnold : Lots of fruits and vegetables. Plants are definitely the most frequently purchased things at the store. I eat plants in every meal, so they add up.

Alex Honnold, what is your favorite go-to snack?

Alex Honnold : At the crag, I typically eat a bell pepper and an apple every day. I love just eating a bell pepper like an apple.

bell-peppers-assorted- alex honnold favorite go to snack climbing

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