Performance enhancing drugs?

September 09, 2012

I know the Lance Armstrong broohaha is sooo last week, but I just came across this blog post from Cold Thistle about drugs in sport. I haven't really thought much about the use of performance enhancing drugs in alpine climbing. If there is no monetary motivation to dope (and let's face it, there's very little monetary motivation to alpine climb), then what is the motivation? Ego, "fame", bragging rights? Alpine climbing, indeed all climbing, has always been a very personal pursuit (for me and most of the people I climb with). It's hard to imagine the reasoning behind doping when what people climb ultimately doesn't really matter to anyone but them. I don't know how prevalent the kind of doping you see in cycling is in climbing, but I kind of doubt it is prevalent at all. Certainly caffeine, alcohol, marijuana, nicotine and prescription amphetamines (maybe less so) are routinely used by climbers. Do those count as performance enhancing drugs? As Dane says, where does it start or end?

Just some thoughts after flailing on sport climbs yesterday...

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