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Fitness Obsession: Pretty Little Liars Star Shay Mitchell Loves Rock Climbing, and Here's Why

Shay Mitchell, Rock climbing blue jean images/Getty Images; SIPA

Remember when you were a kid and you used to love climbing all over things? Well, it isn't just child's play anymore! Now you can climb to your heart's content and you're actually doing yourself a solid!

Pretty Little Liars star Shay Mitchell recently told us how much she loves this total-body training method. It's a fun way to get your fitness on, is a killer core workout and helps elongate the muscles, giving us the "long and lean" look we've all been banging down the doors of Pilates studios for.

"It is an amazing workout. If you haven't tried it you should," she said. "I actually just rock-climbed when I was away on vacation and now I'm searching out rock climbing gyms. That's my new obsession for 2013."

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And we can't say that we blame her. Rock climbing is really addicting. The best news of all is that there isn't just one way to hit the wall.

Here are three different ways that you can get your climb on:

Indoors: Indoor climbing gyms are everywhere. These vertical playgrounds are a convenient way to get your climb on without having to worry about the critters and other little creatures hiding in the crevices!  Most places charge a daily fee, with an additional charge to rent equipment (you'll need shoes, chalk and a harness). Usually, you can join indoor climbing centers just as you would a gym, and pay a monthly membership fee to visit as often as you want.

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Outdoors: Unless you're visiting an established outdoor rock climbing place (popular at a lot of vacation spots and tourist attractions), this requires a bit more expertise and usually your own equipment. There are definitely a lot of perks to climbing outdoors. For one, the scenery beats the heck out of being cooped up inside a climbing gym. Secondly, the adrenaline rush is unlike anything a traditional workout can ever offer. While it has its advantages, climbing outdoors is a much larger undertaking than just popping over to the local climbing center where everything is already set up and ready to go.

Bouldering: If you want to hit the wall without a buddy—go bouldering!  Most traditional climbs require someone at the other end of the rope, called a belayer (there are ways to do it without one, but that's pretty advanced stuff). But having someone available every time you want to work out isn't always an option, so bouldering is a great way to get your rock climbing fix when you're flying solo. You can boulder indoors or outdoors. This is done without a rope—just have a crash pad handy! Instead of regular climbs, where you're practicing longer movements, bouldering works on the shorter, more precise movements and you typically don't go above 15 feet off the ground. 

Have you ever tried rock climbing? Which is your favorite way to hit the wall? 

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