About Us

The Concept of RECREATE Climbing and Fitness…

Recreate Climbing and Fitness is family-owned and operated by Matt & Jen DeLong and Ryan & Lisa Howell.
Recreate Climbing and Fitness was founded by Lisa Howell and Jen DeLong who are both Montana natives and lifelong athletes. The dream to create Recreate came out of their love for recreation and functional fitness.  Seeing the great benefit they were getting from strength training and how it improved their ability to run, hike, ski, mountain bike and climb is where the concept for Recreate Gym was born.

Lisa Howell


For fifteen years, I worked as a dental hygienist and loved the relationship aspect of working in direct patient care. Prior to dental hygiene, I worked as a human resource specialist for Montana State after graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from MSU-Bozeman. Go Cats! I have a wonderful husband, Ryan, and two beautiful children, Sawyer and Sadie. We live in Butte and also run an electrical contracting business, Wired Electric.

I have always made fitness a priority in my life, and have found team training to be the most effective way to stay committed to a workout routine. Prior to team training, I trained for long distance running events, and ran outdoors or did the typical elliptical/treadmill cardio grind. Team circuit training broke up the monotony of running and cardio machines, and helped keep my body functioning for the long days in the dental chair.

When the dental practice I worked for closed down for several weeks, my life was briefly put on pause, and I was able to prioritize my physical and mental health. After fifteen years of static positioning and poor posture, I was suffering from a lot of chronic pain and injury.  I was able to work with a specialist and learn aspects of functional range conditioning and achieving mobility through movement to improve my physical health. After four weeks, I was moving better and able to do things with my body that I had long given up on. I got a glimpse of what an active, adventure-driven lifestyle could not only do for me, but the example it could set for my children.

I took this opportunity to pursue change in my life and find purpose. Luckily for me, my good friend, Jen, had been encouraging me to start a climbing gym with her for a few years.  So, she took me to my first climbing gym.  I climbed for three hours straight, and could hardly hold the steering wheel to drive myself home.  As someone who has struggled with a fear of heights my entire life, I was jacked!  I just did something that I never dreamed I could do – and I wanted more! So, we started touring climbing gyms and creating our own circuit style workouts in Jen’s basement gym.  We started dreaming together of a place that would push people beyond what they dreamed possible for themselves. A gym to prepare you for real life and adventure.  A place that would invite people from all backgrounds to come together for community, adventure and a commitment to a changed lifestyle.  Not just a climbing or fitness gym – but a place to pursue fitness from the inside out.  A mind, body, soul approach to a changed lifestyle – with a positive community to lift you up along the way.  And, from this dream, Recreate was born.

Jen DeLong


Hello, why name is Jen Delong. I’ve been involved in athletics and physical fitness my whole life. I have a love for physical movement and I have studied it from diverse perspectives.  I graduated from the University of Montana in 2003 with a degree in History and Communications. While I was at the U of M, I competed on the University Track Team for four years.  On the side, I got a minor in Contemporary Dance and went on the study dance for the next decade. I had the great honor to teach dance for five years, teaching all ages of kids to adults. Before I moved away from Missoula, I got the opportunity to dance with Bare Bait Dance Company, which was a highlight of my dancing career.

When I wasn’t dancing, you could find me rock climbing, mountain biking, snowboarding or strength training. I believe that all of the movement modalities I’ve been active in are complimentary and have improved my overall strength, skills and physical abilities. As I grow in experience, I believe strength training and functional fitness are foundational to living a vibrant and active life. In 2020 I completed a certification as a Healthy and Life Coach from the Health Coach Institute. In 2021 I competed in my first Spartan Race in Big Fork, Montana. It was an epic experience and  I hope to make it a yearly event. 

I’m a mom of three beautiful kids, Ava, Jude, and Adele and I have an amazing husband, Matt DeLong. My husband and I have been building businesses for the last decade. We are excited for this new adventure with Lisa and Ryan.