Saturday, 25 June 2011

Messy climbing

I read a post of Dave Mac's a while ago relating to how atheletes try to keep their lives 'clean' so they can focus on training/competing. The mess is the every day stuff that gets in the way and stops you either getting out for fun or achieveing goals. I've had 2 weeks of mess and have hardly climbed. My planned rest week was going great until it got extended and when i should have been hitting targets at my peak i was drinking beer and having pub lunches. However child free weekends don't come along that often so we grabbed it when Grandma Biscuit made the offer.

When i look at what i have to do to get my climbing time in it's amazing i get out at all. My kids are both adopted, having fostered them previously. They come with a lot of baggage in the form of emotional damage, learning difficulties and behavioural problems (think flooding the school and throwing the entire contents of bedrooms down stairs at regular intervals.) This has led to me home educating our son with daughter soon to follow in September.

My wife had a very time demanding job, until March, when she finally cracked up and has been off work due to the stress work caused her. Doing the work of 2 people couldn't go on for ever. She took 2 weeks leave during which she crumbled and realised she couldn't go back. She is still not back to her old self but is fighting on and getting there with regular counselling sessions. It's horrifying to see a confident professional, who takes such pride in her work, reduced to the stage where some days we have to fight to get her out of bed.

We are moving to Spain on the 2nd of August. That means that right now we are in chaos with boxes everywhere, big decisions to make and feeling excited and scared at the same time.

I also need to fit in work running my outdoor activity business and the associated paperwork that goes with it. Whilst this is bringing in good money it is also seriously eating into my time. It's not fair for me to work all day and then ask Mrs Biscuit to look after the kids in the evening as well so if i work there's no playing out for me.

Then there are all the normal day to day things you have to get done as a house husband with 2 kids and a 4 bedroom house and the other fun stuff aside from climbing.

This post isn't meant to be a whinge just a reminder to myself that if i don't/can't get out climbing it's not the end of the world and i shouldn't beat myself up over it.

Spain is not going to be a magic bullet to fix all this but a lot of mess will be done away with.

Even if i only get out 2ce a week with climbing areas like this to go at:

VIDEO: BD athlete Adam Ondra repeating Chilam Balam (9b) and making the first ascent of La Planta de Shiva (9b) in Spain from Black Diamond Equipment on Vimeo.

i should be the happiest climber in the world.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Enough success it's time for some hard work

Mario testing the landing zone

The ticklist has been going well with only one rain interrupted session missed. That meant i didn't get to the Bowderstone to do Crack Superdirect but I went to Kewick wall instead and had a play there. I've never got on with the place really but their board could be worth the entrance fee. I ended up having a session on that as Adam Hocking was in, having also been rained off, and was monkeying around on it.

I managed to repeat a couple of problems he was doing easily - positive wad points :0) Then he did a mad cross through manoeuvre followed by a shoulder press that nearly prolapsed my shoulder girdle, if that's possible. It's brilliant to see someone with such power under such control. He was on a warm down btw and says that though he's route fit at the moment he's not on top bouldering form. At this point i lost all accrued wad points and received a big kick up the arse motivation wise as i realised how far i have to go just to get to 7B.

I managed 2 sessions on the board this week and 4 in all. Most finger intense week i've had for a long time and my fingers feel good Only one session outside, at St Bees, where i ticked Hueco Crack ( Low Start ) 6C+/7A. I also did a line i must have walked past a hundred times and had never noticed. It's not hard but has some nice moves and holds on it and is worth doing. It must have been done before as it is obvious once you 'see' it. Mario modelled the landing for the camera and it's potentially dodgy as the line is the closest to the drop into the sea/rocks below.

It's been great having all this success of late and it's set me off on a positive track that i've been de railed from for quite some time. However i need to get cracking now and be prepared for some hard work. Other than a coaching session this week i am having a few days off and i'm then going to launch an all out attack on the Bowderstone. Crack Superdirect has to go quick and i'd like Statstick in the same session. Then it's time to see how much progress has really been made with a re-match on Picnic.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Sing a Rainbow video

Sing a Rainbow from andrew mcvittie on Vimeo.

As it says in the title. A vid i thought i'd lost when deleting stuff from my memory card. Found it last night so stuck it on here.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Tick list is going down !

Setting realistic goals is such an important part of improving in any sport. I still think 8a by the end of the year is realistic but trying to get 7c in this country, with my lifestyle here, was not on the cards. Having changed to bouldering goals to improve my strength and, more importantly, work on technique i am feeling much more positive.

It feels good to set a challenge and then get it done. That feeling of achievement and gratification has been sadly lacking.

Another good week has seen me tick Slopey Arete (6C+/7A) and The Rail (6C+). The Rail was a James Pearson style on-sight ;0) I had done the starting 6C that goes straight up before but never took the rising traverse finish. That's why it looks sketchy on the vid and i am sticking with that excuse.
The video is meant to help me look at my technique but i have had a play with i-movie on my wife's laptop and made a little vid. The light was poor and the sun in an awkward place which is why it's not great quality. Something i'm going to do more of though.

Well pleased with Slopey Arete though. I had sat at the bottom of it a couple of months ago and couldn't get off the ground. I had to change Johnny's beta a bit as i couldn't 'strong' the sit start like him. Really nice problem and i over came it with technique.

Looking at getting out once more this week. Going to have a technique session at Bees with a go at cracking off Hueco low start. I am giving myself 1 go to remember the moves then do it 2nd go.

It's all positive.