It's that time of year again when the nights are well below freezing, the snow is sticking up high and the leaves are committing suicide in a very beautiful way. Yep, winter climbing is coming and quickly. I'm coming off a decently strong fall of rock climbing (for me) so I've got a base in there somewhere, but in the last two weeks I've done nothing but drive (sit) and fly the paramotor (sit) with a few aerobic blasts but not much. Two weeks and my arms are smaller than their normal skeletal size, my ab muscles aren't looking too defined and my aerobic fitness is pretty pathetic. Time to get it on.
My goals are all over the place at the moment, but I have a couple of big ice/mixed trips coming up and one weird goal that I'll maybe share later. That goal would involve an insane amount of ice, so I need to have the power for decently hard mixed and the endurance to go hard for many hours of "easy" movement on steep ice... Totally contradictory physiological goals, what else is new.
I'm going to post my workouts and climbing efforts as they happen, both to amuse the reader and motivate me. Maybe some public pressure to get it done will help, and I'll take any scrap of motivation I can find. I have a 16-month old star of a daughter, work, a hole in the side of my house that needs fixing (love those renos) and a lot of other stuff that's competing for my time and energy. In short, I'm likely a lot like many of you who read these ramblings: over-committed, short on time and looking for all kinds of climbing action instead of specificity.
Tuesday, October 7th: Day One. Weather poor in general.
Back in the source of power, the Vsion. After two weeks totally off I wanted to start kinda slow, I've found that's a good way to prevent injury. I had one hour and 30 minutes to get it done, here's what felt right:
20 minutes of movement on the walls: Just moving, stretching on the wall (this is great for range of motion and feeling where my body is at), getting to the point where removing the sweatshirt is necessary. No movements that tax me, mellow but real pump.
First half of my 30-minute speed yoga (Spoga) thing (three A suns, three B, bunch of flow poses that I link, it works for me to keep my body from binding up too much). I used to care if I looked like a geek in the gym while doing this routine. Thankfully I've made peace with the fact that I am a geek in the gym, I need to do this Spoga thing or I start moving like a geriatric. Let the kids laugh, it's good for them and me.
-Four laps on "Yellow," about 30 moves on generally big holds, enough to get pumped and have to try a bit but no tweaky moves, with the rest of my Spoga done between intervals. No time in the gym should be wasted; either you're going at it, stretching, belaying or gasping. Sitting around is a waste of time.
-Dangle off tools in the mixed cave for about about 10 minutes. Make sure to release gently and fully onto each shoulder in one-handed hangs, keep it controlled and very smooth. Not really bouldering, just letting my shoulders and hands know that I'm going to be abusing them in the coming weeks--but not today.
-Three rounds of: vertical offset pullups (one per side, both sides, good form, no straining), front levers off tools (nowhere even close to front levers, rock climbing does NOTHING for my core compared to mixed. Just pull knees to chest, extend one leg, collapse, repeat until I can't get knees to chest).
-Mess about with a few figure 4s off tools focusing on smooth releases and catches, not going to failure at all, just remembering the motions and feeling my body move through the range of its joints.
Closed it out with a few minutes of light campusing, I still want to do a few rock climbs that require some degree of contact strength...
That's it, 90 minutes of near-constant motion of varying intensity. On a scale where "1" is my couch and "10" is all-out I'd rate this one about a 4.73. The emphasis is on waking my body up to the movement and stress, not building new strength. I'll be sore tomorrow because I haven't trained these movements but not painfully so. The worst mistake I could make right now would be to blast my muscles and joints so hard that things started to break down either suddenly (injury) or over time (injury).
Soundtrack: Buck 65:
"Sign of the times, choose a blind man to guide the blind,
We all try to find a good excuse to hide behind
Difficult isn't it? The point? there is none
Forget what you know, cause that's true wisdom
Chorus: Cop shades, falcon versus eagle
Cop shades, weapons and sex toys
Cop shades, falcon versus eagle
Cop shades, waepons and sex toys"