Friday, 13 July 2012
If you’re reading from the UK you don’t need me to tell you the weather has been grim. The rain has been one thing, although you can usually get round that in Scotland given our abundance of steep crags which aren’t seepy limestone. High humidity and light winds (i.e. Midge weather) have been the stopper. Actually, our rain has been very light and although there haven't been too many lovely days, the crags are in general very dry.
I could go cragging I guess, which might be good for the head. But it doesn’t feel like the right thing to do for some reason. Training feels right, or at least did feel right.
I have been doing my circuits night after night. Some strange things are going on though which I can’t put my finger on. I’m definitely getting less pumped per circuit. I’m even getting a reasonable amount done. Yet for some reason, I don’t ‘feel’ fit.
When warming up I’m feeling rough and starting from a low base. And even once I’m going I feel heavy. I’m guessing it’s just one of those periods you have to go through every so often. So I’ll carry right on, until my body decides to wake up to the message that I need it to get fitter and stronger.
To be fair, I do have a hunch that I was actually losing fitness when I was having all those sessions at Steall just on the one route. I’ve had that before and it can be quite marked. So I probably am starting from a low base! It’s quite early days too - 2 or 3 weeks on plastic after a long time away from it. So maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised that it feels like a bit of a shock to the system. We’ll see how things go for another couple of weeks and if the conditions are still poor for Steall I’ll decide whether it’s best to train more or go out and do some trad new routes. My bias will definitely be to train more. Doing trad new routes is always what I do in summer and although I love it, it might be a nice time to do something different and really make a 100% effort to do the hardest piece of climbing I’ve done.
There’s no doubt that there will be good conditions at some point during July and August. But even if it takes until September, at least I’ll have some endurance to speak of! When deciding like this I guess you have to really weigh up what success on the project would mean for you. For me, it would be the most important climb I’ve ever done (quite apart from being the hardest for me personally since it’s not my style). It would be such a great milestone to move on to something fresh.
Quite a strong argument to train like hell..