last water, kinda good

Last night’s pool session was kinda good. There was some freestyle and butterfly going down. Things felt smooth but I wasn’t keeping track of time. And at the end I did a bunch of kick work, which brought the cramps out like a mother. Total distance: 1200m.

day 6 on Atreyu – that’s right, 6

Owl Tor was visited Saturday by Phil, Andy, Skip, Andree, and me. Having dominated Power of Eating (5.11d) a couple weeks ago, Andree applied her attention to Auto Magic (5.12a) for her first day of legitimate redpoint burns on this new project. Perhaps though, “project” is not the right term. That would presume she spends a significant time rehearsing for the send, but having seen her on it Saturday I don’t believe that will be the case. Skip focused on Power and had a good day of it. In typical fashion for new patrons of the cliff, he doesn’t realize how close he is to putting it all together for a redpoint. He’s got stacks of strength from building a proud bouldering résumé, meaning he’s got the hard part handled already. Andy got on The Natural (5.12c) and No Skill (5.12c), both looking well within his striking range. And Phil got on Atreyu (5.13b) three times with me before moving on to laps on a few other routes. The focus of my day was three burns on Atreyu. Three burns for three falls at the crux. It’s a couple days past ridiculous for how much effort I’ve invested in this redpoint. First go I wasn’t even pumped, threw confidently for the crimp but didn’t even touch it. Second go had me barely on the crimp, unable to hold it longer than a moment before spitting off. I was all over that crimp for my third attempt but couldn’t hold on, knowing even before the throw my arms were ready to throw in the towel. My focus each burn was to relax, to stave off pumped arms all the way to the final crux move, which got harder each successive burn. But despite the day’s resultant failure I feel good about my fitness. These were my three best burns on Atreyu, ever. My focus on route-wide fitness, the kind of endurance one must have to climb powerfully for entire sequences, has stimulated some gain. I’m more comfortable on routes of this grade. I now climb at a pace between calculated movement and pump-racing speed. To finish the day I put five new bolts on my new line. And now I know, that’s no small task. New-routing is apparently enormously painful. Phil asked which was more tiring, putting in burns on my project or bolting the new line – honestly, it’s a toss up.

campusing is rad

I’m going to start keeping track of my campusing stuff. The woodie at the Shed just isn’t doing it for me anymore – I only want to campus. Which should be rad. If I only campus and get on routes all winter, spring will find me ferociously strong or horribly injured. Speaking of which, I cut short the 2-finger phase of my workout last night to favor an odd "twinge" in my left hand. I’m not worried but glad I stopped. No pain, just a little weirdness. Sometimes that stuff can even be good for connective tissue, is my theory anyway. Probably I rested a bit too long then pulled a bit too hard on the 2-finger incuts. But 3-finger work felt good.

Last night’s moves of note:

  • 4-1-4, 3-finger, big rungs
  • 2-1 drop, 2-finger, standard incut

last water, still strugglin’

I’m strugglin’ to get pool sessions over with lately. The motivation is has left me, presumably because it’s winter and that’s how it goes for swimmers during the dark months. Anywayz, did some freestyle last night.

da numbers:

  • 300m easy free/drills
  • 6 x 100m @ 2:30
    • coming in around 1:40
  • 100m free w/ paddles
  • 200m kick

total distance: 1200m

from climbing hell to heaven

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Friday had me traveling from my mom’s place in Washington to Joshua Tree for some winter radness. Climbing in the cold is rad. And cold it was – thirties and forties during the day. Sunny though, and little wind, so a well-insulated belayer can pull on crisp crystals and hopefully achieve some progress on otherwise greasy projects. Marcela was not projecting. She was cranking. “Yay, my first 5.10 trad lead”. Actually, it was a heady 5.10b onsight. The much touted Sidewinder (5.10b) got straight owned by one Brazilian crankmuffin late Saturday. So late in fact, that Justin and I had a mini epic getting down. Though I gotta say, jumping between pillars is less scary in the dark – at least then you can’t see how far down things are. Sunday, we got back to sport climbing business. The three of us pulled around on Desert Shield (5.13a). That’s a rad route. I would like to have made more progress on her, ideally gotten close to a redpoint, but she was having none of it. Those little crimps wore me down too fast and there’s barely any let up over her entire length. She’ll have to go in the project file for now.

last water, motivation issues

Bridget met me at the Los Banos pool last night for some hyper-unmotivating sets. I don’t know what my problem is lately. Winter just sucks away my motivation for swimming. Evening sessions are hard, and forget about early morning routines. Anywayz, I did 1000m of drills and IM stuff then got cold and left.