Since the car accident in August things have been a little abnormal. I’ve certainly had some interesting stuff happening. Yvette and I got engaged! That has been the most amazing thing that’s ever happened to me.
Yvette and I also bought new cars! Sick! Yvette bought a beast! The new Focus ST! Wow!
I bought an excellent new car too! It’s a beauty! The Fiesta Turbo Diesel! So great! 806 km on 38L! Amazing!
Well, that’s the personal life… Now for a climbing update 🙂
Apart from getting engaged, I’ve been working really long hours, I’ve been sick and I haven’t been able to train nearly as much as I would like to. What I have been doing in terms of training has been continuing to link my gym training session with weights into bouldering training sessions finger board sessions. I’ve been seeing really positive results even with a minimal amount of time available for training. The cross training that I’ve been doing has been run 8 km when I have a chance. I’ve been training with a heart rate monitor so that I can maximize my efforts to train at peak effectiveness for short periods. I have been pushing my heart rate to maximum levels for about an hour to raise the bar of my cardio fitness. This is a lot harder when you are actually on a wall for training because you tend to get pumped (particularly when you’re training on a 40 degree overhang) and fall off before you achieve maximum heart rate. So what I can recommend is a 15-20 move boulder circuit, at just about at your onsight limit, finishing on a jug where you can lower your heart rate back to a lower HR zone and this allows you to fully recover. Then you repeat the circuit and the rest. Do this three to four times as one set. Then rest 10 minutes and repeat another 2 times. If you can do this, you’re really fit.
I’ve been suffering on all my projects! Been getting owned! Rodan kicked my ass, I fell off the last move of Shadowfax or 6 times, I keep falling at the chains of a new 8a at fern, I fell on the last move of Frack It! I’m getting owned! My plan for this weekend is to head back to Fernkloof and keep on working on some new stuff.
I have a new project at Fern that is going to be 8b+, it’s not so much a new line as it is an eliminate of Stormwatch. I’m climbing a direct start to Stormwatch (7B+) then into Stormwatch’s crux (7C) and then into a right hand finish at the top using almost none of the holds on the original line (8a?). I’m calling my version Brainwash. ha ha ha. It’ll be a really hard training route, perfect for building finger strength and power endurance. The top is sick, massive compression climbing and dynamic movement!!! Keeps right of the bolts instead of heading out left on to Faberge, it touches NONE of the Faberge holds.
I did have one pretty cool day in Boven… Sent Pit Fighter (8a+) and Stitch It (7c+) in consecutive attempts.
Here’s Frankie sticking the crux on Stitch It. Crush it dude!!!
Pit Fighter (8a+) Photo by Paige Claassen
I recently was able to participate in James Blay’s bouldering master class that was held at WonderWall Gym in Johannesburg. It was great to meet James who is one of the top guys at Wild Country in the UK, a brand that is supporting my climbing endeavors. The evening was focused on working technical boulder problems and increasing technical ability and route reading. The whole idea what to teach climbers how to really think ahead, not just see the holds but to actually visualize the movements and the fine details such as the direction of your toe on a hold. All this before you touched the wall.
Delivering some words of wisdom (or something at least!) to two of our strong climbers. (photo by Jono)
James Blay (on the left) and myself at the Wonder Wall Gym in Johannesburg. (Photo by Jono)