Monday, 4 January 2010


The number of the beast except of course I'm not very beastly at the moment hence ticking a load of 6s in Costa Blanca instead of the socially more acceptable 7s, HAH.

The trip was good, 5 days of weather ranging from fresh and breeze and great for climbing to roasting warm and good for lounging in between climbs. The total amount of daytime rain was about 3, not hours or minutes but droplets whilst driving to a crag. 5 days of short climbing afternoons, long nights asleep, and pretty good sport climbing mileage. 6 things of note:

1. I really really really like going on climbing trips abroad, even just a short trip, even to the Costa Blanca (a relatively "standard" area). The first day I was a bit jaded with the rock "same old Euro-lime", but after going to a couple of different areas, I properly got into the vibe out there. Lots of climbing, lots of choice, different settings/culture (again even if it is fairly standard) climbing each day, just pure simple fun and pleasure. I could have kept going longer and nearly did (more on this later).

2. 2005 when I was still just puntering along, I went to Costa Blanca and ticked some F6cs. 2008 when I had an injured elbow, I went to Costa Blanca and ticked some F6cs. 2009/10....I went to Costa Blanca and ticked some F6cs. Hmmm. What does it all mean?? Not much progress overall, but then again 4 months ago I could barely walk... And I think I'm putting the effort in - those challenges of some F6cs were genuine and were really enjoyable to climb. It's cool, it may not seem like progress but it's part of the process...

3. The (few) routes I failed on and the routes I found hard were mostly, surprisingly, due to finding crux moves hard, rather than being pumped out of my tiny wee mind. This is quite unusual and obviously means I am WEAK as well as merely unfit. Which gives me a good excuse to go bouldering ;).

4. I had a little shoulder niggle before going away. Over Xmas I tackled it with plenty of massage and stretching. On the Costa Blanca trip with 5 continuous days of climbing, it felt fine. After coming back to the Glasgow freeze and sitting in a coolish room for an hour, it felt achy and tweaky already. Maybe not surprising since Scotland is where Siberians are going for their winter chilling out holidays at the moment!

5. My fitness was generally okay - I didn't get too tired on the routes, and actually after 5 days of climbing felt fine and could have kept going easily. Walking up hills is still FUCKING DESPERATE. I really can't convey in mere words how hard it is to be walking for a few minutes up a hill and feel sick and dizzy with exhaustion. This is despite very slow but actual progress with running. I really need to tackle the uphill walking thing more directly - therefore in addition to bouldering I shall try some hillwalking. Choadtastic!!

6. I still really really really like Chorizo.


bluebrad said...

Sounds like a good trip.

HILLWALKING!! I really can not wait to see what the mighty Beagles has to say about that! Anyway I like your lack of ability to walk up hills - it means that for a brief moment during a day at the crag I get to burn you off. ;-)

Fiend said...

Hah yeah, bouldering and then hillwalking, also swimming too cos it's too icy to run here....see a pattern?? Choad Of Choad Hall part deux!!

I need to train the walking so when you try to drag me into some Classic Rock nonsense I can survive it with enough energy left for roadside cragging the next day...