Saturday, 30 April 2011


In the video stills, two important moments: sticking the move to the "rest", and sticking the precarious dyno to the only good hold of the hard section. I am analyzing the video frame by frame, to try and unlock even the slightest detail that could help.
Today, for example, I went back to using my old Jet7 for my left foot, because the new Team, with their padded toe box, create too much friction when I drag my foot on the underside of the lower part of the roof while I dyno. I need to shave every gram.
I am happy. As I have said many times, minimal changes have a butterfly effect and nothing is what it may appear at first glance: how missing a hold can be better than sticking it? It's simple: because last week I was hitting the hold properly but my heel was peeling off; today I was hitting the hold in the wrong bit but my heel always stayed put. On the dyno, it's not hard to cover the distance to the hold, you can jump to that hold, but you won't hold the swing. It's hard to cover the distance without cutting loose. That's why sometimes missing a hold can be better than sticking it.
On a side note, in my last post I clearly showed my wrong mindset when I wrote I badly timed session could spoil the project. That's not what I want to think.
All I have to do is get back on training, doing good and well timed session. There are many ways to do things wrong, but often only one to do them right, and I only want to think about that single right one.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011


In the video, one very decent go on the project: hitting the hold of the hardest move, unfortunately with my heel peeling off the placement; humid rock (it was raining and very still, almost suffocating despite not being too hot) and probably not a strong enough core are to blame I reckon.
The important thing is that these good goes happen with increasing ease and frequency. From there the problem is still hard but I am confident.
On a related note, I am struggling not to train: I really want to, but a wrongly timed session or too much volume could easily have terrible effects on the project, and given that I can't climb on it every time that I'd like, I'd better keep my infamous calm. I am surely strong enough to climb it, so training is off for the moment. I have to say that last Thursday, when I got there with three days off before, I felt definitely strong: after all, I didn't lose 19 years of training in those three days.
That's all for the moment, see you in the future...

Saturday, 23 April 2011


In the pics, the devastation I left behind.

Where once the chilren's laughter used to resonate, and Mother Nature shone in all its beauty and grace for the climbers to rejoyce and appreciate, now there is only a desolated wasteland, after my passage.
What a day.
And I didn't even climb my project. I didn't really have to, I almost don't need to, I know it's just a matter of time, but on days like today everything goes into perspective. I was strong. I have been for a little while now, and it feels so good. In the last sessions I have never fallen from the usual roof direct and I have never missed the first dyno. I am almost doing it every time from the extension start, and soon will come the day that "almost" disappears.
Cold fingers are still an issue, but again I feel confident. A slight adjustement in the heel hooks sequence proved to be crucial, despite the fact that I had already tried it but to no avail. Something has changed. Many things have.
Today, while doing another lap on the direct, I got the pinch and I knew I wasn't coming off. Every time I do it, I do it more slowly and in a more controlled way. Today even the last crimp felt good, it almost made me drop from the surprise. I love climbing because climbing always shocks me with new things, and because despite the fact that I am just a punter close to his fourties, climbing still makes me happy, happier than I had ever thought on that mid-March day of 1993, when I first put on an oversized pair of climbing boots, touched the rock, and broke forever that invisible veil that separeted me from a better reality. I will never thank myself enough for that choice. It was in me, and this all is like me.
A few of the things that are starting to make a huge difference:
doing short, intense sessions instead of long tiring days;
buying new shoes with fresh rubber, especially on the heels;
buying Antihydral, getting to the problem with hard skin for the nasty holds;
being confident and taking a few more rest days;
and most of all, never, never ever losing the fucking faith.