We headed down to Harrogate to have a go at the leading ladder currently running there. It was our first attempt at competitive climbing, and it seemed to push us both. For me, I found that the added motivation to not weight the rope pushed my grade – I managed an onsight 6b lead, and almost managed a 6b+ onsight, failing due to missing a hold, hidden behind a large volume and not seen from the ground! Frustrating, but a good lesson in route reading! I’m feeling stronger and stronger as the weeks progress, which hopefully means that the focus and training is paying off!
As it took us longer than expected to work through all of the routes, we’re heading back tomorrow for the harder routes! I’ll post the scorecards tomorrow!
The closer I get towards leading at F7a, the more I notice certain physiological elements that need attention. It started with a feeling that I was lacking in finger strength – regular finger pull-ups and hangs from door frames have helped a lot with this. I then noticed I was struggling to hang small pockets, so focused on working routes that contained a number of them. All of this quite directed finger training has meant that I’ve been finishing training sessions with fingers that feel they’ve had a workout, but not much else. The area I feel I’m now lacking in is power-endurance – my forearms are pumping out far too quickly on sustained routes. To this end, we went to the Leeds Wall and jumped on the big overhanging routes there. It’s interesting to notice how the grades suddenly feel much harder when climbing a different style of route. The aim of cranking out some big overhanging routes is to improve both overall power, and stamina. We’ll see how the next few weeks pan out..