Well my initial high spirits soon dwindled. 10 days after i hurt my finger i had a minor op with a predicted 3-7 day recovery. That turned into 3 weeks of misery and sucked the life out of my psyche. I was planning on doing pull ups, core - front lever and ab roll stuff, dumbell complexes etc. but anything that involved me engaging my core was agony. I made a huge mistake of googling complications to do with the op and spending a couple of sleepless nights. Note to self: never google anything health related.
On the plus side we flew to Spain on a house hunting mission and got one first go. Villanueva del Cauche is now my local crag as of 1st August, a whole 6 minutes by car :0) El Chorro is an hour away, Archidona, Loja, El Torcal are all within an hour and there are a few quality local crags not rockfaxed about 15 mins away. Even better is we've found one of our Spanish friends lives in the next village to us - ready made access to partners now too.
All good on that front but i only got back to climbing this last week with a rained off session at St Bees and a very half arsed session at Penrith. I couldn't get up a 7a i got 2nd go a few months ago as i was just too scared to pull hard with my injured finger. Despite keeping up with the ice water treatment it didn't feel too much better after 4 weeks. St Bees was a show of true determination as the heavens opened and it threw it down so we retreated to work the sit start of Hueco Crack. BIG moves but i couldn't get my heel up into the cup from the first move. A problem to do with my static climbing style. I need to take the momentum from the first move and carry it through to help swing the leg up. I'm not going to mention the fact that Jonny got it in a later session 2nd go. I wouldn't give him the satisfaction !
A few weeks off and you lose a lot of climbing ability. Strength, fitness ( what i had left anyway ) and my movement all feel very rusty. I've spent the rest of the week trying to get some AnCap boulder problems sorted for the next few weeks and getting some feel back. I had a session on Dreaming of Red Rocks which left me nearly in tears as i think i am worse on it than i was 2 yrs ago. In some ways it could have been worse as i was supposed to go to Kilnsey and have a look at Comedy. I got a big booking for work i couldn't ignore so it had to be Dreaming instead. I am still aching 2 days later. Drinking until 2 am the night before and then ghyll scrambling until 4pm was not the best way to set myself up for success.
Watching Mario make it look easy was great - for him - and painful for me. He's been on his home board a lot and thinking about it it's perfect for Dreaming and bouldering. He's been doing 10-12 move circuits on it with a decent rest. Sounds like AnCap to me. Dreaming is perfect territory for this. Easy climbing into a roof, a crux on poor slopers and crimps just when you're tired and then all out to the top on steep but good holds. All the climbing is probably about 12 moves. You don't get pumped as such, there isn't enough time, you just get power fade. Inadvertently he has been doing the perfect training. Bastard !
I am writing the week off as a 'getting back into it' week. I now have a google docs schedule set up and a plan to follow. I am hoping more than you can know that it will all come together and this is just a culmination of a lay off and periodisation. I am certainly stronger than i've been previously and seeing Mario improve so much makes me hopeful for what is to come.