It's half way through 2015 and, for some of us, we’ll be looking at the next half of year ahead and for the rest of us we’ll be looking at how the last 6 months have gone. You may have set yourself some challenges, whether it be climbing or lifestyle related. Personally, I set some challenges for Climb Out which were a mix of climbing and lifestyle related.
When looking up the definition of a challenge, I got the following:
1. A call to someone to participate in a competitive situation or fight to decide who is superior in terms of ability or strength.
2. A call to prove or justify something
3. Dispute the truth of validity of
4. Invite (someone) to engage in a contest.
All of this strikes as being very ego orientated, with the use of words like competition, justify, validity and contest. Were these words what you have in mind when you think of your challenges? I understand we chose our goals to help push our boundaries or to face our fears. However, think deeply and most of the challenges, ultimately will prove or disprove something, we could go on to say that the challenges are a way to prove or justify something to ourselves. This clashes with my beliefs somewhat. One of the reasons we moved up North was to get away of the talk of who did what, what colour someone did or did not do, of the staring eyes etc. etc. I admit, we have not got away from it, however, we have many more options to be able to go to remote crags with no one else about, to enjoy climbing the way I love it – remote, peaceful with a select few of close friends with the same ideals. So why have I set challenges for myself? Yes I want to get better, I want to improve and push myself, but why set challenges for that?
Looking at the challenges I set for 2015:
1 10 Pull Ups
2 1 x 1 arm pull up
3 5 x tri dips on the rings
4 Turn my phone off more
5 Be more committed when climbing
6 Learn a new language
7 Spend more time in the van with no technology around, my true love.
8 Get back onto routes
9 Grow more veg this summer
10 Improve shoulder strength to do a hand stand.
11 12. Spend less time in Bar T’at
All of these challenges seem a bit disorientated and focussed on different things, so I am starting to question why I set them. It seemed fun at first. Bingo, fun, that’s what it should all be about. At the end of the day if it’s not fun why flippin do it? So lets take a look at them again:
1 10 Pull Ups: This is the ability to prove to myself that I can do pull up’s and I am not a total floppy mess when it comes to doing them. So for now, this one stands I am enjoying the process, the gains, the set backs and pushing through. This is all about the climbing for me, I see lines that are just too powerful for me, so this is staying in the aim to try more fun lines.
2 1 x 1 arm pull up: Not sure about this one, I’ll need to think on it a little more.
3 5 x tri dips on the rings: As #1
4 Turn my phone off more : The aim of this was to be more mindful about where I was at any point in time and not be distracted. However, I enjoy reading through social media sites, keeping abreast of things and people. Basically I am nosy! However, I do turn it off when I want some quiet time.
5 Be more committed when climbing: Is this ego based? This will prove how I can climb when I really try, and yes, I have been going 100% when I when I climb and have seen huge gains. It’s also totally exhausting, showing how much I really have not tried. This one stays as I have fun when I climb, so why not be 100% at that each time?
6 Learn a new language: This is being removed. I’ve had some time of work recently and honestly don’t know how I have time to work. I’ve got way too much stuff going on in my life right now, which can be very stressful trying to juggle it all, so why add another thing to do in to the mix. Removed, with a clear conscience.
7 Spend more time in the van with no technology around, my true love: enough said.
8 Get back onto routes: So, I detest the summer. I like the long nights and mainly the early mornings, however, hayfever is a bitch, add killer midges which frequent the UK crags and its just not fun. So I’m not going to force myself, if I fancy doing it, I will, if not, then hey ho that’s just the way the cookie crumbles!
9 Grow more veg this summer: Same as number 6, although I did try, most of them died. So on to doing something else with the time and move on.
10 Improve shoulder strength to do a hand stand: I will stick with the shoulder strength, so I can climb more varied lines, but why the heck to do a hand stand?!
11 Spend less time in Bar T’at: I’ve never spent so much time in a pub, but I love it and I love meeting the people there, so whilst it’s not as often, I’m not going to feel guilty about going
So as you can see, some of the challenges are no longer relevant. It was not until I had some time off that I realised I have filled my life with way too many things. So days off work have been spent trying to catch up, which means when I move on to the next day, I never felt rested or content as the list just kept growing. So personally, reviewing the challenges was about changing my priorities. Challenges are great, the help you maintain progress and focus, however, they should be organic and evolve with you. I now have some clearer focus for the next 6 months and it feels great!
I’ve not blogged for the last couple of months, mainly because the grit season finally came to and end. So it was time to sit back, chill out and not train. It’s been awesome! However, its only half a year until the next season so it will soon be time to get back on it, and have fun.
It’s been great wondering about Ilkely, but I do get itchy feet so we’ve gone to some more crags and had a few epic adventures along the way! We’ve headed to some new crags in the Lake District and North Wales and after a few adventures out, I’ve seen how stunning the UK is and how quality the climbing is. If the weather was stable I’m certain we’d have a lot more people making the trek to climb here!
The most stunning place was Lad Stones, it was absolutely stunning and worth the trek up there. The blocs are huge and have some real, proper problems on them and you won’t find another soul about! Bliss
As usual I’ve made some vids, have not managed to get the Lad Stones ones yet but these should keep you going for now.
The Grouch: https://vimeo.com/126732231
The Lakes: https://vimeo.com/126736396
Andy Browns Wall: https://vimeo.com/126742163
Olicana Arete: https://vimeo.com/126843015
Sweet Dreams and Superset: https://vimeo.com/127292821