brdgt: (Bitches Get Stuff Done by crazyvictoria)
Climb a Mile

I did it! 220 routes in 27 days!
brdgt: (Cardio)
Running: Week three of the half-marathon training finished with a 6 mile run on Sunday. The program is going much smoother this time around, even with the extra day of running and attempts at pace setting. I find myself halfway through my long run before I think to look at the clock.

Climbing: Well, my climbing partner and I started the "Climb a Mile" in February challenge just for fun, openly saying "there is no way we will finish this, but let's see how far we can get for fun," and gosh darn it - we're both going to finish! Dianna will be done tonight because she had a stronger start than me, but I'll be done on Wednesday! We went from an average of 7 climbs a night, two nights a week to 28 climbs a night, three times a week! We are looking forward to incorporating more laps into our climbs, but also to adding in new routes - this challenge does not incentivize trying anything new or very hard, it's more about stamina.

Strength-Training: I am really happy with the benefits I am seeing by just doing this class once a week. It's has increased my core strength exponentially more than yoga ever did - greatly helping in climbing, as well as yoga. Most of all - squats and lunges? They make your ass look amazing!

Yoga: I need to get back to Kristin's low key but intense class for the spiritual well being (stupidly stayed out too late partying on Friday night and missed the class I wanted to go to with [livejournal.com profile] purplemb13), but the strength training class has definitely helped in the power yoga class I like to do Monday and Friday morning - those crazy push-ups and sit-ups don't seem so bad anymore. Actually, I should probably try head stands again...

Diet: I've plateaued a little again at 145, but with less variance on a day-to-day basis, so I'm very happy with that. I'm back in my skinny jeans and things just fit better. Mostly though, I'm seeing a real effect on my running by adjusting my diet to my training. That was one element I didn't incorporate last time, but by being more careful about the carbs, protein, and fat that I eat, I definitely have more energy on my runs and I am more efficiently building more muscle (I was surprised last year that I didn't seem to build more muscle, but now I see I wasn't eating what my body needed to do that). It's also helped me save money because you really have to plan out your week, especially breakfast and snack wise, if you want to have good fuel and muscle building options available.

One thing that has definitely returned from training last year - the need for more sleep than I am used to - I have to start adjusting for that because it makes getting up for 6AM yoga hard when I used to be able to go to bed at 11 and still get up for that.

Brrrr!

Jan. 24th, 2013 02:58 pm
brdgt: (Cardio)
Baby, it's been cold in Wisconsin this week, which is a great excuse to stay inside and be productive and write.



I also started teaching this week and boy did I miss it! So far, my Spring schedule has been working out really well, with huge chunks for writing. I told my second job I couldn't work for them this semester and, while I will miss the extra money, I am already loving having that time and energy back for myself. They are nice people to work with, but I was starting to feel under-appreciated and resentful. I left on good terms and will offer to sub and plan on going back in the summer, but this break will be nice.

I started taking a strength training class at my gym that I think is a good fit for me - just challenging enough, a good time of day, and hopefully will prove to be good cross-training for climbing, running, and frisbee. It's called BodyPump and according to folks on forums it burns around 300 calories in a one hour session, while still being focused on weights rather than cardio. It's at 7:30 in the morning and I'm not so tired after it that I can't go for a run too. It's also on my "Stay At Home" day, so it gets me up and energized early.

Oh, and speaking of climbing - I've been working on incorporating 5.9s into my weekly routine. I can't do every 5.9, but the easier ones or the ones that clearly weren't set by someone 6 feet tall (I miss the days when the gym marked who set what, so you could avoid the routes set by unimaginative tall setters). A good route setter should make it so there is more than one way to do a route (for example, short people tend to have smaller hands and can often use foot holds as hand holds, where as taller people with bigger hands can not - so there is no reason to not set foot holds strategically so you can do a route in more than one way). Anyway, I rarely even do 5.7s anymore (usually just when it's so busy there aren't many options) and can do every 5.8 in the gym... eventually :)
brdgt: (Cardio)
Back in May [livejournal.com profile] purplemb13, our friend Brian, and I ran the Monona 5K

Group Monona 5k

Best 5K finish so far for me

Monona 5k

Some more Union South rock climbing

Union South Rock Climbing
brdgt: (Default)
A few months ago my climbing partner and I decided to try out the climbing wall at Union South. Nick took some pictures :)

I can climb!

It was actually pretty good.

climbing3

The only weird part was that the routes were auto-belay and we're used to standing under our partner, belaying them and offering them beta.

brdgt: (Kickin Ass by stormwindicons)
Last night was a nice night of climbing. I'm pushing to move up to more consistent 5.9s and I found a fun problem to work on.

Another climbing gym once nicknamed our climbers "Boulders Shoulders" and in the below video you can see a Boulder regular, Katie, who my climbing partner and I often stare enviously at. She's at the beginning briefly, but climbing for realsie at 3:44. It also gives you an idea of what climbing outdoors in Wisconsin is like.

brdgt: (Default)
Great advice for climbing - and life:



Wicked Gravity
Chris Weidner: Five tips to climb your best this spring
By Chris Weidner, Boulder Daily Camera, 03/13/2012

Over the winter I decided to try to make the next few months the best climbing season I've ever had.

I researched different training methods, interviewed climbers of all abilities and read countless magazine and online articles. The tricky thing about climbing is that there's no tried-and-true process or workout regime that works for most people like there is in running and cycling, for example. It's more complicated than that.

I was reminded that attitude, strategy and the mental aspect of climbing are at least as important as physical strength, and probably much more so. In fact, much of the advice I found has little to do with physical training.

I began with a list of what I thought were the most important concepts for climbing improvement. As I whittled it down to the following five tips I also realized that, with a little creativity, these tips are applicable to a lot more than just climbing.

Put people first.

The greatest thing about climbing is that it requires an extraordinarily deep level of trust between partners. Our ropemates literally have our life in their hands, and vice versa, every time we climb. That's amazing, yet terrifying. And it's why the climbing objective should always be secondary to the people with whom we choose to climb. After all, they have an enormous impact on our entire climbing experience, including our performance.

Decide what you want, and get after it.

Why do you climb? What do you want out of it?

No matter how hard you climb or how seriously you take it, goals help drive and steer your motivation. Define your goals as specifically as possible. Make them lofty yet attainable, and set a time frame to achieve each one.

Dream big. Expand your comfort zone. Rise to the level of the goals you choose.

Learn to deal with fear.

Whether fear of falling, fear of failure or something else entirely, fear holds climbers back much more than we want to admit.

Controlling fear in climbing is a lifelong process. The crux is differentiating the rational fear that keeps us alive from the irrational fear that prevents us from A) having fun and B) reaching our potential. Our fear is irrational when a relatively safe situation feels life-threatening. Like when the rope is properly anchored and secure on your harness, but the thought of falling makes you want to scream, sob and pray all at the same time.

The first step toward mastering fear is to acknowledge its presence. Next, try to identify your irrational fear and learn all you can about it: when, where and why does it sneak into your mind? Finally, once you know what you're dealing with, you can begin the coping process.

P.S.: If climbing never scares you, I recommend quitting immediately.

Variety is the psyche of life.

Even the most obsessed climbers switch their focus occasionally. Follow your enthusiasm, and when it dulls do something different. Go bouldering at Flagstaff, climb long routes in Eldorado Canyon, clip bolts in Boulder Canyon. We even have a world-class variety of indoor climbing in "Valmont Canyon" where four gyms are located within a mile of each other.

Mixing things up is not only good for your mind, it will stress your body in different ways, which aids recovery and wards off injury. Sometimes (gasp!) we need a break from climbing altogether. There's nothing like a little time off to stoke the psyche.

If only there was something else to do outdoors in Boulder ... .

Be flexible.

Like most things, climbing rarely goes according to plan. Embrace climbing's ups and downs (literally). It won't always be fun; you won't always climb well; you will get frustrated. But don't take it too seriously. With the right people, a few goals and a psychological strategy, you may just have the best season of your life.
brdgt: (Default)
Yoshimi has added the tail to her pose:



And this is the look she gives me when I put her back in the crate:



And she has taken to rattling the cage bars with her feeding tube:



Things are slowly, slowly improving. She hasn't peed outside the box since Sunday and has only thrown up twice in the past week and both were very small (quarter size) watery vomits. I have heard her eating kibble for the past four nights (although it must just be one or two pieces, because the bowl isn't going down) and while she is still weak, she isn't wobbly anymore.

She has another check up on Tuesday, but I am hopeful that I can escape for two nights next weekend for camping. I've been able to get some work done now that I have my netbook back and have incorporated a few things back into my schedule (running! yoga!) and escaped the house a few times to visit with friends. Next week will be an experiment in getting actual research done.

Last night we did bouldering - ouch! Bouldering is climbing without a harness and looks desceptively easy because you stay pretty low and I think most people think climbing is about height. You spend at leat 75% of your time bouldering staring at the wall and talking to people, working out the problem. You can really see the difference in how men and women climb when you watch people bouldering - men power up with upper body strength, women move more gracefully and use their lower body strength:

Woman showing the basics:


Man powering through (but with some nice moves):

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