4 May 2010

For those into a few sports

Been talking to Tim Emmett over the past couple of days and sharing ideas about training when you are into a lot of different sports. The same points apply if you work a lot and generally have limited time to climb. If routes are ‘your thing’, you’ll want to do mostly routes in your limited time of going climbing. And if you have any time in the year when you’ll be training indoors, it’s likely that endurance will be an immediate high priority. 
This presents a problem for longer term development of strength to move to the next level in climbing. There simply isn’t enough time in the year spent pulling super hard on small holds to get really strong fingers. As always, there are workarounds and they are basic stuff when it comes down to it:
1 - Use brief fingerboard sessions to effectively ‘concentrate’ the strength training into the most time efficient hit. Think of it as the ‘espresso’ of finger strength training. You can get away with it because your time on the routes is keeping your technique sharp. For example, if you are an expedition climber, hang that wee fingerboard rung you packed at basecamp and camp near those lovely granite boulders.
2 - When you do find yourself with enough time to get some bouldering in between routes sessions, you really need to make the most of that time. If you are frequently visiting unfamiliar climbing walls/crags. It’s easy to waste precious time finding the good problems at the right intensity or making some up. Try extra hard to eliminate this by tagging onto locals who can show you what’s what. Don’t be shy, they really wont bite. And if they sandbag you, so what? You wanted a hard session didn’t you. Try not to be put off when you can’t complete many problems. It’s normal if its an unfamiliar situation. Just try hard and you’ve done well.


Steve Perry said...

I find it hard to juggle climbing with mountain biking. I love both but if I had to choose then it would be climbing that would (does) get most of my time.

I find it hard though because when I do something I like to commit 100% and committing to climbing and endurance mountain biking 100% is hard to do. I don't want either to suffer but I feel that if I want to achieve my goals in one or the other then one will have to go.

Any pointers Dave?

Steve Perry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Go biking when the weather is rubbish?

Steve Perry said...

On the outset that sounds like a good idea, however I'm lucky enough to live 10 minutes away from steep rock which stays dry even during rain. So, no such thing as 'bad weather'.

What does seem to be working, though, is using mountain biking as a 'break' from climbing, or as active rest. It's also a great tool for weight management and it does help keep me motivated when I'm all climbed-out.