Foundry Climbing Centre Winter Bouldering League

It was supposed to be Ladies Night at the Foundry Climbing Centre on Monday night. Unfortunately, the two people who I had arranged to climb with couldn’t make it. This meant that I didn’t have anyone to rope climb with. It so happened that the Foundry Winter Bouldering League (#TFWBL) was on. I decided to ‘enter’ so I could at least do something after coming down.

It was fairly quiet when I started warming up, but by the time I was ready to do some actual pulling, the wall was rammed. I flashed all the L1s that were set and I really wanted to try some of the L2s. The only one that I tried I cruised until the final move, which ended with a very stretched top move. It’s in the same part of the wall that I’ve trouble with before when topping out. I wish the setters would figure out a way of making the moves interesting for taller people, but not absolutely terrifying for those vertically challenged. I did want to try the problem again but I was getting pretty cold, and it didn’t look like I would get a chance.

I went into the other room and played on the 45 degree board for a while. At least until my wrist and middle finger started to hurt. After climbing on Friday I noticed a small lump in my middle finger’s A2 pulley on my left hand. It didn’t hurt that much on Friday, but was still noticeable. After climbing on Monday it started to hurt a bit more. I decided to leave it and go home.

In sum, the session wasn’t that productive, but I did get to move and the new problems look pretty fun. I’m looking forward to playing on them on Friday.

Some stats:

  • Topped 6 L1s
  • Dropped last move on 1 L2
  • Played for a bit
  • Hurt my finger



25/09/2013 Mistake: blogtember challenge

Wednesday, September 25: Write about a time you screwed up – a mistake you made.

I’d like to think that I never screw up, make mistakes, or every do anything wrong. However, that would be a complete and utter lie! I make plenty of mistakes, and often they’re rectifiable and so slight that nothing much happens.

However, with my chosen sports, mistakes often occur when tired and as a result of a split second lapse of concentration, or slight wobble over which path to make/take, and can result in pretty horrible injuries.

One of the most annoying mistakes of recent times was my decision to campus train when tired and at the end of a session. This in itself wasn’t such a terrible thing, and I actually put in a pretty good session. However, since then, my middle finger has been tweaky at best and downright painful at worst. I had hoped that after two weeks off and a completely rest, my finger would be better. Unfortunately that’s not been the case. At the first session back after my holiday I tried to pull on and the pain was but, but even more so!

Photo: CanadianKate

Photo: CanadianKate

After taping up and climbing slowly, the pain lessened. However, I think it will take a very long time for my finger to heal completely. I tried climbing today as well, and sticking to easy problems with little risk of slipping or crimping hard, I could complete a fair number before the pain started.

Moral of the story: if tired, don’t push yourself!


More wasps and a big ol’ grump

It was just one of those things. I was tired, the wasps are HARD and I wasn’t that psyched. Thinking back, I didn’t warm up that much and I think this affected how well I could climb. I was finding the problems tall, the holds slopey and the moves weren’t clicking. The fact that the OH was swanning up them didn’t help. In the end, I gave up and changed focus. I started linking a 7a on the training board and managed to make almost one full completion! This is not a good thing – I think I need to improve my endurance.

So, Friday’s session was not a winning one. Nothing clicked, and the more I couldn’t do things (well, found them hard) the less I could rationalise with myself that it was okay. I started getting tight chested, and really angry at myself. I shouldn’t find the wasps hard! They’re supposedly set a level that I should supposedly do – or at least everyone says that I should be able to do. No matter that I find the style of climbing very foreign, and I don’t really get on with the holds – I should still be able to do the problems in a couple of tries! These were all the things that were going on in my head. That, and trying to take a step back and try different moves. In the end, I just wanted to finish. I considered lowering my sights and doing an easier circuit, but I wasn’t sure that I was even in the mood for that.

After a while of not enjoying myself, I decided to do some strength and core exercises. I did core first, and then considered doing some campus board training, or finger boarding. However, my A2 pulley had started to make its presence known on jugs and crimps during the session. This meant that I backed off and decided to wait a while longer before commencing training again.

In conclusion, I don’t think either me or the wasps won that night.

Some Stats (such as they are)

  • Climbed about 4 warm-up problems
  • Attempted 7 wasps. I mainly dropped the top moves or the penultimate move:
  1. One problem dropped as I have a very tight lower back and it inhibits certain planes of movement
  2. One problem dropped as I can’t seem to work out feet to ‘pop’ for hold
  3. One problem dropped as it’s a very long pop to ‘okay’ hold, difficult to match and then another sideways pop to top hold
  4. One problem uncompleted as I was tired. And grumply. Mainly that.

I have a poorly finger

I’m not sure if anyone has been able to tell, but I’ve been getting bored training recently. This often happens in the summer because of the heat and the fewer re-sets at the bouldering wall.At the moment, the wall has a super hard set and that means that either I have to swallow my pride and climb L1s (which are still quite hard, but mainly on big jugs) or keep battling on with the L2s. I’ve not even looked at the L3s! The heat is really difficult to climb in and saps any excitement or enthusiasm out of me as soon as I step into the Foundry. I feel as if I’m climbing into a tub of slightly chalky molasses and generally start getting sulky. I don’t think that it helps that I’ve been working hard recently.

We try to climb outside a lot during the summer, but the weather has not been helpful this year. I love the heat, but it’s really crap to climb in. I think I’m also fatigued. Work is very hard. I’ve re-written (pretty much from scratch) 3 chapters in the last 2 months and will have another one done by the end of August. This is mentally draining, so by the time Wednesday evening rolls along, I’m lacking in mental fortitude to throw myself at hard boulder problems. All I really want to do is fairly low difficulty, high volume sessions on a Wednesday, but the Foundry isn’t really geared towards that at the moment.

I’ve also been suffering with a tight shoulder/neck and the lats on my right side. This has been manageable with lots of warming up and mobilisation exercises. I find rolling on a foam roller is really helpful and helps manage the tightness. However, I’ve now started feeling tweaks in my left middle finger, both on slopers and crimps, which sounds a lot like an A2 pulley injury. It’s not too bad yet, and manageable with taping it up, but I’m definitely going to stop campusing for a while and work on core.

So, on Wednesday, I warmed up fairly slowly and then tried some problems that I’ve not yet managed to top. I didn’t feel like trying some that I had topped because I figured that if I couldn’t do any of them, then my enjoyment would really be challenged. That said, I did manage to dial a sequence for a problem that I’ve been trying for a while. I now need to focus on the top section which is a strange, off-balance flick off a high foot and not great right hand hold to a not great (but good enough) left hold. I tried this flick many times on Wednesday, and I kept getting to about 2 inches from the top of the hold before falling off. It needs both shoulder and a bit of leg push to get the height and with my foot so high up, I’m finding it difficult to engage my butt to make the push. Once I’ve done it once or twice, I think I’ll understand the move better and be able to replicate it more. Whether that will help me get the problem is another matter!

I’m trying to be more mindful when climbing and enjoying the individual moves a bit more rather than deciding that I’ve only achieved something when I reach the top of the climb. So, in some ways I still achieved something on Wednesday. Diane said that I was climbing hard and trying hard moves, which makes me feel a bit better about the day. On the whole, I need to rethink my training plan for Wednesdays and accept the fact that right now I’m knackered and work around that. I’m not even bothering to include stats for Wednesday because I didn’t really achieve anything. Not even some core!

Here are some links to websites about A2 pulley injuries:

Here are some good websites for general climbing rehab:

A possible A2 pulley injury. I’ve taped it up and it felt better when supported. Photo: Canadiankate