Well… less than a week until school starts again, and it’s a bummer that the weather is being so sad.
I’m definitely starting experience some of that back to school panic… that ball of anxiety sitting in my stomach that makes me want to vomit. It is going to be a busy semester and I’m straight scared I’m not going to be able to get outside which leads to me getting really, really sad.
One more year, I just have to pull it together and get psyched to graduate.
I climbed again yesterday which probably wasn’t the best decision. My finger is definitely feeling a little sore today… not awful, but not as good as it was before. I am not climbing today and will be doing routes on Tuesday and Wednesday so I will see how it feels… probably will avoid anything too crazy crimpy.
Beat the Heat was alright, I made finals which I am happy about but was a little disappointed with the finals climbs, ESPECIALLY because there was money on the line. Oh well, onto the next adventure!
Tomorrow I am taking care of a couple more appointments and then am going down to Charlottesville to grab some gear and clean up the apartment a little bit for my roommate to move in. Then hopefully I’ll make it to West Virginia before it gets dark so I can set up my tent in the light… or I might just totally fail in the dark.
I plan on climbing at the New both Tuesday and Wednesday, then Wednesday evening I will head to Boone for a few days. I’ve thought about the money aspect… driving back and forth between the New and Boone, but I have a free place to crash in Boone so I’m really only spending like $10 extra to drive to Boone if I stay there 4 nights (because AAC is $7/night, $28 total vs. $40 of gas). Then I’ll head back to the New for another week until class starts.
As silly as this seems… I’ve never really camped for an extended period of time. Really just 1-2 nights at a time. So I’m kind of nervous! Will I succeed as a dirtbag?! Only time will tell 😮 I’ve got myself a little pot to cook in and lots of rice and beans and tuna and crackers. Let’s get it!
I climbed both Tuesday and yesterday in order to prep for Beat the Heat. On Tuesday, I did routes for endurance then did some moves on the systems board. Yesterday, I went to Alexandria and got some of my bouldering confidence back and got reminded of what it means to be powerful… It was a really good and necessary session.
Now I am taking two full rest days which I haven’t done in a while it seems, so hopefully I will be feeling really good on Saturday. Regardless of whether I make finals or not, it should be a fun time! Today was glorious… slept until noon, chilled for a bit, then napped again. I feel like I had some serious catching up to do on sleep.
Currently scrounging around for some partners at the New. I should be headed back there on Monday after a dentist appointment. Still don’t know where I’m staying yet… so that’s fun but I’ll just get myself a tent and crash at the AAC campground if need be.
Made it through the week and now I am back the New for my birthday! There is nothing I would rather be doing than climbing on my birthday.
- Last day of work potentially Monday (8/4), if not, then Wednesday (8/6)
- Head home for the rest of the week, Beat the Heat next Saturday (8/9)
- Take care of a couple more appointments, then back to the New for an extended period! (8/11)
- Classes start 8/26
A Favorite Passage From Arno Ilgner’s The Rock Warrior’s Way
Early in our lives we are taught to be competitive and value achievement and results. We are encouraged to “make something of ourselves” or to “get ahead.” The emphasis is on a future destination, for which we will sacrifice the satisfaction of the present. ironically, once we arrive at a destination–landing that sought-after job, climbing that 5.12 grade–we find it’s not a final destination at all. We aren’t satisfied to stay there. We may even look nostalgically to the passion we possessed when we considered that destination a magical promised land, before we realized it was simply the end of a journey…
The destination mentality is the way of life in normal society, and we tend to adopt it by default in situations of acute stress and discomfort. When we come to an uncomfortable climbing situation, a strenuous offwidth crack climb for example, we immediately look up to determine where the effort will end. Seeing only ten feet until we can rest, we may feel energized, completely capable of moving up. If we see fifty feet of effort, however, we’re demoralized and can’t summon the will to move up that same ten feet. That ten feet of climbing is the same in the second situation, but we are different. Our attention has moved out of the challenge and into the future. If we could remain focused on climbing–the journey–then we wouldn’t sabotage our effort with anxiety about the distance to a destination. Often, that ten feet of effort will lead to new knowledge that we won’t discover if we give in to discomfort…
The destination mindset is also responsible for “failure” and “success” anxieties… You may experience success anxiety. This mindset isn’t negative like failure anxiety, but it still distracts precious attention away form the moment. When you get past a crux and “success” is in sight, you become protective of your effort up to that point, as if somehow it could be lost. You become detached from the process and attached to the reward you expect if you finish the whole climb. “don’t blow it,” you say to yourself.
At this point, you’re no longer interested in the act of climbing; you just want to have climbed the route. You get to the crux, or past the crux, and anxiety sets in, a fear of losing the success you’ve imagined is nearly yours. Obviously your attention is not working to your advantage here. You are focused negative on not losing an ascent you have not yet even finished.