Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Mind Over Matter. But Not Really

What's going on right now.

You can skip this bit.

I came down with a slight illness again so I decided to leave the climbing gym early last night. I rested early and I feel brand new again.

This happened to me a few times before but I'm not really a fast learner. But this time, I plan to learn for good as I am getting older and cannot push my body as much as I used to before.

What I've been doing.

You can also skip this bit.

So here's the deal. I've been trying to stay in competitive cycling shape. At the same time, I have been training consistently at the gym and been climbing outdoors as much as I can. That's because I plan to climb a 5.12 route before the year ends. 5.12 is climber-speak for "really serious climbing for an amateur," something I aspire to be.

Reason for this post.


The whole point of this post is to teach you that there is only so much your body can take and your mind should stop bullying your body. Here are my non-pro tips that I assume to be useful.

1. Rest when you feel like it, it's part of training.

Rest makes me edgy and it makes me feel I'm missing out. So whenever I feel to rest on my non-rest day, I first head to the gym and get a feel of what my body is up to. If I'm not able to do the things I'm usually able to do, then I take the day off.

2. Alternate workouts.

If you are into more than one thing, it might be best to alternate training days. For example, train for cycling on Monday and rock climbing on Tuesday, and so on. I wrote "might" because I think I will try out my own advice this week and see how it works.

I will update you as soon as I see if this works for me. But don't hang on to my words.

Although human beings essentially share the same source code, our daily circumstances can vary greatly, which affects the predictably of my training program's success when applied to your own regime. In other words, try things out yourself.

3. Don't eat pork.

I still have to do more research on this but my performance seems to have improved since I've cut down on pork.

4. Alternate training alone and training with buddies.

Training with stronger/better athletes will push your performance. But it might make you unaware that you're pushing yourself too hard. It's okay for pro athletes to beat themselves into pulp because what they do is all they do (this is not meant to be demeaning, especially that I'm a huge fan of people who eat pain for dessert).

But, after you train in the morning, you have to go to your nine-to-five job. You just don't have enough time to mentally and physically recover.

Sometimes, you need to step back from the crowd and train on your own to be able to hear what your body is telling you.

5. Don't snap that photo.

If the main reason you're taking that photo is to pat your ego, then don't.

There's this guy named Les Stroud whom I admire a lot. In a way, he is the ultimate selfie guy. He goes into isolated wilderness by himself and films everything on his own. He would leave a camera by a path, go down that path, and walk back up to retrieve the equipment.

Basically, he spends so much effort doing and undoing things so he could tell the world about it. But I'm okay with it. In fact, I am glad he did those things for his show, Survivor Man, because there was a real purpose behind it: to EDUCATE. And in the process, he has instilled in me a certain awe and reverence for nature; and a respect for my limitations.

I'm saying, the time you spend to shoot photos is a time off your thing. Put experience above your false sense of celebrity status. We already know how you look like with the camera two feet away from your face. Take your next selfie after five years (some Chinese culture believe that the human face only undergoes dramatic changes every five years).


Adrenaline Romance said...

"Sometimes, you need to step back from the crowd and train on your own to be able to hear what your body is telling you."

We agree. We are not competitive climbers; we compete with ourselves. We climb for fun, passion, and exercise. That's why we never ever compete with others or force ourselves to listen and give in to other climbers' coercion (or derision).

We don't join the high-and-mighty crowd and simply climb at our own pace and enjoyment.

Bal Marsius said...

I actually compete with other climbers because I'm strong enough to compete.

My point is, training alone improves focus, independence, and awareness.

Adrenaline Romance said...

That's great, Bal. You have become a really good climber.

And yes, we agree that training alone (i.e. with a climbing partner, of course) improves a lot of things.

Bal Marsius said...

No. I meant training alone like, by yourself. With no one else. That's something you can do safely indoors, at your home or in the gym.


I've never been derided or coerced by any climber before, especially here in Cebu. Climbers are respectful, they respect other climbers by default. You don't even have to earn it but you can lose it if they see that you're more of a poser than a climber. Two cents.

Adrenaline Romance said...

Ah, okay. We get understand what you mean by training alone now. :)

Adrenaline Romance said...

But, Bal, just being curious: how exactly is one considered a poser in the climbing community?

You see, that poser concept is something new and disconcerting to us. Generally, we (us) in the climbing community don't define any climber---whether first-timer, novice, or advanced---as a poser since we all see each other in action.

So the idea of a "poser" climber is something unusual.

Bal Marsius