Saturday, December 12, 2009

Climbing Out Of My Comfort Zone

Rock climbing is the only activity that I do that requires a little quiet time before I head out the door as I find myself trying to get centered before the main event.

I checked in and asked for a harness and shoes and the guy told me that I might want to consider buying a harness. Yeah, the thought did cross my mind especially since I seemed to have been bitten by the rock climbing bug. I also need some shoes. I'm good on the carabiner and ATC device. As long as Kam (reddish shirt) stays on his climbing hiatus, I'm going to keep his C & ATC.

Kam, thanks for the loaners.

For the last two Saturdays, there have been rock climbing classes which mean that some of the easier routes are roped off and I have been forced to climb out of my comfort zone.

It was kind of cold in Upper Limits but things quickly heated up. Patti (#21) suggested that I try a 5.8 which I had previously faltered on since I could not get over the hump. She pointed out all of the foot holds that you need to get up and over the little overhang. I think 80% is psychological she said. So, I tried it but really fell off the wall.
Patti told me that I had actually approached the route in the hardest manner and gave me more advice and, hot damn, I was able to make it up the Face Plant route. I left parts of fingernails but that's okay. And thanks to Patti for literally talking me up that route.

And guess what I wanted to do after the route? Plant my face in one of the bouldering mattresses. Good God, I was tuckered out!

So, what's a girl to do after finishing a 5.8? She tries to climb another one. I have to take my hat off to Patti who would not let me quit on the route. I was about three holds away from the top when I was, like, take; lower please. That route took just about everything that I had in me and I lost my grip and swung several times. I was confused for some time afterwards. Delirium, maybe, from all of that swinging.

Something had been puzzling Patti and she finally figured out what was going on when I was being lowered. She said that I was supposed to take my hand off the wall. Really now? Take means take your hands off the wall?

Yes, climbing is psychological because I had a hard time taking my hand of the wall to be lowered. It just seems safer to be able to, at least, have one hand, if not two, in contact with the wall.

I wasn't the only one having contact issues. One of the Rock Climbing 101 instructors asked this teenager to take his hand off the wall and the young climber wanted to know why. I was cracking up.

Here's some more climbing humor.

Adult to child: Do you know what ATC stands for?

Child: No Comment

Adult: Adam The Climber

Everybody wants to be a comedian.

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