|Retiring Legend Markus Bendler|
The last few months has been quite an eye opener, I've become increasingly focused on competition climbing. A bit of a departure from my usual Scottish winter fare, but in some ways quite a welcome one.
Training for Scottish winter has always been a bit of a dark art, it's very difficult to taper your training to an completely unspecified date. Conditions being what they are, my dream route options are rarely in condition and never when you want them to be which often leaves frustration. Being based down near Manchester compounds the problem as it's not as if I can just nip out on the off chance, and with petrol prices being so high it's almost cheaper to fly out to the Alps than it is to drive to Scotland!
So this winter has so far been a mixture of the World Cup events in Saas Fee, Rabenstein (Italy) and Busteni (Romania) and sneaking routes in between. Unfortunately this winter has also seen me come down with a proper good dose of not being able to breathe and mostly coughing my lungs out! So far the coughing has gone on for nearly 4 weeks, I'm on my second set of antibiotics (stronger ones this time apparently!) and the training regime has gone to pot! It's difficult to try hard when breathing is an effort. I'm also taking my own advice from past experience, training with a chest infection is only going to make it worse.
I've learned heaps over the last 3 rounds. I've learned about how to look after myself - Travel Kettle essential! I've learned about route reading.....the main problem being that I've almost always fallen off at the point where I stopped trying to work it out in the preview time. I think this is mostly due to my own lack of belief about how far I'm going to get, and maybe a little bit to do with my drawing skills not being quick enough! So on the shopping list is also some better binoculars to get a better view. (And no before anyone suggests a camera, they aren't allowed!)
|Lucie Hrozova winning her first World Cup|
Busteni last weekend was a real step forward in terms of performance, I actually felt like I climbed somewhere near my ability. The final round is in 3 weeks in Russia and I'm determined to have full lung capacity and do myself proud.
Bring on Kirov and 2014.
Fingers crossed I'll get something done before Russia, come on drugs do your stuff!