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Training hard and the best of the women's symposium comes to Sheffield!

26 Jan 2013

So I said to Tom, that I could manage about 3 climbing sessions a week. Hmmn then he doubled it. My latest training plan is from my friend Tom Randall based in Sheffield. You may have heard about him from his wide crack exploits, but he is also very knowledgeable on the training side of things.

I started training on New Year's Day (an unprecedented event!) and after one week of training found myself in bed with a cold - AGAIN - my third in about 2 months. This meant that when I was better I had to re-do week 1 and now I find myself at the end of week 2................ of a 6 month training plan................. and I already feel pretty broken.

But there is one good reason for doing a training plan set by someone else. Set it for yourself and you are likely to do one of 2 things: make it too easy or make it too hard. I have done both of these things for myself in the past. So it is good to know that someone is keeping an eye on things for me.

So it seems that I have more like 7 sessions to complete each week, saying that most of them are very short, so it is possible to complete 2 in one session. The only problem is that I feel fairly broken off just one of these individual sessions. I frequently question why I am putting myself through all this, but my desire surpasses any kind of logic.  My husband Nic is also training hard and fitting in both our sessions sits on a knife edge of organisation.  You can only try...

Like last year, I'm aiming to do local Peak sport climbing. But my major weakness really shone through once again last year. While I got stronger, my fitness still lagged in the doldrums and I am attacking it once and for all with a vengeance.  Aching is a pretty common feeling; I just need my body to start getting used to this workload.  Something tells me it won’t.

So whether this year ever dries out is still unknown.  What is known though is that I have a flight booked to Margalef in Spain in early March.  WITHOUT A SMALL CHILD.  Yes!  10 days uninterrupted climbing is hardly imaginable right now.  Anticipation levels are high.

Meanwhile if you are lacking any kind of psyche, inspiration or just want to find out more how the top women got to the top, get down to the Shaff Women’s expert night on 7th FebThe line up includes Shauna Coxsey (third in the world and British Bouldering Champion), Fran Brown (World para climbing champion), Lucy Creamer (trad meister along with everything else involving climbing and rock) and more.  I will most certainly be going.

For a video about the Women's Symposium click here http://vimeo.com/54950782

Rock Action 2013

21 Jan 2013

So here are the details about this year's Rock Action course for young people.  To find out more about the course click on the picture!  Get in touch to find out more

Rock Action 2013 for young climbers

Training with Rab Carrington

04 Jan 2013

As I mentioned in a previous blog, my latest training plan is for someone in their 60s.  Rab didn't like it put like that.  Sorry Rab, but the fact is, Rab (jackets Rab) is 65.  And that means he has to train differently.  There is no point Rab training in the same way as someone aged 20 or 30 something.  The body, when it ages, requires different kinds of training to make a difference.

Rab rotator cuff   In this exercise Tim is showing Rab how to improve the function of his rotator cuff. A very tight lat is restricting Rab's movement.

Aerobically, actually you can respond better than someone a lot younger.  However that isn't the area Rab needs to work on.  Fitness has never been a problem, however strength and power (speed of movement) is.  Knowing how to address Rab's plan was/is a challenge for me as this is all new.  I have done a lot of reading recently, and clear areas for mature athletes are highlighted as being important: flexibility and general conditioning.

Rab chest press   Using this piece of equipment, Rab can work against bodyweight resistance, whilst incorporating the instability of the slings

And if you have climbed for a long time, no doubt you won't have addressed either one of those terribly well - because let's face it, climbers like climbing and not much else.

So, to help me with the strength and conditioning side I asked Tim Cunnington (who also does my sports massages) of Peak Pro Fitness.  Tim is an expert in this area and as a climber himself he understands the requirements of our body.  I have been to gyms before and the staff look at you clueless when you say you're a climber.  So it's great to speak to someone with that kind of expertise who knows what a climber needs.

Yesterday Tim, Rab and I met up to look at some of the exercises Rab needs to do (see attached pictures) to get his body working and moving correctly in order to then move on and work on strength and power.

Rab reverse lunge   This reverse one legged lunge is good for ankle stability, balance and core.

It's going to be interesting to see how Rab progresses.  5 years ago Rab climbed his first 8a!  But since then, things haven't been as easy as he has increasingly felt his strength diminish. Now for the first time ever Rab has decided to follow a training plan.  Let's see how it all goes!

It is good for me working with another kind of professional, great to learn new things.  Working in a team, like other therapists do or other sports must surely be the way forward.  Thanks Tim for all your help!

PS if any of you want specific strength and conditioning advice get in touch with Tim at http://www.peakprofitness.com/.