Top 10 Tuesday – Training Jamz

Despite being a delinquent blogger, my climbing psych and training for climbing psych remain high. Here are 10 songs that help me stay psyched to crush my workout or create an ambiance of psych on the drive to the boulderfield.


1. Chimes – Hudson Mohawke
Cam’s absolute favorite. It just sounds like a bouldering video. It basically fills your veins with psych.


2. Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars
Don’t hate just because it’s Bruno Mars! You know you love to get your groove on.


3. Lay Your Cards Out – POLICA
Not quite as punchy and upbeat as the rest, but melodic and sexy enough to make up for it. For sure to help you get your flow on for the enduro proj.


4. Girls – Slow Magic
Basically the beat you want to have in your head for the rest of the day.


5. Hero – Frank Ocean, Mick Jones, Paul Simonon, Diplo
Fact: I love soul music. This song hits all the right soul elements while making you feel like you can take on the world.


6. OctaHate – Ryn Weaver
If ever get filmed sending a hard boulder, this is the song I want in the video. Thanks in advance.


7. Pistols at Dawn – Seinabo Sey
Complete with an epic intro and a slow build up, after listening to to this song you can face your greatest fear. I promise.


8. Bad Habit – The Kooks
A little more rock & roll than the rest of the list. Bad ass with a beat you’ll want to hear again.


9. Drop the Game – Flume and Chet Faker
Cam doesn’t like this one, but I don’t let that get me down. Dark, spooky, and lush.


10. Hey Mami – Sylvan Esso
If you haven’t heard of Sylvan Esso, do yourself a favor and get on it. “Hey Mami” is rad, but honestly the whole album is just as good. Without a doubt my album of the year.

What is your current climbing psych music?


The Rock Climber’s Training Manual: Review and Reflections

If you’re a climber, especially one psyched about training, there is a good chance you have heard about Mark and Mike Andersons’ The Rock Climber’s Traning Manual. rctm-cover-spread_finalThere is no shortage of positive reviews out there on the interwebs. However, only a few of the reviews are from people who in addition to reading the book also followed one of the training plan all the way through before writing the review.

Currently it seems like training for rock climbing is becoming much more popular for climbers of all levels. The amount of available information on training for climbing is increasing. I am certainly riding the wave of training excitement and was incredibly excited to get my hands on a copy of the Andersons’ book back in July.

Although I have been climbing for about 1o years at this point (seriously!?!), I had never really trained. Living in NC the climbing season is nearly year-round so, I never really developed a climbing season vs. training season mindset. I’ve always  been a climb outside as much as possible and go to the gym when you can’t climb outside sort of person. This set-up has allowed me to slowly progress over many years, develop decent movement, gain valuable rock reading abilities, and love the shit out of climbing. But it has also allowed me to develop some serious deficits and over the last 2 years I have really struggled to continue to improve. Hence a new plan: TRAINING!

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Everything and More: Bouldering Kit Part 2 (Tactics)

Sure, I want to be stronger, but that takes long hours and hard work.

Most of the time I just want the climb I’m working on to feel better.

That is where tactics come in…. climbing smarter when climbing harder just isn’t possible.

There a lots of things tactically that climbers do intrinsically or with practice (ex: RESTING between attempts?!?) to improve their chances of sending the proj but most of them just involve using their brain rather than an actual tool out of the bouldering kit. However, there is one tactical implement I want to highlight:

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ThOP ThEN Thursday: What I’ve Learned Hangboarding (so far)

Pure Sex...

Pure Sex… My sweet set up

Aside: I’m a relatively inexperienced hangboarder. I just finished my 10th hangboard workout ever while following the Andersons’ Rock Climber’s Training Manual program (more on my experience training later).

1. Set up a pulley system to remove weight.  Using the right amount of weight so that all the reps can be completed with the last 2 being hard as shit is critical for getting the most out of a session.

2. Wear a chalk bag. 3 to 5 second rests between reps are stupid short if you need to chalk.

3. Psych music is critical. Dancing during long rests is optional but recommended.

4. Have a good timer; find one that makes noise so you don’t have to look at it. (a short post on my favorite free timer app is forthcoming).

5. There are different kinds of climbing pump: big muscle fatigue and finger flexor fatigue. Training finger strength unexpectedly improved my endurance.

6. Yoga and arm circles are a decent warm up for hangboarding.

7.  Writing while pumped makes my handwriting reminiscent of a 5 year old’s. However, keeping detailed records of weight removed/added, reps completed, and goals for the next session is incredibly motivating.

8.  Summoning the “grrr” is a skill that can be practiced and improved. The same try-hard I need to complete the last rep of my least favorite grip is the same try hard I can summon while actually climbing.

9. I’m more of a masochist than I thought. Every second of a 1/4 pad crimp digging into my fingers with music blasting is a special kind of joy.

10. If your hangboard is next to your sink do the dishes (with gloves on!!!) before your workout. The smells of old curry and greek yogurt are not psych inducing.



Everything and More: Bouldering Kit Part 1 (Basics)

Bouldering is rad.


So, the quote above might be misattributed, I’ll look into that later. Regardless bouldering is gymnastic, powerful, and simple in its complexity: rock, shoes, chalk, movement, and focus.

But this post isn’t about that side of bouldering; it’s about all the cool shit you can bring with you into the woods to be an ultimate bouldering geek and (maybe?!?) improve your climbing.

Now understand, this isn’t trad climbing or some big wall ascent. There are no cams, nuts, slings, or haul bags full of who know what else. It’s not about safety, it’s about decreasing your chuffer status and using tactics to send boulders!

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