Last night after about a year without climbing I finally returned to the sport and I saw a familiar face but I couldn’t remember why. Eventually, I remembered that it was Cedric Lachat. I remember him from some climbing videos I watched. I also saw many of my climbing friends.
On the first belay I made sure to remember all the skills. It had been a while but when you’ve belayed hundreds of people the skills have become muscle memory. What was less comfortable were the first two climbs. When you haven’t climbed in a while you have to get used to being high above the ground and trusting that you took care of fixing your equipment correctly. I did so I continued climbing.
By the third and fourth climbs I felt more comfortable getting back to climbing up to 6a for three quarters of a route before not trusting myself on a move three or four moves from the top.
As I haven’t climbed in so long I thought that I would be rusty but this is due to two or three outdoor climbs where conditions are diferent. You don’t have colour coded rocks to show you the route.
I think that watching pros climb has helped, I think that cycling for hours a week has helped and I think that lifting a fifteen kilo weight in a number of different ways has also helped. Cycling really strengthens the leg muscles and improves the cardiovascular system and lifting a 15kg weight works arm, shoulder and back muscles.
The biggest difference when I was climbing yesterday is that I had brand new shoes, shoes that I had used for climbing just once before. Whenever I went climbing before I was using old shoes that were worn and had holes in them as they were hand me downs from friends. I had plenty of grip and for once they were tight.
This morning I tried riding around Watopia. Previously I had tried GCN training sessions with the indoor trainer but as I had no power meter I had to guess that I was making the right effort and guess that the pedalling rate was correct. With
The aim of this training session was to produce 130 watts of power for 3 minutes, rest and then repeat this 10 times for a training session duration of 50 minutes. I liked that it provides you with a window of power within which to stay for the required periods of time. It is useful to have a window within which to stay because there is a little lag between the power it requires you to alternate between and what the sensors detect. It works better for efforts lasting for more than a few seconds as you synchronise the power produced to the power you’re aiming for.
If you want a more detailed look at Zwift’s features you can click on the video below.