Wednesday, 31 October 2007

Everywhere Aches

After the hectic w/end we had a delightfully quiet Monday. Gave the dogs a lovely walk - remarked that the forest park now shuts at 3:30pm due to the change in the clocks... 3.30! Pah.

Tuesday (30th) was all go. I knew I wanted to go for a run - anything between 4 miles and 10k. I mentioned this to TheO and she wanted to go to the gym and do a good indoor bike session. We made a plan, a plan based on me doing a long run.

7 miles in 10.35 pace all the way into town. I think my little legs were quite shocked. But the last two miles were the fastest so they didn't let me down. I'd only had toast for brekkie (normally I'd have porridge when doing anything over 10K) so sipped away at some Lucozade Sport before heading out. Managed to do the whole run without a gel - this was a big step forward for me; I just waited to see if I would need it - I didn't. A real first.

After a late lunch and a little rest we met up with Hermitina for Aquafit. It felt harder than last time (and my arms ached the next day signifying it really was harder) but maybe a run before hand will do that. There were loads of leg exercises too - more than last time, typical. We then went to the DCA for dinner - it was lovely. Simple food, good chat and a little cocktail to relax those aching muscles.

Today (31st) the plan was to have a rest day but TheO looked in good shape from the exertions of yesterday so I badgered to go climbing. A gentle nudge in the right direction. (I mean - my direction. :-) ) Called Avertical World again and luckily they did have an instructor free - Dave: The ambulance car medic doing Modern History at Uni whose 2nd job is climbing instructor! Obviously set to be an over-achiever. He was lovely to us - clearly explaining things and challenging us to some new and old routes.

We tackled a 3++ course after going round the walls at a low level to warm up the muscles. Luckily it was nice and easy. We were shown how to tie the basic 8 knot before you attach the rope to your harness and then a few points of finesse were given to us. Pah! Finesse - just getting up and clinging on for dear life were still my highest priorities.

We went and did the into-a-corner route (probably has some fancy-schmancy climbing name) and were told how to use your legs further apart across a corner and lean your head in to give your arms a break. Worked like a charm.

Now for my nemesis - the round-a-protruding-corner route. Last time I fell off one of these - some mental block about not being able to see my limbs. This time I made it up with only a tiny cheat on one coloured block. Bah. Still not very comfortable on this type of route. Dave was trying to get us to use the natural features and to grip with our feet. Progress on this was v slow for me - still like the nice safe holds. TheO was quite happy to trust the wall and put in some really great footwork. Dave was happy.

Then - after a tiny water break - we tacked the overhang we did last time. Piece of cake in comparison to the 3-4 goes it took me last time. Really pleased. Might have used a foothold from the wrong colour once (or twice)... keep telling myself I didn't cheat.

Our penultimate route was the hardest - a 5. Given that it goes up to 9C you can see that it's not that hard really. TheO suggested that 9C must be like: climbing up a polished block of ice; Dave corrected this and said, "an over-hanging polished block of ice!" So, something to never build up to there then! But, back to our route: It looked fairly innocuous but was a complete bastard. You had to keep tiny weeny hand holds (to a beginner) and practically hoist your legs to armpit level whilst not falling. It took forever - and I had to cheat using some of the other route handholds. Challenging but fun. My thighs - already slightly achy after the run and aqua-fit - are not going to be thanking me tomorrow.

After this Dave took us back to a nice easy route and suggested we use some finesse to get up it. I dragged my now weary carcass skyward merely happy not to be balancing on a penny. He then declared that (despite TheO's view that my belaying sucked) we were competent to become members. Result! We got our membership, discount cards, and wended our way homewards happy but exhausted.

Tomorrow we REST!

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