This morning I woke up by a text message on my phone. Until now I haven’t replied yet to my friend. Here’s my answer: Yes, soon we’ll go climbing together at Amsterdam!
Next I packed my bags and fixed some breakfast. Usually I don’t eat much in the morning and nor did I eat much today. I’ve had a French croissant from the oven which was pretty satisfying to my stomach.
Anyway, today is the kickoff for the National lead competition at Nieuwegein. On my way to the climbing gym I ate a banana and a Powerbar so I can rock the wall during climbing.
Last Friday I went to 2 climbing gyms to solve some problems for the Upload competition. My fingers are still tired. The skin on top of my fingers are red and kind of moist! Today I was hoping that I wouldn’t have to pinch that much however when I arrived the climbing gym, our first route was filled with sloper holds.
Last year I managed to end up in the top 10 of the National Lead Championship. Because of that result, I won’t have to climb the qualifications. The top 10 are advanced to the semis. The men’s semis was a green route in rope number 4. Most of the holds are from Bleaustone and as mentioned before the holds looks like huge jugs.
I try to warm up properly by climbing easy routes. Then all of us (semi placed climbers) are sent to the isolation area where we’ll be informed by routesetters and judges. Suddenly the door opens and a guy serves me my toast because I was hungry. What a great service. Anyway, there are few exceptions for this route. Among everyone, I was the final climber. I was number 14 on the list…
An hour later it finally was my turn. I’m entering the social world again. I walk up the stairs and take a good look at the route. I’m staying on the red path to give a good look at the route because once you step off the red carpet you’ll have to start climbing within 40 seconds.
Okay, I’m ready and start my way up. The holds are pretty positive despite the state of my sore fingers.
There are moments in the route where I have to stand on my toes to reach the next hold. Somewhere below the top, I can’t really figure out the right sequence. It feels like I grabbed the holds with my wrong hand but I prepared it that way.
I don’t like this and try to go to a sidepull with my right hand. Unfortunately it doesn’t work out and 10 seconds later I’m standing on the floor.
The results are official and my score is just enough to get me a final spot. The ladies will climb first followed by men. During the briefing we agree to witness the ladies’ finals. At least we won’t have to spend time in the isolation area. For me that’s a huge relief, sitting in the isolation for another hour is a waste of time. A competition should be fun!
During the ladies’ finals I’m going to climb. I don’t want to cool down. My fingers are still sore but okay. My legs are a bit stiff due to an Upload problem and my arms could do better.
After the ladies’ finals I will be the first to climb the finals. It’s a black route on the mainwall. I’m going all out from the start.
In the overhang I’m holding a big jug around the corner with my right hand. I can sense that the hold is quite benky* or my hand is just sweaty.
Alright, my hand is probably sweaty and when I’m going for the next hold, my right hand slips off the jug just like that! That’s it, that was hold number 14 and I deserve a + because I was trying to get the next hold.
I hate this moment. I’m standing on the floor looking at the route while I remove the rope from my harness. I’m not even pumped and yet I’m standing on the floor.
I’m walking away disappointed while the next climber is starting his moment. My score sucks so bad that I ended up last of all the finalists.
When I think back at this competition from today, I think I climbed like shit. On the other hand, I did advance to the finals which is a positive thing. Oh well, it wasn’t that much of a successful start of the lead season for me but I’m going to train really hard to make up for this!