Friday, November 11, 2011

Still Got It

So- all in all, the Horse Pens comp was a huge success. We all headed out to Alabama Friday afternoon and stayed with the Traylors. Annie had a great time running around their lakefront lawn and terrorizing their poor dog. Saturday morning started very early but Amie saw to it that our bellies were all filled with blueberry pancakes before sending us on our way to the boulderfield. Annie looked like the kid from the Christmas Story, wearing so many layers that locomotion was impossible. Luckily the day warmed up quickly and we were all able to shed some layers. It was great to greet the usual faces and introduce our daughter to this 'Triple Crown' community that we've been a part of for so long.

I was psyched to see Angie Payne and Kasia Pietras there: those two are always strong and inspiring so it was great to have some strong female energy around. Last year I went around the boulders with them during the comp, being entirely too pregnant to climb, to point out problems and beta. This year, I was back on the boulders. I started out strong- hoping to finish as many problems as I could before Annie's naptime. By my 7th completed problem, I took a break to feed Annie lunch and try and get her down for a nap. (This is when the day started getting a lot more difficult). Until that point, Annie (now 11 months) was having a great day playing with rocks, sticks, leaves and acorns and watching the crowds. Still, this was not the normal day at the crag and she would not take a nap for the life of me or my husband! She ended up taking a brief nap in the car but nothing substantial. As for me, the guns were empty and completing the final 3 problems was ROUGH. After spending some time in the prAna tent after the comp was over, we left before the awards ceremony with a very sleepy baby.

For having had very limited time to train and for it being my first competition back, I was proud of my performance (placing 2nd in women's open). The experience reaffirmed that I can be an athlete AND a mother- with balance, as with all things. Don't count me out yet, I believe I still have my best climbing days ahead of me! I don't have many photos from the comp, but Brett May was kind enough to send me these and video is coming- stay tuned ; )

Friday, November 4, 2011

Competition Comeback

So I'm staging a competition comeback. Who knows how far it will go, but I've got the bug again and I'll be going to Horse Pens 40 tomorrow to compete in the last leg of the Triple Crown. I route climbed throughout my pregnancy and started back not too long after delivery, but bouldering was something that was on pause for a LONG time. I started bouldering again a couple months ago and took Annie for her first bouldering trip the first cool day this fall. I really thought that after Annie competition climbing would be a thing of my past. I knew that finding the time to train would be difficult and when given the choice I will always choose playing and hanging out with the coolest little girl around over training. The crag, though, offers a perfect venue for both. Annie couldn't be any happier than she is when she’s outside. She’s earned the nickname ‘Acorn Annie’ for her affinity with anything that comes off a tree (leaves, sticks, and of course acorns).

Preparing for this competition has been a series of failures. For example, having the car packed & running warm ready to leave for a day of bouldering, only to realize when moving the sleeping baby from crib to carseat that she was coming down with croup. Or the many nights that I meant to go to the gym, but Kenneth had to work late or Annie wouldn’t go back to sleep for him. Or even the few times that I braved the climbing gym with Annie in tow who would have the time of her life tearing around the gym while little to no training was accomplished.

So this will certainly make things interesting tomorrow. I can honestly say I have no idea how I will climb. The last time I climbed at Horse Pens was two years ago and the last time I walked through the boulders was when I was 9 months pregnant with Annie. I do believe that 90% of climbing success is mental and I’m certainly going to rally some serious psych! Having a little lady along will certainly be inspiration and at least I know she’ll be happy that Horse Pens has plenty of acorns : )