No Pain No Gain
If everything was easy nothing would be a challenge. If we could fly we wouldn’t bother climbing; the harder the challenge the bigger the buzz. Failure hurts, but without failure there is no success. Without failure there is no need to work hard to gain success.
A few weeks ago I was on an 8c. On-sight. It went well. Hard moves read right, total commitment when it counted. After 40 metres I reached the last move, just an undercut separating me from the final finishing jug. This close to the top, this close to glory, I had to make the move count. It had to work. But it felt low percentage. Two minutes or more I was there, calculating the easiest method before suddenly pumping out and sagging on the rope without even getting the chance of glory! And only then did the obvious sequence come plainly into view. So blatant and easy.
A few hours later on the redpoint it was easy. But that had meant nothing, a hollow victory, as was the onsight of an 8b+ I did another hour after that. These were levels I’d reached before. 8c onsight was not. It was painful. It kept me awake at night. But it kicked my ass. I need to gain. There isn’t time for sitting comfortably and patting myself on the back. It’s time to work hard and make it count.
A few days later and of course the pain is gone. New movement over new routes clearing the mind. But the memory is there. A seed planted that says ‘work hard’ rather than ‘work is over’. I’d have sat back for sure, but now I was still pushing. I opted for another 8c. ‘Amistad’. It looked bouldery and it was. Maybe 8a into a hard section over a short roof. I was nearly off, but it felt easier. Too easy for 8c maybe? The guide said it was 8c, the locals said it was. Four repeaters confirmed the grade. I wasn’t sure. The cigars didn’t get passed round. I’m still not in the gang. But I had a taste and I know I’m allowed in. I just need to put in some work and make a few gains. It might hurt, but it will be worth it!
on Amistad at the amazing Ventanas of Rodellar