I’ve recently read a few blog posts, tweets and actually talked with other climbers in person about a subject I find rather familiar in the climbing world. Whether or not to push your limits.?
Let’s face it, when your rock climbing, your either pushing your limits, or static. When you first started climbing, you were pushing your limits weren’t you? Most people don’t send the introductory route. How did it go? A friend asked you if you wanted to go rock climbing, you agreed, and off you went. When you got to the crag, you were like “we’re going to climb THAT?” You probably struggled, maybe even gave up and threw in the towel after 20′? Walked away thinking ‘rock climbing is really too hard?’
Most likely you were Syked no matter how you did. Isn’t that what led you back to the rock? Again and again? The desire to divide and conquer. You worked harder, you figured it out, eventually you crushed that beginner route that first told you to “come back when your ready”. And you moved on…
Why? If you were happy just being outdoors, why not just go to same crag? Why not just Crush… Crush… Crush… Why challenge yourself with new, interesting and unfamiliar routes? What’s the point? Grades aren’t your thing anyways right?
The truth is, the human spirit desires challenge. That’s why we strive to learn, to move forward to promote at out jobs. That why we have all competed at some point in our lives, whether it be rock climbing or spelling bees. We yearn to see how far we can go, how much we can take… We reach to better ourselves. It’s in our nature, it is why we live. Complacency is death. Boredom. We fear it… At least I do.
How does this pertain to rock climbing you ask? Well I ask you, why not push your limits? Why not improve, move on, expand your array of climbing? Why not try harder, work harder? If you’re climbing 5.9 right now, sending… You should be trying 5.10. End of discussion. Sorry, it’s how I feel. Move forward. Move up. I’m not accusing you of being weak, but I am accusing you of not pushing your potential. Not trying to your ability.
When you do this, you will find that not only have you expanded the amount of routes you are capable of trying. You have more than doubled them most likely. You will find you have the goods to achieve far more than you ever dreamed possible.
For years, climbing plateaued at 5.14D, until someone dreamed big. Now 5.15 seems to be the norm. Are these rating legit? Well they must be, because only a handful of people can conquer them. And I say thank you! You have given the future something to shoot for, something to desire, something to accomplish… Then move on, move forward. NOTHING is impossible.
If you disagree, I want you to ask yourself one thing. ‘How Syked was I when I first started climbing?’ Remember when the challenge was so hard, you didn’t defeated the first try? Everybody loves climbing a classic route, yes we love to do that multiple times. But remember, there are more classic routes at every grade. And Until you push yourself you will never know