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maculated


Sep 8, 2004, 9:11 AM
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Burnout?
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Well . . . it became very apparent to me this weekend that I've gotten burned out on climbing. I carried my trad rack around and started up a climb but so many things were working against me (injuries, lack of my aliens) that I bailed. Without even trying.

Sometimes I sit on the hill by my house that features our local climbing and think, "I should climb today" but then the demons run through my head that I should be leading and I'll hurt myself or I'll just get too scared and why bother? So needless to say, I've not been climbing much lately. I just have some irrational fear to deal with. This sucks because I've cultivated an arsenal of willing partners, and now I spend way too much time turning them down.

I'm supposed to spend next weekend in Yosemite, and I actually don't want to go . . . what say you all when one suddenly finds oneself unable to even will the rock warrior?

I've got a doctor's appointment today to deal with my various chronic injuries, and I hope the absense of pain will help, but still - the thoughts are still there.


robmcc


Sep 8, 2004, 9:18 AM
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Re: Burnout? [In reply to]
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I think you take a break. Week, month, year, years, it doesn't matter.

Mine was 9 years. Do what feels right. I don't know (or care) if this is WW, but I think "it" should be all about finding or making happiness in your life. If climbing isn't part of that right this second, let it go for a little while. Odds are, it'll pull you back in when the time is right.

Rob


fracture


Sep 8, 2004, 9:24 AM
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I agree with the break suggestion. If you're injured, it'll also give you some time away to let you recover better, so it may be the best choice.

Another option, however, is to mix it up some. If you're getting tired of pushing yourself on trad, go do some easy climbing where the only goal is having fun. If hauling the gear around is seeming distasteful, do some easy bouldering or sport somewhere.

If you push yourself constantly you're probably going to need a break. That break can either be from climbing, or just a break from taking climbing so seriously.


jt512


Sep 9, 2004, 8:41 PM
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In reply to:
Well . . . it became very apparent to me this weekend that I've gotten burned out on climbing.

If you're burned out, take a break from climbing. Get away from it all; even this website, I'd say.

I got burned out a few years ago. It got so bad that I couldn't lead this 5.9 sport route that I'd done 50 times. I just suddenly developed this bizarre fear of falling. I took about a month off, and came back to the sport feeling refreshed, but the amount of time off varies from weeks to years. If you're not getting satisfaction from the sport, take however much time off you need.

-Jay


maculated


Sep 10, 2004, 1:18 PM
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Update: I effin' hate doctors. He didn't even examine me. Just said, "Quit climbing, lose weight, take some Ibuprophen." Lovely.

Well, we'll see . . . I committed to a week in Yos next week. It's hard to quit doing something when everyone wants you to climb with them. Gack.


dredsovrn


Dec 15, 2004, 6:14 PM
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Interesting subject. I found that I became obsessed after a while, and thought that I had to be climbing or training for climbing at least 3 days a week or I was slacking. I certainly made progress, but I wasn't always having fun.

I took a week off, and then went out and climbed moderate trad. Some old favorites. You know, the routes with lots of rests, good views, and easy gear. It was nice. I managed to enjoy myself and not feel bad about not pushing my limits.

It sounds stupid sometimes when I say it out loud. Why do you have to push all the time? I am training for Portrero in January. I am planning on three days of climbing from light until dark. I will take a few weeks off after that until I can't wait to climb again. Unfortunately, it will still be February and cold as hell in PA, but it will be good to take a break and let desire build again. Maybe I will climb some ice instead. Maybe not.


curt


Dec 15, 2004, 7:12 PM
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As strange as this may sound, it is also possible to be sort of "burned out" on climbing without even knowing it. I went climbing on Thanksgiving weekend in Joshua Tree in 2001, as I had pretty much every weekend for the previous 20+ years, and I had a good time.

Then, for reasons that I still do not fully understand, I did not climb for about 10 months, until September of 2002. The first time back climbing, my climbing ability sucked, but I found that I was inspired to climb like I had not been in years. After a month or so of regular climbing, I was climbing just about as hard as I ever could, but more importantly, I had this burning desire to climb again.

So, apparantly, even though I enjoyed the climbing right before taking the 10 month break, in retrospect I was more-or-less just going through the motions. Only after taking the break can I now see the difference.

Weird, eh?

Curt


dredsovrn


Dec 16, 2004, 5:03 PM
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I watched a show last night that highlighted Hugh Herr. He is from my area, so it caught my attention. I had heard his name, and his name is attached to a number of routes and highball boulder problems in the area. I didn't really know much about him though.

If you haven't heard of him, the short version is that he was something of a climbing phenom, and lost his legs after a tragic ordeal on Mt Washington. After rehab, he continued to climb on artificial legs. He was still pushing his limits.

I don't remember what route he did last, but I it was something like 5.12X trad, or similar level of commitment. After he did it, he walked away from climbing and said that he didn't need it anymore. He felt free of the stress of risking his life regularly. That hit home with me. Sometimes you need to stand back before you go to far. Sometimes just to find the passion again, assuming it comes back.

I appologize to any Hugh Herr biogrophers or Hugh Herr himself if I have butchered the story. That's just what it meant to me.


wa_hoo


Dec 16, 2004, 7:59 PM
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I've been pushing and pushing and I think those that suggest a rest or backing off a bit are right on. I have been using climbing to push myself mentally and deal with old fears and other stuff, so tonight at the gym I decided to just have fun and no pushing allowed.

I actually had a great time. Better than in a long time. I lead low stuff and felt good and looked smooth and together, I TR low stuff and enjoyed myself much more becuase I was relaxed and just enjoying the feel of it.

I would suggest changing something becuase your current mode of operating isn't working any more. See what sounds appealing and give change a try. Good Luck!


dirtineye


Dec 17, 2004, 9:03 AM
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I've had some injury and illness problems myself for a while now, and they seem to contribute to that burnt out feeling quite a bit.

Once you are climbing injured or sick, there is a kind of dread of further injury and a dread of not performing up to your normal level, and these two things feed each other.

When you can't depend on your physical self, it affects your psychological self.


wa_hoo


Dec 19, 2004, 6:14 PM
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I totally get the defeated feeling, but I'm rethinking it with the Warrior perspective. What would Arno say? I'm thinking he'd suggest focusing on what you CAN do with what you have right now. Can you strengthen another aspect of your climbing? What can you do now to grow and learn. Maybe you have to take some time off the rock, but it seems there are other workouts or pieces of the climbing that can still be growing.

I also read something in here about trusting your body after an accident. Definitely true. But I've also found that it's helped a ton to make sure I'm accurately assessing my picture of my limitations. Sometimes it's easy to blow them up bigger than they are, or to project the old messages onto the present situation when only some of it still applies.


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