Friday, March 20, 2020

Training in the Time of Coronavirus: First Impressions

The world has completely changed since I posted last. I wrote about the implications for climbing here at and nothing has changed since then. In fact things are clearly getting much much worse. Closures of public land seem inevitable, or worse yet, complete public lockdowns are in progress which will surely expand beyond the current handful of states. Any naive hopes of turning this crisis into an expanded spring break road trip have been thoroughly quashed by public health closures and repeated posts from climbers on social media and elsewhere saying in essence, "stay home."

My cellar wall. Yes those are original V10s. Best board shoes ever. Saw a pair on CL recently asking $200.

So what to do? How to do it? Great questions and here are my thoughts this far in.

My first piece of advice is, if you're serious about training, think really long term because this pandemic is going to take a very long time to resolve and when/if it does resolve, things may have changed a lot. So your plan has to be sustainable for weeks and more likely months.

Second piece of advice. Don't make major changes in volume or intensity of anything. Getting injured is really unhelpful and very demotivating. Plus you don't want to see a doctor right now. Seriously, you don't.

Third piece of advice. Don't buy expensive stuff until you absolutely know you need it. Make your own hangboard from scraps of wood. Build the hangboard before you build a home wall.

Fourth piece of advice. Stop stressing about this right now. In fact this might be the worst possible time to launch into a serious training regimen. Take a break. Read some books. Walk the dog. Volunteer to help someone in need. Wait until you have space in your head for actual useful training and then get into it. More on that later.

Fifth piece of advice. Keep your gym membership current. If you can afford it, your local gym needs every dime of revenue you can give. Whether gyms stay open in the future will depend on your support happening right now.

And that's all for now. Later this week or early next, I'll discuss more concrete ideas for maintaining climbing fitness.

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