In which I take a photo every day that I'm 50, and post it here on this blog, with a bit of related blurb.

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Day 134 - Morphological Specificity

acting kinda boulder...

Boulder Central was rammed today, so I took a few photo's of the seething masses. 

Oddly, in all of the pictures it doesn't look as though there are that many there...and of today's snapshots, this one is relatively action-packed, in that you can see two people actually seemed much busier!

It was a mixed session...we climbed a selection of reasonably hard problems, but we both had failures.

We haven't been to this particular bouldering centre for a while, and this time found many of the problems to be morphologically specific...that is, they were straightforward if you were the right size and shape, but significantly harder if you weren't.

The usual effect of this is for many climbs to be hard for's notable at some places we climb outdoors, how many of the routes are described in the guidebook as "hard for the short".  

The consensus opinion is usually that the problems that come with being short (generally, a simple matter of not being able to reach), are broadly equalised by the problems associated with being tall (which primarily revolve around high weight, and poor power to weight ratio)

It's generally agreed, then, that being tall is neither better nor worse than being small...some climbs suit one type or the other, but overall, it balances out.

When we climb outdoors though (especially on grit), it seems that my height is an advantage, and so is my weight - grit climbing relies on friction, and rubber shoes seem to stick better when pushed more firmly onto the rock...further, both of these things boost confidence (or conversely, sap it for the vertically challenged), exaggerating the advantage even more.

Today though, for the first time in a while, it seemed the advantage was with the small.  Being large, and with my centre of mass further from my hands and feet, climbs can sometimes feel scrunched up.  I find it difficult to get my weight close in to the wall, holds can seem too low (such that my weight is relatively high, and thus unbalanced), vastly reducing their helpfulness.  Sometimes, I'm just too close to the floor!

Anyway as prophesied, I feel somewhat out of shape.  I climbed reasonably successfully, but I don't think I climbed with particular finesse...fine control was a bit lacking.  I also tired quite quickly...and everything hurts now!

But I hope that the exercise session will help to wake everything up and perhaps regain some of the good fitness I had at the end of February...since when exercise frequency has been too low, I've had a persistent virus of some sort, and the good shape I was in has been quick to retreat.

When we got home from bouldering, absolutely worn out, I found that for the first time all weekend, it was sunny and the lawn was I could find no reasonable excuse not to get it done. 

It was a hard slog, but I pushed through, all the while telling myself that it would help with the fitness...

(freshly mown)

This is about half of the lawn I was heavy work, as the drive on my lawnmower is shot...I keep thinking I should fix it, but that just kicks off an endless debate in my head about the exercise being good for me versus the pain in the arse of having to push I default to not doing anything, and regret it every time...until afterwards - having done the exercise, it becomes a good thing (to have done...)!

And so the cycle continues...

Anyway here's the old boy Jazz, looking a bit better on his new drug regime (although you can clearly see how wonky his shoulders are...).

...since my dog got older

He has shown some improvement, both physically and mentally, over the last couple of days...he's more relaxed and his stress levels appear to have receded.  For the first time in a while, I'm optimistic that he might be ok for a bit...

...tho' he is getting to be a very old man. 

Hang in there Jazzy Boy! 


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