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By camhead
From Vandalia, Appalachia
May 15, 2012
You stay away from mah pig!
Ok, I know that this winter a lot of folks were doing the Manderson/Hangbored/ Rockprodgety periodized workouts. It's definitely getting to be the end of the spring season, so how did your training work?

Short response for me is this: periodization was not the magic bullet that others on this site have said it is for me, but I still had a good climbing season. I'm not sure if it was directly linked to periodization or not, though.

There were some setbacks.

First, I had planned my periodized stages to be simply too long for what my body could take. Since I had been gung ho about training as hard as possible, I planned out my hangboard routine to be 6 weeks long. It turns out that I was simply not that strong, and my body's hypertrophy naturally peaked and plateaued after 4 weeks. There was no way to keep productively training on the hangboard after this. The same thing happened with the campus board; I had scheduled 3 weeks, but stopped seeing gains after barely 2. So, all in all, this wound up moving my whole schedule forward three weeks earlier than I had planned.

Second, I train at a co-op gym, and the very week that I was scheduled to begin Power Endurance, the manager decided to completely strip the wall where I had set a complicated set of numbers circuits. So that cost me nearly a week of PE, which I had to improvise around with 4x4s on lower-quality problems.

This wound up moving my supposed "peak" to mid-March, instead of early April, which I had planned. I had one good day at Cooper's Rock bouldering, where I sort of flashed my hardest problem ever minus a wet topout (woopty fricking doo!), then that bizarre heat wave hit, and the next two weeks were terrible conditions to climb, where I managed one kind of hard trad onsight and nothing more. So, I was stuck thinking, "That's it? That was my peak?"

There were a few other setbacks as well. I had really wanted to redpoint a climb at my limit at Endless Wall, NRG, a crag that tends to have vertical, incredibly tweaky routes. Despite the strength I felt I had built on the hangboard, I tried out a few climbs with mono pockets in early April when temps had gone back down, and came very near rupturing tendon pulleys. It was disappointing, to say the least. Through later April, I gradually felt my body actually getting weaker, as I was obviously entering the essential ďrestínírecoveryĒ period.

But all in all, the season still went well. I retreated back to the big-holded enduro-steeps, managed to redpoint a climb that is numerically my hardest yet this past weekend and even have had a brief jump out of my training slump in the gym. Still, Iím going to take a month or two off in the summer. Definitely going to do a month of hangboard in August, but beyond that Iím not sure if Iíll do other specific Max Recruitment and PE periods.

The thing is, I'm not sure if this was because of, or in spite of the training, and if just bouldering would have been as effective. I dealt with a LOT of periods where I just felt weak or trashed, many more than before I tried periodization. I still have a lot to learn about how and why my body goes through peaks, troughs, and plateaus. Still, until last year, I had stagnated at the same redpoint level for over 6 years. I jumped a grade last year, and jumped a grade this year.

End of long post.

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By JohnWesely
From Red River Gorge
May 15, 2012
Gunking
camhead wrote:
Second, I train at a co-op gym, and the very week that I was scheduled to begin Power Endurance, the manager decided to completely strip the wall where I had set a complicated set of numbers circuits. So that cost me nearly a week of PE, which I had to improvise around with 4x4s on lower-quality problems.


This happens to me every single time I start an AE phase.

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By slim
Administrator
May 15, 2012
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.
it definitely sounds like you went too long on your hypertrophy phase and trashed yourself. 6 weeks is a long time, were you doing the workouts every other day or every 3rd day?

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By Brian S
May 15, 2012
Most off-season training programs in other sports have a back-off week every 3-4 weeks. The back-off week is 50% reduction in intensity and/or 50% reduction in volume in strength-based activities with no change in technique work. Taking that step back opens the door to taking more steps forward.

I climb a lot at Cooper's Rock and have learned to love the wetness. Which problem was it?

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By Will S
From Joshua Tree
May 15, 2012
I've found that hangboaring for me is done after 8-10 sessions. I plateau around there and trying to "push through" isn't very productive. I asked Monomaniac about this and IIRC his experience was similar, with the ability to push through for a tad more gains up to around 12 sessions.

I've got about 4 or 5 years worth of hangboard logs, and he probably has 10 yrs or more. Not a definitive sample set, but not a one-off either. Call it a month-long phase, give or take, for it to remain productive.

In my Dec-Mar "season" everything went very well. Hangboard phase went very well topping personal bests by about 10lb per grip, campus and bouldering training went very well with personal bests on the campus board by a wide margin, and I had the best bouldering season I've ever had, sending several problems that had bouted me in the past (including the previous winter), and had fast acscents (3-4 tries) of things that were a V-grade harder than I could even project last year.

PE didn't go as well, I wasn't very dedicated to it, didn't stick to my plan while in the gym (reverted to more bouldering than 4x4s or routes), and tried to substitute some working hard routes outside on TR, then a week and a half of running laps on cracks (because the "payoff" route for all the training was a longer classic crack line and I hadn't climbed any cracks for 4 or 5 months...one hung it).

In the end, it worked out fine because I had mostly bouldering goals for that part of the year(accomplished) with a couple of cragging route goals (FLA of a TR, didn't accomplish...but the work sessions paid off, have all the beta dialed...maybe this winter).

I was also able to run 5-6 mintrax laps (with rest between laps) for training on some routes I couldn't even get up two years ago.


Now the current cycle is not going as well. I am attempting a compressed cycle to squeeze in a peak for a specific route that will be out of condition by the time a full cycle would have been done. The hangboard phase I intended to take to full length (rather than compressing it, I would compress the power and PE phases) but was forced to end early, after approx 6 sessions. I met, but did not exceed my prior personal bests. One shoulder started complaining and I wasn't improving from session to session, had one terrible session at #5 or so. Next cycle, I am going to eliminate or cut back using extremely heavy added weight on a large hold (this has always been one set of my HB workout, with the other sets being smaller holds and less weight), pretty sure that was the culprit for the shoulder being tweaky.

Just finished the bouldering phase last night. Phase started slowly, the first two sessions were poor, but then it was like a light switch, I had great sessions in the last 3, especially the last 2. I did not campus in this cycle at all, partly due to compressed cycle, partly because that shoulder was still tight and not completely normal. Two weeks left to cram a few PE sessions in there, then the goal route. Luckily while being a long crack climb, it is bouldery rather than sustained and liebacks rather than splitters so I'm not sweating the lack of crack mileage.

Headed to the valley right after that, with no specific agenda for the first time. Maybe take the minitrax and go top-down for a look at the Golden Gate crux pitches. That's probably more rambling and longer than you wanted, but there it is...

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By Will S
From Joshua Tree
May 15, 2012
One more thing, I feel ya on the difficulty of PE. I'm doing 4x4s on a level of problems that is VERY popular among the masses. So having to dodge youth team dominating an entire section, having setting where there isn't necessarily 4 probs of similar/appropriate rating close together, and having people horn in on the next problem on your circuit while you are climbing the current one....it's a nightmare out there.

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By MorganH
May 15, 2012
I tried to do periodization this winter, but could not maintain the focus. Instead, I did mini-periodization based on my next up-coming trip where I had a specific goal. I would just boulder until 3 weeks before the trip, at which point I would do PE for 2 weeks really aggressively (5 days/week) and then rest for 4 or 5 days and then send. It worked pretty well.

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By LeeAB
Administrator
From ABQ, NM
May 15, 2012
Once we landed we headed to Font to find a place t...
Mine was going well until, in the middle of camp using, admittedly I was still trying to figure out what was hard enough to cause failure where I wanted, I had to set for a competition and in the process of forerunning one of the routes I tweaked a tendon in my middle finger. I was dumb enough to not layoff for a couple of weeks right off and continued to aggravate it weekly for a month or more. I did manage to put up a hardish route and feel out moves on a couple of others but that was about it. After a couple of weeks off I was trying to build some base on the auto belays and easy boulder problems and got suckered into doing one hard problem that set me back again. Next I crashed on a longboard and lost a lot of skin, including on my hip which meant no harness. This has been good in that I have not climbed in 3 1/2 weeks and am about to start again with higher hopes for getting through a full cycle.

On the other hand, my wife was also on the "Rockprodigy" plan and she sent 2 of her 3 hardest routes during her peak. The other that fits in that range was when we were in Spain for a month, 2 years ago, so I would say that it worked for her. Though she would benefit more from climbing dynamically than the training.

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By Christopher Barlow
May 15, 2012
Several things mentioned above resonated with me, especially from JLP. The Rock Prodigy system is great because it's, well, a system. It is scientific and replicable in this way, which has many benefits. I've tried several different variants of it over the last several years, including one starting in early January. Ultimately, my struggles every time take one of two forms: I get excited about some kind of goal at the wrong part of the different periods or things (often more important ones) from the non-climbing world get in the way. I added a new one this spring with finger injuries.

To summarize what I did, January and part of February were all about hypertrophy, focusing particularly on finger strength and large muscle groups. In mid Feb, I transitioned into some Max R. and PE to prepare for Spring Break. I had a few setbacks. First, I aggravated an old injury running problems with Lee. Then, days before Spring Break, on what was essentially my last day of hard climbing before taking several rest days, I did something gnarly to my left ring finger (loud pop and jolt). It ended up being more benign than it initially seemed, but my Spring Break ended up being much more mellow than I had wanted. I climbed plenty, but I had to reign in how hard to pull.

After about three weeks of gentle climbing, all of my fingers were feeling pretty good, and I started climbing hard again (bouldering and sport routes). That was about a month ago, and since then I've had some pretty dramatic results. Basically, hard climbing has felt pretty easy. I've been working on several projects, so it's been tricky to gauge how hard the climbing is, but I've gotten on stuff I've done in the past or established lines to calibrate, and they've felt easy, too. Not to be cheesy, but it's pretty great.

The only thing I can identify, comparing this season to previous ones and accounting for the hiccups, is an increase is baseline finger strength. There's lots of factors that dictate climbing performance, and many are difficult to systematize without a high level of discipline (not a pervasive quality in the climbing community). What I'm thinking of doing next in training is essentially climbing whatever is most convenient/motivating at the time but punctuating this every 3 months or so with a few weeks of rest and then a 2-week round of fingerboard training (and little actual climbing). My rationale is that these mini-periods will gradually - over months and years - increase baseline finger strength. The rest (technique, max recruitment, endurance, recovery time, all the other fancy training words) come more quickly and needn't be organized into a massively complex progression.

I'm drawing a lot of this from Macleod's book - 9 out of 10 Climbers Make the Same Mistakes. Macleod talks about all this stuff, too. He basically says that we need to increase finger strength, which takes a long time to gain, to climb harder. The rest mostly comes from treating climbing with intuition and reflection in terms of what helps us climb better or worse. For those that like the structure, the Rock Prodigy is awesome and clearly produces results. For me, inspiration is a big part progressing with climbing, and that is based on circumstance, not a system, which doesn't fit well on a periodized calendar.

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By camhead
From Vandalia, Appalachia
May 15, 2012
You stay away from mah pig!
slim wrote:
it definitely sounds like you went too long on your hypertrophy phase and trashed yourself. 6 weeks is a long time, were you doing the workouts every other day or every 3rd day?


Will S wrote:
I've found that hangboaring for me is done after 8-10 sessions. I plateau around there and trying to "push through" isn't very productive.


Yeah, this was the biggest mistake that I think I made. However, in response to Slim, I want to reiterate that I most definitely did not go too long on HYP. I planned 6 weeks, but after 4 weeks (once every three days = right at Will's 8-10 sessions), I saw an obvious lack of gains, and after talking with Mike A. a bit, I moved right on to Max R. So, I planned too long, but didn't go too long.

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By slim
Administrator
May 15, 2012
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.
camhead wrote:
Yeah, this was the biggest mistake that I think I made. However, in response to Slim, I want to reiterate that I most definitely did not go too long on HYP. I planned 6 weeks, but after 4 weeks (once every three days = right at Will's 8-10 sessions), I saw an obvious lack of gains, and after talking with Mike A. a bit, I moved right on to Max R. So, I planned too long, but didn't go too long.


interesting, once every 3 days. how many total sets were you doing each workout? i'm curious to see if it is a volume issue (ie too many sets)?

in january, i went with kind of a hybrid hypertrophy cycle. i did my hangboard workouts on tuesday and saturday, and climbed routes at the gym on thursdays and sundays. i wanted to try to get the benefit of increased finger strength, while still keeping the mental workout of trying hard while on a rope.

quick notes from my season. it started off really well. i almost onsited 2 letter grades better than my previous (broke a hold in 5 easy territory, i cried like nancy kerrigan....). i managed to send 9 routes in my target zone, within 1 to 3 tries each. sent several old projects. sent a bunch of routes just under my target zone. this was, by far, the best start to a year that i have had in a really long time.

unfortunately, i had my wisdom teeth out in early february, had a punctured sinus membrane, re-ruptured the sinus membrane, got a nasty sinus infection, and had to have surgery to suck out the sinus infection which was leaking back towards my ears and behind my eyes. unfortunately, my nose is so crooked that they had to break it in several places to get the tools up there, etc. i managed to keep climbing pretty well through all of this, but then injured my (good) shoulder when i slipped while hiking down from a wall one night. i had to back off of climbing for about a month or so.

anyway, i just started up my next hangboard cycle on a new hangboard. the first few workouts were rough, but fortunately mono warned me that switching hangboards kind of throws you off at first. i just did #5 last night and finally felt like it is coming together. i guess we'll see how the results turn out. i have been focusing on small holds to try to avoid overloading my shoulders, and so far it seems to be going ok.

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By Mike Anderson
From Colorado Springs, CO
May 16, 2012
The "Rockprodigy Training Academy (TM)(c)(patent pending)(501c)(YMMV)(offer not avilalbe in the US Virgin Islands)" is not responsible for inconvenient rain during your peak phase, injuries resulting from gym-climb-dude-bro-peer-pressure-comp-setting temptation, over-under-through training, non-sensical plannning of phases, and general vaginitis.

If I had a hemorrhoid for every unproductive season I've had, I would have quads the size of tree trunks from my inability to sit on my ass...oh wait.

Every training program, or non-training non-program random "just bouldering" routine will yield unproductive seasons. The question is whether or not they will eventually yield progress. FOR ME, my program has never failed to produce results eventually, but you have to keep at it. If you expect to improve a letter grade every season, then you haven't thought it through: at four letter-grade improvements per year, I should be at 5.24 by now...I must be terrible at training.

Some random thoughts:
-Robotically following the prescribed workouts is not enough to improve in such a complex sport. You must also ceaselessly examine strengths and weaknesses and dedicate time and effort to practicing-away your weaknesses.

-Training doesn't relieve you of the requirement to "try like hell" at the crag. Moves/routes will still be hard, the training equips you to be able to try hard on the routes, and sustain multiple hard moves on a route, it doesn't make moves feel easy.

-A lot of serendipity has to happen to have a magic season of tangible progress, and any number of circumstances can derail you. When this happens, as it usually does, it's very hard to identify a particular root cause (such as the quantity of reps or # of workouts). I've blown entire seasons (many times) just by picking the wrong routes to try...squandering my fitness on routes that were too easy or too hard, or otherwise not aligned with my fitness. That doesn't mean the training was wrong. Add to that the dozens of other factors that can derail you....

-Transfering training from plastic to rock is not trivial. I have ideas on how to do it, but no magic formula. For many (most?) climbers, lack of performance on the rock is quite likely due to this disconnect, not a failure of the training protocols.

I hope you all will keep up with the program and see better results in the near future.

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By slim
Administrator
May 16, 2012
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.
"...but you have to keep at it. If you expect to improve a letter grade every season, then you haven't thought it through: at four letter-grade improvements per year, I should be at 5.24 by now...I must be terrible at training. "

but i read a book a while back that claimed that it is realistic to improve a number grade in a year.....

definitely hear you on transfering from plastic to outside, that always gives me some problems.

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By LeeAB
Administrator
From ABQ, NM
May 16, 2012
Once we landed we headed to Font to find a place t...
Mike Anderson wrote:
The "Rockprodigy Training Academy (TM)(c)(patent pending)(501c)(YMMV)(offer not avilalbe in the US Virgin Islands)" is not responsible for inconvenient rain during your peak phase, injuries resulting from gym-climb-dude-bro-peer-pressure-comp-setting temptation, over-under-through training, non-sensical plannning of phases, and general vaginitis.


This is why we need to be able to "Like" posts.
-The setting is what I do for a living, I know it can come at extremely inconvenient times, but, it happens to be something that I'm actually good at.
-If you knew my history of finger injuries you would realize that I'm not blaming the "Rock Prodigy" method, but my need to make money, visit a friend and get some snowboarding in. I do believe that it will help prevent them.

My new favorite excuse is that my wife was planning a trip with a friend for the middle end of July (not ideal temps but hey) so we planned a cycle to end then. Magically the trip got moved to the first half of June, somehow I don't think this is going to work well, but then again most climbers are kind of flakey and unable to commit so I guess that they are actually going is still a plus.

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By Christopher Barlow
May 17, 2012
Mike Anderson wrote:
Every training program, or non-training non-program random "just bouldering" routine will yield unproductive seasons. The question is whether or not they will eventually yield progress. FOR ME, my program has never failed to produce results eventually, but you have to keep at it. If you expect to improve a letter grade every season, then you haven't thought it through: at four letter-grade improvements per year, I should be at 5.24 by now...I must be terrible at training. Some random thoughts: -Robotically following the prescribed workouts is not enough to improve in such a complex sport. You must also ceaselessly examine strengths and weaknesses and dedicate time and effort to practicing-away your weaknesses. -Training doesn't relieve you of the requirement to "try like hell" at the crag. Moves/routes will still be hard, the training equips you to be able to try hard on the routes, and sustain multiple hard moves on a route, it doesn't make moves feel easy. -A lot of serendipity has to happen to have a magic season of tangible progress, and any number of circumstances can derail you. When this happens, as it usually does, it's very hard to identify a particular root cause (such as the quantity of reps or # of workouts). I've blown entire seasons (many times) just by picking the wrong routes to try...squandering my fitness on routes that were too easy or too hard, or otherwise not aligned with my fitness. That doesn't mean the training was wrong. Add to that the dozens of other factors that can derail you....


There's a lot of wisdom in Mike's whole post and particularly in the quoted part here. The basis for my previous comment wasn't a critique of the Rock Prodigy system. It was, for lack of a better term, a question of the larger concept of training.

I'll own that I live where there are pretty good commercial gyms and easy access to a lot of outdoor climbing. With that in mind, it seems like the composition of training elements (outdoor climbing, indoor climbing, fingerboard, campusing, etc) should be balanced in favor of more climbing, since that is where much of the real progression and learning takes place (even if it still mostly happens on plastic), and also happens to address the non-physiological elements in climbing well: technique, tactics, positive mental attitude, and the like. If we can agree that the true physiological limitations in climbing are mostly (and let me emphasize "mostly") linked to finger strength and/or endurance, then that is the element that will yield the most results in performance.

In my experience, pretty much all of these elements can, with a focus on training rather than performing, be addressed through actual climbing. Trying to climb more pumpy routes will improve endurance. Working hard routes/problems helps with Max R and technique. Trying different styles (or forcing oneself to) also improves technique. I could go on. The glaring exception is pure finger strength (and antagonistic training as injury prevention, but who wants to actually do that). There just doesn't seem to be a way to increase finger strength effectively (and safely) without isolated training. For this reason, training that addresses finger strength will be the least extra effort (beyond just being psyched to climb) for the most pay off.

Okay, now poke holes in that rationale.

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By slim
Administrator
May 17, 2012
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.
i think the big problem is that it is difficult to translate the progress you make indoors to actual performance outdoors. i've used the SCC progressive plan for about 5 years, climbing indoors at pretty good gyms, and my top onsight and redpoint grades went down instead of up.

probably the biggest issue is that the gyms tend to set routes that are dominated by open handed slopers and pinches, which is very uncharacteristic of 95% of the climbing in my area. (and uncharacteristic of 100% of the climbing that i do).

my first season returning to using the hangboard (albeit still using some gym climbing) immediately produced better results than i have seen over the last 5 years. some people are able to seamlessly transfer the gym skills to outside, but i have been completely unable to do so.

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By reboot
From Westminster, CO
May 17, 2012
slim, I know you've alluded to having difficulty transferring indoor performance to outdoor before, but I'm really kind of perplexed by that. Sure I have climbing partners who pull reasonably close to me in the gym that have all kinds of trouble on technical routes outside. But they are mostly either fairly new at climbing or are pretty one dimensional. But you seem to have been climbing for quite a while and get on all kinds of stuff.

Anyway, I never quite got into periodization this winter, although I did 5/6 fingerboard workouts. That & working on some of the more fingery routes in the gym, I definitely feel increased base finger strength. Had a minor finger overuse setback, which prompted me to skip bouldering (I paid for it 1st trip to rifle this season). So far, I've only redpointed a couple routes I didn't pay as much attention to last year, but they both went down very quickly (on the 1st & 2nd day trying this season). It's too early to tell what I'll be able to accomplish; I'm projecting and making good progress on something ~2 letter grades harder than my hardest redpoint, which unfortunately means I need to ditch my old climbing partners (nobody wants to work it w/ me) and find some new ones. Regardless, training is helping me; I'm just not that sold on the periodization concept. The climbing season here is so long that I'm not sure I need to "peak" than just get better gradually (mainly climbing mixed with targeted training: fingerboard, campusing, but only 1 session every 2 weeks or so. It's about all my fingers can handle at once anyway).

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By SteveZ
From Denver, CO
May 18, 2012
Lion King with the pup.
Just to add one more data point:

I did a 6wk Hyp and 4wk MR phase this winter/spring very much like RP describes. I elected to do no formal PE phase, but rather gain this slowly/non-systematically by transitioning from primarily threshold boldering to projecting routes. I chose this because my PE was generally high relative to my power and overall strength. Also, I decided to train in the first place as I believed my strength to weight ratio to be a glaring weakness relative to my other climbing capabilities.

The results: Last fall before the cycle I sent a new grade, so I may have just been riding that success. However, after the cycle this spring I sent 6 or 7 more of that same level or harder, most within 2 or 3 tries as opposed to a dozen or so. I also spend much of my time/energy working on climbs a few letters harder than last fall's high point. Despite not sending, they feel very close, and I'm optomistic that another training cycle will seal the deal especially if I actually do a PE phase this time. Another benefit was the large improvement on steep climbs which had previously given me trouble relative to vert/techy routes.

The huge disclaimer is that during my training cycle I made the concerted effort and lost about 20 lbs. This alone could account for a great deal/all of the improvement so who knows. I do think it's interesting at least for me, the amount of confidence the training ingrains in my ability to do really hard (for me) movements. It's almost that even if the training didn't produce physiological strength gains (which is unlikely) it would still produce a strength gain from a mental/tenacity/try hard perspective. Almost a placebo effect.

So for me the training was extremely helpful, but it was also clear that my biggest weakness was weight:strength so I could see it being much less beneficial if you suck more at "x". I think that's where Macleod's book tries to steer you; to always identify and address that weakest area related to your goal.

Good to see people's outcomes, much to be learned lurking in the training forum :)

ps. didn't someone on mp here make an adjustable crack for using as part of their hangboard routine? I'm really curious how that worked out too if you're out there.

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By Chris Plesko
From Westminster, CO
May 18, 2012
OMG, I winz!!!
I'm in the middle of my hypertrophy phase now, with this being the first time through a full cycle of structured climbing training. Finishing my grad program at the end of June leaves me little time right now to do anything but train in my garage anyway. I figured I would give it a shot and see what happens. It's got to be better than doing nothing which is where I would be if I was trying to climb outside more than twice a month. Hell I've only made it to the gym once in the last 4 months probably.

Last year before my grad program started, I focused on training two weakness of mine in a semi structured way. I ended up onsighting my flat out hardest sport route ever, a letter grade above my previous hardest redpoint and increased my bouldering 2 V grades. That success tempted me back towards doing some "actual" sport training which I haven't done since dropping the structure of my ultra cycling training in 2010.

The lack of hard climbing during ARC and HYP makes me nervous but I'm staying true to my plan and giving it a shot. I have seen pretty good gains in both phases so far. We'll see how MR goes as I've never campused before. Nevertheless, I have the whole month of July off when I'll be peaking so I figured it was worth a shot. I'll reevaluate in August when I think about writing down another structured plan.

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By Chris Plesko
From Westminster, CO
Jun 14, 2012
OMG, I winz!!!
Here is a quick update from me:

Last Sunday afternoon I got outside to try some harder sport routes after my first campus/bouldering maxR session on Friday. I was definitely nervous leading again on a rope, it's been a *while* due to school. Thankfully the nerves tapered off with every route I did at least. That being said I flashed a couple easy 10s and an 11b.

One of my partners had started to work on the Shaft (12b) so I had a top rope go on it. In the past I've been absolutely stopper moved on anything mid 11 and above. Instead I surprised myself by climbing cleanly to the rest and doing the crux moves in pieces that seemed reasonable. I'm not claiming a proud top rope send as I definitely hung all over the crux but I was really inspired by the fact that all the holds and moves felt so good. Looks like I found my first project during my peak phase!

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By slim
Administrator
Jun 14, 2012
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.
keep up the good work chris, glad to hear about your progress!

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By Tipton
Oct 15, 2012
Since my first full Periodization season (Anderson Brothers/Rockprodigy) is coming to a close in another week or so I figured I'd throw in my experience as well. I'm still new at redpointing and some scheduling mistakes from learning how to do it effectively were a big reason my season wasn't more of a success.

My schedule got a bit off due to conflicts but it came out to 10 Hypertrophy workouts, 6 campus workouts, and 4 PE workouts. Overall the physical results were great despite not having success on my goals.

At the end of the power phase I was blown away with how strong I was. I was doing V6 in the gym in just few tries and made great progress on a V9 in a single work session, slipping off the finishing hold each time (also in a gym...). Flashing V5 was also fairly trivial which used to take me a few tries. I don't regularly boulder but was completely shocked with my strength. I had never campused before and I think this was a big contributor.

My goal for this season was to tackle a few harder 12s and one 13. Unfortunately, I made a critical error in my target 13 since most of my partners aren't strong enough to climb at that crag. This led me to make a last minute change to a more accessible route, even though it was a completely different style which I had not really trained for.

Another mistake was to save the RP attempts for the end of the season even after I had learned the beta for my target routes. Circumstances piled up on the last trips - rain in the morning meant some of the routes weren't climbable on one trip. Another trip someone had their campsite (tent, fire, the whole shebang) directly underneath two of the routes I was going to redpoint. The entire area was a smoke pit from the fire so even if the tent moved I was screwed.

Despite the shortcomings and lack of planning/common sense on my part I still feel like periodization worked out very well for me. Since I managed to hose everything up, I decided to extend my season for an extra week and will be going for glory on my last trip. I'm still plenty strong to do the moves on the projects and my PE is only improving.

In the future I will back off the PE to one or two sessions of 4x4s. It comes on so fast that much more effort is just overkill for the areas I frequent. I also messed up by making the entire cycle too long. I missed a few hangboard workouts mid-way through the hypertrophy phase and shifted my schedule to fit them back in. While I don't think this contributed negatively to my performance, it has been difficult to stay psyched for such a long time.

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By Monomaniac
Administrator
From Morrison, CO
Oct 22, 2012
Insurrection, 5.14c.  Photo Adam Sanders.
Will S wrote:
A picture is worth 1000 words. Last week:


Right on dude! That thing is so big....

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