I feel like it’s time to start writing again
Finally I have managed to sit down and get some words out and post them on my website. It has been an incredibly long time since my last post and I feel like it’s time to start writing again. So here it goes…
I guess I should start with a little recap on the last 12 months as I didn’t actually publish any of my writing last year. So… sorry for the silence. I’m not sure why I haven’t posted in so long. I have begun to write a post on so many occasions but I’ve never got round to finishing. So much has happened and it’s been pretty overwhelming at times. Last year I spent a lot of time being incredibly frustrated. Just before heading on a trip to the USA in November 2014 I injured my finger. Then in May, just before heading into the 2015 season, I injured a different finger. This lead to me dropping out of the European Championships. Not the start I had been hoping for.
I guess I didn’t want to write another negative, whiny blog post about the frustrations of injuries. Especially as I was able to climb and compete in the World Cups and make the podium. I pride myself on being totally honest in my writing and I found it really hard to document my experiences without sounding negative. I’m generally a very positive person but I was just struggled to get this across.
I went away to the World Cups knowing I wasn’t where I wanted to be. But I really wanted to compete. There was no pressure on me to compete. I just really wanted to. Whether it was wise to push myself and my finger could be debated. It took a lot of energy to stay motivated and by the time my trip to Rocklands, South Africa, came around I was exhausted. I didn’t want to climb. I was tired. So during my 3 weeks in bouldering heaven I climbed twice. I’d wanted to go there for so long, there were so many boulders that I wanted to try but I was so far off where I wanted to be and my finger hurt. I just wasn’t psyched.
This definitely gave me a lot of time to think, process and generally let my body rest and heal. They say you should listen to your body. It seems that whoever ‘they’ are know what ‘they’ are talking about. I returned from SA just before the last round of the World Cup series. I knew that I was in with a chance of making the overall podium and I decided that I wanted to compete, give whatever I could and see what would happen. I had no idea what to expect. I didn’t know how I was climbing. It was time to put my head to the test. The qualification round didn’t go so well but I managed to get into the swing of things. I remember exactly where I was stood when I realised that I had made the final. I was elated. I was ready to just go out and give everything I had. And that’s exactly what I did. I focused on each boulder and nothing else. Resulting in one of the most satisfying moments of my climbing career. I did every boulder on my first attempt. A perfect score.
From that point on my focus was on rehab and training. Well, after a little holiday with my best friend to explore the bouldering in Brittany. Amazing place, incredibly beautiful but the boulders are a little rough and brittle. Standing on top of the podium in Munich seems like a life time ago. Many things in life have been keeping me busy. In the past months so much has happened. The Women’s Climbing Symposium came and passed. Another successful, sold out event that brought 350 women together to celebrate our amazing sport. And I got to meet the lady who started my obsession with climbing. Catherine Destivelle was one of our headline speakers and gave us all an unbelievable insight into how bad ass and amazing she is! I also nipped over to Sweden to compete in the Legends Only comp. That was a blast. Hanging out with Anna, Jule and Melissa and getting to know the lovely Janja Garnbret was such a pleasure. We spent Christmas and New Year in the UK and got in some good quality family time and got to catch up with good friends. Then the next big thing was BIFF. The Beastmaker International Footless Festival that Ned and I organise. It took place last weekend and was so much fun. Search #biff2016 on Instagram to see some hilarious photos. There’ll be a video out soon.
One of the most significant and devastating things to happen recently was the death of my good friend John Ellison. Many of you will know this man. He was the founder of the outstanding charity CAC and his story is an inspiration to so many. He taught me so much with his positive attitude and constant enthusiasm and love of life. I have been a trustee for the charity Climbers Against Cancer since it began and I will continue to work hard alongside the other four trustees to ensure it’s success. John’s legacy will live on.
I am also very pleased to announce that I have a new Sponsor. Just Kampers! I am so excited to be working with this amazing company. It’s such an honour to be part of the JK family.
So I guess that’s a really quick recap on what’s been going on. I’ve also been training lots during the past few months and I feel great on the wall. Leah Crane recently joined the team and introduced me to the world of acro yoga. To say we’ve laughed a lot would be an understatement.
I’ll be updating you again soon.