Journal Entry, May 8, 2013

Time flies when you’re busy figuring things out about yourself.  I’ve spent the last month-and-a-half seeing a therapist about the behavioral problems that I’ve been experiencing most of my life, and I have to say that finally vocalizing issues to someone who isn’t your significant other is quite liberating.  Spending months or years of your life with militant thoughts swirling around in your head isn’t a good way to spend your time, and most definitely isn’t among the brightest ways to spend your energy.  Having someone explain to you in no uncertain terms that it’s okay to feel the way that you do, to understand where you’re coming from, and to intuitively help you discover where these behaviors originated and how they affect your life currently is an immense relief.  If there’s anything that I can recommend to anyone, whether you are depressed or even might be anxious or in need of advice, see a therapist.  Shop around for one, visit as many as you need, and find the one you can connect with immediately and start talking about the things that frustrate you.  You’ll be amazed at how much better you will feel.

Picked-up a Jawbone Up last month as well, and I’ve been using it to track my calorie intake, sleep patterns, and activity over that time frame as well, and I have noticed a pretty marked difference in how I feel and how well-rested I am when I wake up.  Being able to measure my sleep cycles has been the single most decisive thing I have done for myself in the last 2 years, and has had a pretty significant impact on how effective I am at work as well as how sociable I am around other people.  It has been a long time since I have slept half as well as this, but I’ve still got a few things I need to talk to my doctor about.  I’m still working on de-caffienating my life and getting weaned off of soda entirely.  It’s a slow and painful process, and it’s coming in stops-and-starts.  Some days I do really well, and other times I space entirely and slip into that familiar pattern of “Large soda, please” and “Dr. Pepper, thanks” when I’m out at restaurants and  eateries.  Old habits die hard, and dietary habits are probably the worst of the bunch to break.

I stopped going to CrossFit earlier last month, as it wasn’t achieving the goals I wanted to hit.  Instead, I purchased a road bike from CycleLoft in Burlington, MA.  Got outfitted with everything I needed for under $850 out-the-door and also had a really long and excellent conversation with the retail manager who sold me the bike.  Haven’t had a single problem yet, and it’s early in the season so I’m hoping that it’ll help me shed some of the extra weight I’ve gained over the Winter.  I calculated that I burn over 3,000 calories every day I ride to and from work on the bike, which is a pretty nasty amount of energy that my body is exerting.  Hopefully by the time Burning Man rolls around, I’ll have lost plenty of weight and I’ll be ready for climbing competitions later this Fall.

Speaking of competitions, I am keeping my eyes open for competitions this Fall in the New England area, specifically any comps with an “amateur” category seeing as how I don’t really climb above V4 (yet).  That’s not to say I won’t improve over the course of the Summer training with a friend of mine at Rock Spot Climbing, but I don’t want to set my expectations for myself too high.  I want to see how well I do in a single event before I start trying to aim higher, and I figure this is a good way to start.  Training is going fairly well, seeing as how I’m back to climbing V3 nearly-reliably and I am starting V4s pretty cleanly these days.  I’m extremely happy with my progress, and I hope that this will continue going forward.  I want to test climbing in a non-bouldering shoe like the Five Ten Anasazi Moccasin to see if the shoe is cheating me out of truly building my foot and calf strength.  That’s something I’ll have to test after I get paid next week and after I can afford a set of new climbing shoes, but I might just try it with my used Scarpa Vapor lace-ups to see if that’s the case.  They’re rounded-off and really difficult to stay on tiny foot-chips, but that might have to turn into part of my training regimen.  Improve my footwork, improve my grip strength, and make my moves flow as well as some of the truly great climbers like Sasha DeGuilian and Dean Potter.  That’s the plan, that’s the mantra.

I’ll talk more about work and what I’m doing to improve my professional life in the next post.  Until then, have to stay the course and keep working hard.  Things are improving, I just have to make sure that I don’t regress.

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