I figured I would post this up so you would know that we haven’t just been hanging out in a tent at a campground eating s’mores…This is a small sample of what we recorded during our time in Las Vegas. Most of the finished quality video that was shot by Nick is still under wraps but I was able to get some footage for updating purposes! I can’t begin to tell you about the work that went into getting some of these shots…but I am looking forward to my next video update which will included some behind the scenes goodies! I will mention that we are looking for help editing video, so if you or a friend has some time available and would like to get their name on a project, we could use the help processing what we are able to shoot.

This video is of Stefanie and I leading some climbs as well as the harder climb that I spent a couple days projecting. I plan to return and climb my project cleanly (no hangs) in March and when that happens it will be my hardest lead at 5.12a/b. It is also really exciting that Stefanie is starting to get on the sharp end and leading some. She broke her foot badly in 2007 while climbing and so getting back into lead climbing has been a big challenge for her to push back.

Climbing is a mental battle first. Having a top rope above you feels totally different than having the rope clipped below you (translation: if you peel off, you’re going for a bit of a ride!) and it is something that we are always aware of and struggle with. Then again, if it weren’t scary at times, there would be no point.

During the time we were in Vegas my sugar was pretty uncooperative (I think my insulin got “cooked” at some point) and so I was also struggling with high blood sugar a lot of the time. If insulin gets too hot or sits in the sunlight it loses its effectiveness and is pretty much useless. So that is another facet of my life with diabetes…keeping an eye on the sun all the time to make sure it doesn’t randomly despoil my medication. Fun.

Nevertheless, I felt really strong on this project and not quite “at my limit”. Close, but none of the individual moves was harder than I could do. Having the endurance to connect the moves was what got me. I had been trying to conserve my energy and not really push my limit with the difficulty of the climbing because I have been looking at this whole project as a war of attrition. Outlasting the clock. Oddly enough, that is no way to live because it gets routine. I started to get bored with climbing. I needed to get shut down. I needed to fall. I needed to get pissed off and hit the wall–because THAT is what makes me stronger. I suppose that I did NOT need to have a couple of cretins shrieking and yelling in the background as I was working my project, but I guess I can remember the first time I walked off of a paved road…Anyhow, setting the bar low–setting goals that you can easily reach won’t promote growth!

So now I have been moderating my climbing-some days I go lighter to give my fingers a chance to recover but when I am climbing harder, I am really going for it. In every aspect of life, there is something to be said for getting uncomfortable.

I want to THANK Nick Percell, Rick Percell and Lisa Percell for their tireless patience and hospitality to us while we were in Las Vegas. Without Nick’s help, there is no way we would have half of the footage we have amassed.