PODCAST: Factor Two - S2 Episode 2: Me and My Shadow

In this second Factor Two podcast series, Wil Treasure continues to share stories from the climbing world through interviews with both well-known and lesser-known characters. In-depth, personal accounts that aren't read from a page on a variety of themes. Settle down with a cuppa and have a listen...


Mina Leslie-Wujastyk has already established herself as one of the best sport climbers in the country, with redpoints up to 8c. For the past few seasons she has been attempting Rainshadow, Steve McClure's iconic 9a at Malham. It's more than a step above her previous ascents, and initially something that it hadn't even occurred to her to try. It seemed too unfeasible.

Mina Leslie-Wujastyk © UKC Articles
Mina Leslie-Wujastyk

When pushing the limit at some point you will find it. We often say this with risk taking, but the same is true when pushing your physical boundaries. Over time Mina has become more confident that she could successfully redpoint Rainshadow, but at first it was an impossible dream. Staying motivated for a few sessions on a route isn't hard; but staying motivated when your project enters double digits and multiple seasons isn't easy.

I wanted to understand how Mina stays focused on a long term goal, and how she does that in the face of the chance that she might never succeed.

In the last episode with Dave Thomas we saw how a need for control, maintaining integrity and establishing your own identity were important. Finding ways to enter that elusive flow state was how Dave achieved this.

Mina isn't out for risk or resolving inner conflicts, but her story boils down to the same key features: desire, belief and understanding her own identity. The difference is that for Mina, flow is a tool to be utilised.


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17 Dec, 2018

Are you going to upload new episodes to Stitcher?

17 Dec, 2018

It should appear in any major podcast app, including Stitcher.

17 Dec, 2018

That was really interesting and stimulating. Thanks Wil - and thanks Mina for being so open. Many years ago (mid 80s), studying (well, mainly climbing!) at Ilkley College, I became interested in flow. At the time it wasnt really a thing in climbing, except through the descriptions of people's experiences in  some of the better literature. In relation to performance, it had been  picked up in things like Inner Tennis and the other books that followed that- Inner Skiing etc.. I came across the concept in reading about surfing and decided to do my dissertation on it. I haven't thought much about it until recently when I came across it in Hazel's blog - so that was fascinating hear how you are seeking to engineer flow as a tool for performance. Looking forward to hearing about your forthcoming flow on Rainshadow - and thanks again for this excellent podcast.