/ No-tivation

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MonkeyPuzzle - on 11 Feb 2019

I'm not exercising at the moment, I'm out of shape and even more out of psych. I want to get back on it but am currently fantastic at making excuses not to. Can anyone recommend anything to do, to read, to watch, to help me break out of the comfy comfy rut?

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krikoman - on 11 Feb 2019
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

Mates are my best motivation, and instead of saying "maybe" try a "yes, I'm in".

I went through a period of not committing so didn't bother.

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bouldery bits - on 11 Feb 2019
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

Same mate.

Just no psyched on anything.

I guess if you don't want it, you can't have it.

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what the hex on 11 Feb 2019
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

After a health scare, I spent two and a half years as a shut-in, scared to exercise in case I keeled over and karked it. Salvation came in the shape of a Springer Spaniel / Poodle cross that my sister bought. I walked that little ball of energy twice a day, every day. The pounds began to drop off and I started to volunteer in a local shop, eventually I got a job, then the weight loss accelerated. I never lost the fear of exercising though. I never made it back into the hills. Maybe a dog or a friends dog would be a good intermediate step for you - as it was for me?

I'll be watching this thread with interest for further tips!

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MonkeyPuzzle - on 21:31 Mon
In reply to what the hex:

I'd love a dog but current house and working arrangements wouldn't suit unfortunately. I keep on trying to have a bloody good word with myself but it's just not sticking!

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MonkeyPuzzle - on 21:32 Mon
In reply to bouldery bits:

> Same mate.

> Just no psyched on anything.

> I guess if you don't want it, you can't have it.

I want to want it but that's not the same thing is it?

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bouldery bits - on 21:53 Mon
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

> I want to want it but that's not the same thing is it?

Yup. Being keen comes and goes. IIt'll come back. I'm planning to get in the water at half term and see if that perks me up to get training again. (I am no longer climbing these days after an injury and surgery - surfing and running instead. When I'm keen!).

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Misha - on 23:18 Mon
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

I find it’s good to go to a different wall now and again. A bit more expensive than having membership at one but worth it for the variety. If you’re based in Bristol, you’ve got a few to choose from.

In fact taking out membership can motivate you to go to the wall as otherwise you’re wasting money!

Take part in comps, especially ones with several rounds - that motivates you to try to get a better score.

Most importantly, have a hit list of routes you’d like to do in summer and perhaps book a trip somewhere.

Hope this helps.

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Lord_ash2000 - on 23:23 Mon
In reply to krikoman:

> Mates are my best motivation...

I'd second that advice. Left to my own devices I sometimes find it difficult to train consistantly and will go through peaks and troughs of intense weeks followed by doing almost nothing. 

If you get other phyced climbers to partner with at least one will always be keen for something. In a way you don't even have to be motivated, just let them drag you out climbing without putting up much resistance and you'll normally be fine once you're out. 

But then I have a natural competitiveness, almost  to the point where I can't climb on my own, there is just no reason to try in my mind. But put with another comparable climber trying a project and I'll give it my all to beat them or at least lose to them by the smallest margin. 

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LeeWood - on 07:33 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

female company climbing half a grade harder ;) 

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dh73 - on 08:04 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

Just ask yourself if you want to be one of those people who cannot see their d*ck for their belly

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slab_happy on 08:11 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

Worth considering if there's anything that's tipped you into the rut in the first place -- for example, if stress or depression are factors, trying to get those a bit more under control can help get the psych back.

I find climbing outdoors is often great for psych.

Going to new places can be great, and having a climbing trip planned for a fixed date could give you the motivation of something you want to be back in climbing form for. The UK's got an amazing variety of different rock types to check out, so you could try something very new and different even if heading abroad is too expensive/inconvenient.

And/or try shaking up the disciplines -- if you're mainly been lead climbing lately, try bouldering, or vice versa (ditto with sport or trad, single-pitch or multi-pitch, roadside cragging or big mountain outings). Maybe this is the moment to learn a new aspect of climbing.

If you get psych from climbing books or movies, there's no shortage of awesome stuff out there and I'm sure people can spam you with recs if you so desire. For recent examples: "Free Solo" is in cinemas and "The Dawn Wall" is out on DVD/download, and they're both fantastic.

Post edited at 08:12
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LeeWood - on 08:47 Tue
In reply to slab_happy:

> If you get psych from climbing books or movies

Have to be in the right mood for this - could easily work against you - people with such huge natural talent there's no substitute for real human company climbing at a similar level

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Arms Cliff - on 10:45 Tue
Andy Gamisou - on 13:31 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

I've always found it pretty easy to motivate myself, so maybe can't help you in any specific way.  What I would say is that after over 50 years of excellent health, in the last 6 months I've been hit with several health issues that have severely curtailed what training I can do (to almost nothing) and limit how often I can get out, and what I can do when I do go out. 

Don't make the mistake I did, of assuming you'd always be healthy (at least until old age) and that poor health only really happens to other people (generally those that are unfit, with poor lifestyle choices) because I now realize that isn't the case.  Assuming that you are healthy, I'd recommend making the most of it to reach for your goals, and not to put off trips/experiences on the assumption they'll always be available tomorrow - they may not be.

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MonkeyPuzzle - on 14:04 Tue
In reply to Andy Gamisou:

Thanks Andy, I'm sorry to hear you've been stopped doing what you want to and I'm actually more conscious of wanting to be fit the older I get. I think my issue is that I feel consciously heavy, slow and weak and my last memories of exercise are feeling lighter, quicker and relatively strong. I don't know whether to maybe concentrate on losing a bit of weight first, to feel a bit more sprightly at least, or to find a way of just chucking myself into it feet first and hitting the bouldering wall three times a week. All easier said than done at the moment. It's a little embarrassing to feel so lazy.

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Andy Gamisou - on 14:53 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

When I was performing at my best (such as it was) I was always a bit tubby. Now I've lost about a stone, and I'm down to a weight similar to my early twenties, I've rather annoyingly lost some of my strength and all of my endurance.  You can't win sometimes ;-)

In your position I'd be inclined just go for it.  You'll probably improve quickly, feel better, and maybe lose a bit of weight too.  Good luck either way.

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slab_happy on 15:14 Tue
In reply to LeeWood:

> Have to be in the right mood for this - could easily work against you - people with such huge natural talent there's no substitute for real human company climbing at a similar level

Yup, it's all YMMV and different people will respond to different things -- hopefully Monkey Puzzle can sort out for themselves what might spark some motivation and what wouldn't.

For me, being competitive with mates can work negatively if I feel I'm currently climbing worse than I "should" be; for someone else it might push them in exactly the right way.

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MonkeyPuzzle - on 15:23 Tue
In reply to Andy Gamisou:

Thanks again. Yeah, when I said "lighter" it was definitely all relative.

I think this is all helping (especially the comment upthread about not being able to see my own penis). I've just remembered that I have a probably very dusty hangboard somewhere that hasn't been up in this house. I'm going to dig it out, install it over the living room door and start with some easy hangs and pull ups (with foot support to begin with). If I don't just pull the lintel down I'll take it as a sign to carry on.

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slab_happy on 15:27 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

> All easier said than done at the moment. It's a little embarrassing to feel so lazy.

FWIW, when I'm struggling to do stuff, it has helped to make a list of possible activities and identify the ones which take me the least mental effort to actually do (as opposed to the ones which only happen after hours of goading myself, or the ones which don't happen at all).

Sometimes you have to let go of priorities and start with the shit you will actually do. Then getting something done can feel like an achievement, and boost morale, and make it easier to do other stuff.

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dreadlockpasta - on 21:04 Tue
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

Good luck. I'm feeling the same this week. It's too wet ,  cold and dark outside (or maybe not cold enough ). 

Climbing walls are also grim at this time of year, just too many people for my liking

This last month I've done more surfing and skateboarding and no climbing .oh well I'm sure we will get back into it. 

Don't worry about it too much 

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MonkeyPuzzle - on 21:31 Tue
In reply to slab_happy:

> FWIW, when I'm struggling to do stuff, it has helped to make a list of possible activities and identify the ones which take me the least mental effort to actually do (as opposed to the ones which only happen after hours of goading myself, or the ones which don't happen at all).

> Sometimes you have to let go of priorities and start with the shit you will actually do. Then getting something done can feel like an achievement, and boost morale, and make it easier to do other stuff.

Is really good advice. I actually think I might be bit body conscious from letting things slide and worried about embarrassing myself out running or down the wall. Weird. Never happened to me but I think that's there. Hmmm.

Anyway, I found and put up the Beastmaker (should rename it the Meatbaker for the time being) and also did just half an hour of dumbells and bodyweight exercises. Super easy, but was sweating and blowing enough by the end to know I'll feel it tomorrow. I feel good and I've set recurring, suitably expletive-ridden reminders in my phone for every other day immediately after work and once on the weekend to do *something*. Now just to stick to it.

Any other good motivational tips gratefully received.

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Fishmate - on 00:27 Wed
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

I wouldn't weigh in too heavily as someone above suggested hitting the wall three times a week. It's easy to set big goals (normally relative to your existing output) and give up quite quickly.

I think Slab Happy is on the right path in suggesting, do whatever requires minimal mental effort or coercion but will push you in the right direction. If things seem like an effort then baby steps tend to work better than giant leaps. Best of luck, hope you don't ache too badly later today!

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slab_happy on 19:10 Thu
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

I forgot to mention: I've got a lot of benefit from what I think of as "outsourcing my executive functioning".

I use a free phone app called Impetus (Android, but I'm sure there are iPhone equivalents) that lets you build your own exercise timers, including a robot voice reading the name of the next exercise.

I use it for fingerboard timing, and also for things like core exercises -- I've made various nasty little routines that are ten different core exercises for a minute each.

What's weird is how much it reduces the mental effort required. It's much easier for me to flick to a program and then put my brain on auto-pilot and obey the robot voice than it would be for me to time myself and try to remember the exercises I wanted to do or keep checking a list.

And that reduction in mental effort makes all the difference when it comes to my actually doing it, as opposed to "meaning to do it but then I was really tired and sat down for a bit and thought I'd do it later and then somehow it was bedtime."

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DenzelLN - on 19:26 Thu
In reply to MonkeyPuzzle:

I regularly get like this.

I felt just like that today, my mate suggested i get on an E3, i really didn't want too, the last trad route i lead was a severe and i dogged the life out of it.

Anyway, got the moves wired today on a top rope, psyched to get back and lead it now.

Point is, i drew motivation from Simon who in turn was really happy to see me get up it in half decent style - in approximately 12 hours ive gone from considering selling my trad gear on eBay to thinking about what im going to need for the lead!

I draw motivation from others all the time, climbing for me really is about the social and special, unique moments with other people - if it was a lonesome pursuit, say like fishing i probably wouldn't be doing it, which explains why i swapped my rods for a rope

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