I don’t have climbing heroes, because, to paraphrase The Big Lebowski, what’s a hero, anyway? There are a few climbers that I look to for inspiration though, and at the top of that list is the duo known as the Wideboyz: Tom Randall and Pete Whittaker. They have a deep love and commitment to crack climbing, which is even more impressive when you consider that they live in the United Kingdom.
by Luke Mehall, published in the current Volume of The Climbing Zine: Volume 20 (photos courtesy of Tom Randall)
I find Tom especially impressive, because he is the first to note that he is not an especially talented climber; he just works hard and has the passion to match his hardworking ethic.
COVID has affected all climbers differently during this time period. Those that live in cities and rely on gyms have especially been hit hard. Others just might not find themselves motivated. So, in this uncertain and strange time period, I decided to call Tom up and get some insight into his world during the pandemic, and how he’s dealing with the highs and lows of motivation. Here’re some highlights. Expect a full interview on our Dirtbag State of Mind podcast when Tom is able to travel back to the United States, and we can sit down for a campfire conversation.
- A key thing to understand is that motivation waxes and wanes. It’s not a superpower or a facet of your personality. It’s effervescent.
- When you’re in touch with your vision and values, the motivation part turns up quickly.
- It’s about being good at understanding that motivation comes and goes. (During the pandemic, Tom found himself doing more running when his motivation for climbing wasn’t there.)
- Sometimes when the motivation isn’t there, you simply have to “let it go” for a little while.
- It’s important to match up your expectations with your training.
- Many climbers are very motivated at the start of their training, but the key is to slowly ramp up your training.
- Training load is about volume and intensity.
- It’s all about making your training and your goals match up!
- Lastly: think outside the box (like climbing cracks under bridges or creating a crack system in your cellar)!
Need more inspiration? Watch some Wide Boyz Videos on YouTube.
Luke Mehall looks forward to watching the Wideboyz onsighting his projects the next time they visit the United States.