Pain Tolerance

This past Tuesday I went up to Devil’s Lake to climb for an afternoon. I was able to hop on one of my many projects, Rubberman. I had put in a very short day of work on it a couple years ago and was shut down hard by the first couple of moves. I lowered off without making any progress and was thoroughly humbled by it.


Coming back alone this year brought a little more light to the subject though. I don’t know how much stronger physically I am compared to two years ago. My mental strength has changed though, as it should. This was helped along by doing Perfect Medium last year. Perfect has the sharpest hold I’ve ever used. The crux revolves around being able to shut out the pain factor and just going for it, which meant punching through and using that horrible razor edge.

Getting humbled on Perfect Medium

It hurts, but after you do it a few times it gets easier and easier…or you just go numb from pain and forget about it. Either way it gets more tolerable. For Perfect Medium my key was just forgetting about how much the first move hurt and just press on. “It’ll be over soon” I kept telling myself.

Sticking the painful crux move on the send

I find the first move on Rubberman falling in the same arena. I tried the move a couple times without really committing. Finally I grabbed the hold a little harder, forgot about the blood blisters and nearly stuck the move. With a little more work it’ll go and I’ll never have to use that stupid two-and-a-half-finger razor again.


In the land of hard Devil’s Lake climbs there are very few that don’t revolve around this same issue. Forget about the pain for a second and just hold on tight. It seems so simple now but I’m glad that I’m getting used to the idea before spending more time on my next project…

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