RC News #32: A Competition Marathon Across Canada

Recap of our 3-day competition marathon across the country!

RC News #32: A Competition Marathon Across Canada

Nearly a week after it all happened, I finally have a minute to sit down and write about it.

On February 15th, Zach and I flew to Beautiful British Columbia before the High-Performance Competition (HPC). We stayed in a town just 15 minutes outside Victoria to train with my coach, Libor. It was incredibly productive, and my coach is happy with my trajectory this season.

Victoria - success!

We spent five days on Vancouver Island, then took the ferry to Vancouver the day before the HPC on February 21st.

This year, the HPC took place in just two days. On the 22nd, the men had a round of 5 boulders, and the women followed on the 23rd.

The goal of this event is to simulate a World Cup qualification round. The top 10 qualifiers from Canadian Nationals were invited, as well as some select provincial extra quotas and National Team athletes. These boulders aren't just for anyone...

Unfortunately, Zach caught a bug while we were on the island, and his symptoms converged perfectly on his competition day. He was lucky to scrape together a third-place finish with a decisive top on the fourth boulder.

I dodged the sickness bullet and performed well on my competition day. I managed a couple of tops and a handful of zones that landed me a first-place finish.

Zach and I flew home to Toronto on the evening of my round.

Our original plan was to drive to Montreal the next day, but a few weeks after booking our flight, we noticed a competition at Gravity Niagara on the 24th. Although we would arrive in Toronto early in the morning on the 24th and only catch a few hours of sleep before leaving for the competition, we decided it was worth it for the prize purse.

Besides - who doesn't like a challenge?

So that's exactly what we did. We touched down in Toronto at 1:30 AM and got to bed around 3 AM. We slept until our 7 AM alarm, then got up and drove down to St. Catherines.

With the help of some serious caffeine, we both performed well in the 9 AM qualifier round. I was first into finals, and Zach was third.

At 6 PM, finals started, and I wasn't sure I could summon any power whatsoever - I was exhausted, and I'm sure Zach was too. Luckily, the adrenaline set in when I faced the crowd, and the fatigue faded.

Boulders 1 went well for Zach and me - but a fellow competitor got injured, and the competition suddenly stopped. We waited for over a half hour in the isolation area before the competition resumed. Unfortunately, that kind of rest doesn't agree with Zach, and he decided to pull out of the competition. It was a good call.

I could continue and went on to top the other three boulders, winning the event!

You'd think we collapsed when we got home that night, but it took a while for us both. We assumed it was due to the caffeine we took during the day and into the evening, but the next few nights were the same.

We had three competition days in a row and threw jet lag in the mix. The following week was a struggle. Zach was sick the day after the competition and took a few days off training.

For me, these competitions were towards the end of my training cycle. I had just two days left before rest week, and they were hardly my best work.

But Zach eventually got better and drove to Montreal, where he'll stay until we move into our apartment in April!

I chose to stay in Ontario until my flight to Germany - which happens to be this evening. At this point, I'm halfway through my rest week, and I needed this one.

Unfortunately, I have to throw a long-haul flight in the middle of it, but hey. Ain't no rest for the wicked.