vrijdag 15 april 2016

NSK Lead 2016

Last Saturday the Climbing students were competing with and against each other to fight out who would be crowned for the best male and female student climber of the Netherlands! Besides this it is also every year a big competition which SAC has the strongest climbers. The last few years the GSAC (Groningen Student Alpine Club) took that price but I hoped that this year Ibex was ready to take it over. There also were some side-events like blind Climbing, dyno contest, deadhang contest and topo guess contest.

Being together with 99 other students makes this competition one of the best of the year: having fun is most important, besides Climbing and the big party afterwards. The qualification round existed of about 20 routes of all different levels so that everyone can climb at his/her maximum. The routes were fun and diverse, even as the side events. Iris Straatsma was besides my biggest concurrent also my buddy and together we won the blind Climbing side event: I was Climbing blinded and Iris gave the perfect tips to reach the top as fast as possible. Together we ended up with the highest score in the qualification round, and also the final didn't made a distinction between us because we both topped the route. So the final was promised to be exciting!

The route looked very nice, many big (but bad?) holds, small crimps and all holds visually very nice positioned. Psyched to climb it! The waiting in the isolation (I had to climb last) didn't took long, which made me quite nervous: why was everyone falling so fast? Then it was already my turn to climb. The beginning went easy, some nice balancy shoulder moves and then from a big donut hold to another, even bigger, donut hold. Ouch, the first one was a sloper. And where were the footholds? I began to understand why the others fell so early. I hesitated, chalked my hands, hesitated again, putted my feet completely to the left and then went for the next donut. Ouch, also a sloper! Sometimes Climbing is easy: just hold on. So I did, fighting my way up the route. I loved the movements, I loved getting pumped and being able to shake it away, I loved the small crimps at the end of the route which were just big enough to hold on to even while being pumped and I loved the public going crazy after topping the route. Yeahh! Dutch Student Champion 2016!

Picture made by Menno Visser

Pieter van Loon, my training partner last year, did a perfect performance during the semi finals: Climbing in his pyjama he reached the top of the semi final. I really hoped he would do the same in the final so that we would become both Dutch Student Champion. The men's final was tough, very tough but Pieter showed his strength and managed to climb further than all other men and also crowned himself as Dutch Student Champion 2016!

But the competition was not completely over yet: in order to get our flag back, we (the ibex board) had to perform a dance act, even as the ESAC and the TSAC. The one who had the best performance, got their flag back. We choosed the number deceptacon - le tigre, and did the associated dance. Thanks to our secret dancing talents we won and got our flag back! Unfortunately we didn't managed to steal theirs, this honour is for the ZeeSAC.

All together it was a great event!

vrijdag 8 april 2016

Nederlands Ruigste

Nederlands Ruigste (Dutch toughest) is a television programme in which they look for the strongest Dutch man and woman. In the quest to find this, two events are being organised: one trial event and one final event. The trial event took place last weekend in Flevonice. All participants from 10 categories had to run through an obstacle parcour of 7km. The best five men and women of each category made it to the final event, which will take place April the 16th in the Olympic Stadium (Amsterdam).

(Rock) Climbers was one of the categories and I signed up for participating for this event. After all: it was a cheap opportunity for doing an obstacle run and I was curious about the programme. Unfortunately not many other climbers showed up, so we were at the start with only 6 woman and about 12 men. I had no clue about my condition, my physical abilities, the parcour, nothing. I decided to just enjoy and see what will happen.

The race started with 2.5 km running while carrying a sandbag. The first two km where easy, I had a nice cadense and was in a good running flow. The weather was just perfect: cloudy, not too warm, not too cold, no rain and no strong wind. The last half a kilometer the sandbag was annoying me and I was happy when I got rid of it. Then the obstacle parcour started: running/walking/swimming (a combination of this) through ditches, Climbing and jumping over walls, traversing monkey bars, crawling through mud. It was diverse and continuing the flow I came in during running I didn't found much trouble overcoming the obstacles. Then you had to swim in the water. The water in the lake was 6 degrees and several people already had to stop the race due to undercooling. Feeling still quite fresh I thought it wouldn't be that bad. I dived into to water and indeed, the water was not that cold. Probably the others were just pussy's. I swam and swam and slowed down more and more. Damn, this water is cold! Damn, the shore opposite doesn't seems to get closer... Damn, I am not a wimp, am I? I continued swimming and after for what felt like ages I reached the shore opposite. Yeah! The running continued, first with stiff legs, later easier again. Some more obstacles and the finish was almost there. Then: there was a halfpipe. Already muddy and slippery from the categories before us. You had to run, grap the edge and pull yourself on it. Nooo! Being small, tired and having slippery mud everywhere I already doomed this last obstacle when seeing it. I tried and failed, didn't even come close. Tried again and failed again, not getting closer. Tried another time, almost reached it now! This gave hope and the forth time I managed! Yes! Continued to the finish and made it to the finals!

The finals are Saturday the 16th of April in the Olympic Stadium in Amsterdam. I have 4 tickets to give away so if you want to be there and support me, please let me know!