Can I get to 5.13a?

  • Creator
  • #51709

    I currently climb at 5.10d and I have a goal to lead Belly Full of Bad Berries, 5.13a. I have a hangboard and I will be making a crack machine in the next couple weeks. I weigh 145 lbs and I am 6’1″ so I feel I mainly need to increase my strength. I want to climb the route sometime in August so I have 6 months to get there. Is this possible or have I set my goal to high?

Posted In: Climbing

  • Participant
    bryce on #51732

    I also own a normal pull up bar, TRX, 5 lbs and 12 lbs dumbbells, 3 lbs and 5 lbs strap on weights, some elastic bands for resistance, and a jump box.

    David Thompson on #51906

    Hi Bryce.

    While one should never rule out the possibility, it is highly unlikely that you will be able to make such a progression in that short amount of time. That said, off-width climbing is very different from most other styles of rock terrain so climbing BFOB may just require a willingness to suffer.
    In terms of specific exercises, perhaps doing upside-down core work with gravity boots and learning arm and leg bars and upside down climbing on a steep artificial crack may be your best bet.

    vik.waghray on #51986

    Hi David, on a tangential note how would you recommend someone climbing in the 5.10+/11- range improve their onsight grade to 5.11+/12- within a similar timeframe of a few months? Assuming they have close access to outdoor bouldering, sport and trad cragging, as well as home training materials such as pull-up bar, rings, and a hangboard.

    David Thompson on #52049

    Hi Vik, the best way to improve onsight grade is to try onsighting more. If you are at a climbing area, take a specific day that is an onsight day. Attempt all of the routes within the grade range you are comfortable redpointing.
    If you want to onsight 12- then consider being able to redpoint 12/12+. So have an onsight day at the crags, and a redpoint/projecting day.
    You have a good set of basic workout equipment that will help you with basic strength. There are many exercises you can do with these, but emphasize pulling, fingers, and core.

    Anonymous on #53347

    First, Dave has way more experience and knowledge than I do with rock climbing, so when in doubt, listen to him.

    Second, the best thing that you can do for your progression in climbing is to dial your expectations way back. The number of wunderkinds that can go from zero to hero in a few months is a rounding error. The rest of us need to accept (and enjoy) a much slower progression.

    Dave may disagree (see point number one), but if you’re climbing 5.10, I wouldn’t worry so much about strength training. You’ll get much more bang for your buck out of focused practice on technique.

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