Lattice Training Log Part 4: Slight progress. Hints of trouble.



I did the front-3-back-3 hangboard session, increasing to 3 sets of each hang instead of 2 like the previous week. Last week, the last back-3 set felt kind of challenging, and this week all sets felt pretty easy.

Boulder Experimentation

Next was the boulder experimentation session. I decided to [video] this time.
The video is a good illustration of the sort of moves I’m attempting, but not a good representation of the practice overall. I thought initially that I’d put every recorded attempt in there, but the video ended up very long and very repetitive and boring. I tried a lot of other moves that ended up being too easy or impossible, and I had a lot more identical attempts on many of the moves shown.
One thing that’s been pretty fun is to play around with adjacent moves. I think you can catch a couple examples of this in the video. When I make a move, I try a very similar move but with slightly worse holds, or maybe an additional step-up.
It was pretty fun, and I ended up coming up with a toe catch, and getting a couple of moves that I couldn’t last week. Pushing with the back foot on lateral movements is something that unlocked some moves for me, and it was a good reminder to attend to that when moving dynamically.

Boulder Triplets

After that I did boulder triplets. I felt like I had a TON more fuel in the tank compared to the previous week, which was really exciting! I ended up bumping up the difficulty of the boulders as I worked through the sets. I really squeezed everything I had out of myself on this session. I barely finished the last boulder, laid gasping on the mats for a few minutes and crawled to my car. Have you ever been so fatigued by a workout you kind of felt like crying? The rest of the day was spent moving as little as possible, other than the evening mobility session. I ended up heading to bed about 2 hours early.


This was a rest day.
Considering the thrashing I gave myself the day before, I felt surprisingly well! I keep feeling this sense of surprise because I have found that my body is recovering quicker than what I’m used to from my normal training.
Before this training plan, I was doing mostly high-intensity and low-volume work. Due to the low volume, my overall level of energy was always quite high, but it took me a while to recover from the intensity. It was probably a combination of neurological fatigue, as well as tendon strain, that left me achy and stiff, and feeling like I couldn’t really try hard for a few days after.
The high-volume, moderate intensity training is feeling very different. I feel hungrier and so I think I’ve been eating a lot more. I also feel quite tired, so I think I’ve been sleeping more (I’ve even taken a few naps). I’m also doing the daily mobility routine to get my muscles moving after sitting for work all day, and the ARC session to get my blood flowing. Overall, I feel a lot better despite doing a lot more volume, and I think that I’m even recovering better from my high-intensity day.


Max Efforts

I did a better job warming up on the tension board. I started by just doing some feet-on traverses to get my fingers warm, then played around with moves on the bigger holds, and especially focused on driving with my feet. I then repeated some problems up to V3. [video]
After watching my video from last week, Billy recommended starting and ending the session with a really hard climb that I can complete, to get a feel for where I am that day. I tried to find a V5 that would be a good fit. I tried a couple, but found moves that I couldn’t do, so I quickly transitioned into the max-effort part of the workout.
I did a lot better than last week with not getting stuck on the same moves.
I revisited the V6 from last week, and found that I was able to consistently get the bottom section (up to H11), I also consistently hit the move up to the second pinch (D14), and had a much easier time driving my foot on H5 when doing so. Still having a lot of trouble with rolling into E16, since that requires maintaining good tension on the high foot H8, but I’m feeling progress.
After spending just 2-3 goes on each side, I moved on to try some moves on 2 more V7s. I ended up finding a crux to practice on each that I’ll describe in more detail in future posts.
At the end of the session I went back to trying a V5, but ended up getting my first injury of the training plan - I ripped off a callus on my left pinky. I taped it up and decided to try the same move on the other side, and ripped off the same callus on my right pinky! I guess I need to do a better job filing down my calluses before my tension board sessions in the future.

Wide Pull-ups / Floor Core

The previous week I did my hypertrophy pull-ups and bar core after the max effort session, but I felt like I wouldn’t really be able to put in a good effort after the max efforts session, so I decided to swap it for the wide pull-ups / floor core which is a bit less intense.
For wide pull-ups, I attempted 4 sets of 6 with 35lb/12kg. Just like last week, I failed on rep 5 of set 4. However, considering that I was a lot more tired this week, I will take that as a win.
The floor core routine consists of dolphin pose (30s each side), pushups (8), boat pose (30s), crunches (20) and side planks (30s each side). I’m supposed to try and do all of it in one go, and then rest and do a second set.
Last week I had to take considerable rest between all exercises, and do the crunches in sets of 10. This week I managed to not rest between all of the exercises (though I still had to take a break half-way through the crunches). I did require the full 2 minutes of rest between sets though. Next week I’m going to try and eliminate the rest between crunches, and after that work on reducing the inter-set rest time.
So, slight progress all around!


Another rest day!
I have this recurring shoulder issue that creeps up sometimes when I start to really push my climbing. My shoulder felt pretty tender today when I was throwing the ball for my dog. It made me pretty concerned about my ability to recover from this level of intensity.


Today’s primary objective was to do an hour of boulder circuits - where I can work on more sustained sequences rather than just maximal moves. I decided to try and do this session on the tension board as well.


I felt pretty happy with my warmup from Wednesday, so I decided to repeat it. During the feet-on-the-floor traversing, I’m trying to keep my weight in my lats, engage my core and mobilize my hips. Later, I’m working on feeling tension in my feet through the whole movement as I make big moves on the larger handholds on the board.
After a few minutes of these two exercises, I repeated some problems V0-V3, and then felt like I was ready to climb V4/V5 for the main session.

Boulder Circuits

I ended up sending 2 V4s (on both sides) during this session, and trying some V5s. I was able to figure out some longer sections on the V5s and work out the cruxes on a couple of them, but didn’t end up sending any.
This session did not feel very good. My body felt stiff and beat up, and my shoulder pain flared up about 45 minutes in. Starting with my right hand on F13, I crossed into G15 with my left, and got a stab of pain around my right deltoid when unwinding into J16.
I decided to call it quits on the tension board, and went downstairs to find some easier terrain. While I still felt pretty bad, I managed to flash a V5 and a V6, which did make me feel a bit better, just to remind myself that tension board grades and gym grades are not one and the same.


I warmed up with some 5/3 ARC before the repeater session. While I do these I’m also doing a bit of practice with staying in my lats rather than my biceps, or focusing on bringing my hips into the wall. Overall it’s really easy climbing though, and feels like active recovery.


My goal is to do 6 sets of 50sec 7:3 repeaters at bodyweight, with 3 min rest between sets. The first week, I managed 3.5 sets on half crimp, and had to finish the last 2.5 on full crimp. I failed on the last hang of the last set. This week, I managed 4 sets in half-crimp, and finished all the reps of the last set. I felt like I still had a bit in the tank. I hope that next week I can do 5 sets in half-crimp.

Pull ups

In week 1 I did the pull ups and bar core on my max effort day. I felt really beat up after that and I didn’t feel like I could give a good effort in that session, so I decided to do it on my non-climbing day this week. My numbers improved, but this is at least in part to me being more fresh going into the session.
The goal is to do 6 sets of 8 bodyweight pull-ups with 2 min rest between. The first week I managed 8 8 8 7 5 5. This week I managed 8 8 8 7 6 6.

Bar Core

I do these exercises with 2-3 min of rest, then rest 5-10 mins and do a second set. Again, I did them after my max effort session the first week, so part of the progress is likely from that.
toes to bar: I managed 6 and 6 in the first week, and 8 and 8 today
hanging L sit: I managed 15s and 15s the first week, and 25s and 15s today
windshield wipers: I managed 2 sets of 4 (per side) the first week, and 2 sets of 5 today
levers: I managed 10 and 8 lever tucks the first week, and 7 and 5 1-legged levers today.

Reflecting on the week

It was a tough week. I felt like I really pushed myself in every training session. While on some days I felt really good after, on others I felt pretty awful - stiff and achy, worried about re-inflaming my shoulder, and consequently in a bad mood and generally not pleasant to be around (my apologies to my wife).
I’m also feeling some frustration with the Tension board. I bought some magnets and tape upon recommendations from folks on Reddit, but it’s still a pretty frustrating experience. I feel like I would be able to do V5s, but even with the tape and magnets I end up hunting for holds and feet when I’m on the wall, which means I’m not really able to focus. Switching the magnets around between climbs is a huge pain.
I think it would be fine if I had a ton of time to work out the sequence and memorize it, but I’m also trying to keep my sessions to a certain time schedule and the time pressure is really stressing me out! I’m seriously considering just donating a light kit to my gym (though that will not bring me any relief for at least 2-3 weeks).
The other big question on my mind is having to do with difficulty. Am I pushing too hard on the tension board? Maybe going after V6-V8 on max effort days, and V4-V5 on moderate days is not right, especially since I have yet to actually finish a V5? Maybe I would benefit from stepping down the difficulty, or only do the max effort session on the tension board?
At the same time, the shoulder pain only occurred towards the end of my session on Friday, and I have plenty of time to rest until Wednesday, when my next max effort session will be. So maybe I should see how it feels to stay at this general level for another week?
I think these are exactly the sort of questions that coaches can answer. I sent my questions along to Billy and will hear back early next week. In the meanwhile I’m really trying to eat well, sleep and destress, and hoping that I will feel better next week.