by Jacob Carr


Action. This Is The Way.

Now that you have a framework on how to attack a project-level route and a way to practice execution in the gym you can now put them into practice and allow yourself to perform on the rock. You can act on what you want. You could choose to put on cruise control, but you will never reach your goals. Discipline and execution will not develop themselves, it takes one simple action at a time to develop discipline, and with discipline comes execution—day in, day out.

Think about your yard or garden for a second. A nice lawn or garden takes deliberate action to provide nourishment, pruning, and life. Having a successful garden or manicured lawn takes time, effort, and discipline. On the flip side, weeds will grow without you doing a single thing to that garden or lawn. No watering, no fertilizer, they stick out and thrive on your inaction. The lawn won’t become weedless by itself, the garden won’t grow vegetables on its own. You can’t try and live disciplined, you become a disciplined person by the actions you take.

With this in mind, I want to challenge you to write down 2 to 4 actions you believe a disciplined person takes. These could be actions such as making the bed each morning, it could be practicing a time of meditation, prayer, or mindfulness routine. I want you then to take those actions and make a similar list of what actions you believe a disciplined climber takes. These actions could be warming up every time they train or climb, or a disciplined climber taking notes on their workout or climbing day. Next, I want you to write the easiest action you can take to achieve what you believe a disciplined person and a disciplined climber would do. Put a frequency on the action, meaning how many times you will do this action per day/week/month.

At the end of the time frame, you can look back and begin to take action on things you thought were too big or too daunting. Remember, the garden doesn’t bud in a day, it takes effort, discipline, and patience. After you act on your easy goal for the allotted time, add another layer, when you accomplish that, add another layer and reflect on how the actions are going. Are your actions still serving your end goal, the person you want to be, or the climber you want to be? Reflect, refine, and act accordingly.

A religious person once said that the path to hell is paved with good intentions. What does that hell look like for you? Good intentions will only allow you to sit behind excuses, and won't allow you to take responsibility for the outcome of your life or your climbing. Take action for how your climbing day will go, otherwise, it will either be luck that you sent or completely deflating and allowing you to hide behind your ego. Action is the only way forward. Take responsibility for what you want in life, act, execute, and go forward.

 One of the hardest things to coach and train is getting yourself to believe that you can accomplish something without it being tied to your self-worth or your perception of how good of a climber you are. While practicing execution through your daily life in the way you execute a great lift, a heel hook, or a clip on a route all tie back into improving your confidence around yourself and your abilities. Execution and performance are the same if you put in the work long term, just like a garden.

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This brings us to the last section of the climb: the redpoint crux. Rinse and repeat the rest of the steps as before. However, take care to climb it, visualize yourself climbing it, make sure to know where your feet and hands will be when you are at the chains, and feel where you will be when you are clipping them. This should be one of the more important aspects of the beta because you don’t want to leave any doubt when you are at the chains on the send-go. 

A few weeks ago I noticed someone had written “Goals>>>Dreams” on a whiteboard here in our climbing gym. While I understand where they are coming from, I would like to tell them and you that “Goals = Dreams”. Our dreams can only be achieved through the actions we set for ourselves. Goals are not greater than our dreams. Our dreams are what motivate us to achieve, execute, and perform well. Our dreams give us a heading to where we want to go, goals are the stepping stones on the way to realizing our dreams. So, wherever you are, start acting on the dreams you have, developing discipline, taking responsibility for yourself, and executing the small things every day. You don’t have time to waste, life is short, act decisively. You can either be the passenger in the cab of your life or you can be the driver. If you choose to be the driver, the momentum of consistent execution will take you where your dreams could never dare, keep going forward, be better, and don’t look back.  

Always Forward,




Jacob has a dual master's degree in Strength and Conditioning as well as Sports Nutrition. He is also a Certified Personal Trainer with the NSCA. Jacob started his Climb Strong journey as an intern with us as part of his education. He arrived just two weeks before we were forced to close for COVID in March 2019. Jacob kept in touch and is now with us full time as a climbing coach as well as taking on a personal training athletes at Elemental. He has worked in a Physical Therapy setting in the past and has interest in functional movement training to ensure athletes move well for their lifespan. He loves climbing, mountain biking, and surfing.

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