City Love, City Hate

Last week, while I was writing this post about living in my truck, I was in the process of moving into my apartment in Chicago. It was a bit weird to be writing down all my tips for living in a small space while I was in the process of acquiring all the stuff required to live in a much larger space. While I’m excited about starting a new phase in my career, and I think I made the right choice professionally, I’m not sure I’m sold on living in Chicago.

I loved the minimalism and simplicity of living in a small space on four wheels. I loved being completely (or mostly) independent, free to go wherever my whims took me. I loved being outdoors all day every day. I loved meeting new people every week, and learning from other climbers.

I wasn’t ready to give up life on the road. I miss it. I’ve definitely had some post-move blues here in Chicago, and I’m weathering them as well as I can.

I’ve been trying to keep myself sane and positive. I take it one day at a time. During the move, I accepted that I wasn’t going to be able to train enough to keep getting stronger or better. Instead, I focused on keeping good movement quality while I climbed indoors, and on getting out enough to maintain the gains I made over the summer. This approach–maintain what you have, don’t try to force improvement–is a tip I picked up from 9/10 Climbers Make the Same Mistakes. It gave me a coach-approved excuse to let go of my perfectionist self and just be grateful that I got to climb at all.

Finally, I made plans to get outside! It took three long weeks in Chicago for the stars to align, but I’m headed down to the Red this weekend. If you’ll be around, feel free to send me an email or shoot me a tweet to let me know! :)

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2 thoughts on “City Love, City Hate

  1. I moved to a big nasty city after being on the road for a while and after living in a pretty small city relatively close to rock and other outdoor pursuits…and unlike you, I cant even claim it is going to be good for my career (I have other reasons for the move. Too long to get into it here). Suffice to say – I know the blues. Today I was walking back home from a run and I was so so so tired of hearing honking cars, I wanted to scream right there in the middle of the street. It is driving me crazy – the noise, the crowds. I miss being outdoors regularly. Especially the silence, the emptiness, the simplicity.

    Anyway. One step at a time. I will remind myself that.
    Have fun at the Red. And tell this to yourself: at least you can go to the Red (probably regularly, once you have partners etc). It is an awesome place…

    • Hey Juniper,

      It’s tough finding peace in the city, isn’t it? I try to stay active as much as I can, which helps me stay positive and happy.

      I am sending positive energy your way from here in Chicago, and I hope you find ways to get back outside. :)

      All the best!

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