Ashraf's 2017 Journey (Part 2)

Posted by Iris Lee on

Less than 5 months ever since I got back on the wall after my injury. To be honest, it feels surreal that I’m actually competing in Japan for my 2nd IFSC Boulder World Cup Circuit – 1st being in Navi Mumbai in 2016. Even though I had a pretty short time preparing for it, I honestly feel even more prepared than I ever was. 3 out of those 5 months, I focused more on conditioning and strengthening myself physically. When I realised I was getting back quicker than I thought I would, that’s when I decided to compete in the Japan circuit. So, I set aside about 2 months to just get myself in shape in time for the competition.

Can’t wait to compete on the World stage again! (Photo from IFSC Boulder World Cup 2016 in Navi Mumbai, India)


You’ve probably heard this saying countless times and I’m sure most of you don’t actually believe in it haha. I have to admit, I was one of those people. However, as I only had about 2 months to prepare myself for Japan, I had to do something different. I didn’t want to go for the competition, without actually preparing myself for it. I did some reading and research on various training programs shared by other climbers and I came across a 6-week Power Endurance Training Program by The Training Beta. Without hesitation, I bought it and used it to craft out a Training Program of my own meticulously, planning every week, every day, for the next 2 months.

Before I continue further, just want to say that I’m not sponsored by them or anything like that. I’m just sharing my training and my preparation for the World Cup. 

This was entirely something new to me, and I have never come up or even followed any kind of training plan. It was definitely difficult to have the discipline to finish all the drills and sets for each day, as there will always be that urge to just procrastinate and climb with other climbers at the gym. But I once saw a video, and it reminded of how procrastination does not actually exist. It’s just us making up a word because we don’t want it that badly. I knew how much I wanted this and yes out of those 6 weeks of intense training, there were a few days where I skipped training because I felt extremely tired, or I felt my body giving me signals to just rest. But ultimately, I had faith that the training program will work out, and stuck to it every single day. There were definitely days when all I did was just climb casually with some of the other climbers, but I knew that I had to force myself to have that discipline and carry out what I have planned for that training day.

Towards the end of the 6 weeks, I do feel stronger on some days when I’m just having my casual climbing sessions. But ultimately, whether the training program really helped me or not, that will ultimately depend on how I fare in Hachioji, Japan. Just going to keep feeding myself with positive thoughts and give my all.


For those who read my blog post from last year after my World Cup circuit in India, I want to reiterate my point – IT IS POSSIBLE!!!!!

For those who think that they aren’t strong or good enough to compete on such a huge stage, I would like to really urge you to take that leap and push yourself physically or mentally. You will not know where you stand, or whether you are actually GOOD ENOUGH until you know how you fare in those competitions. Yes, the climbers from Japan, Russia or Germany (just to name a few) are ahead of us by years but do not be disheartened by it at all. I do believe that even though our climbing community is pretty small compared to in those countries, we have what it takes to actually do well. We just lack that belief and drive to go all out for it.

One of the people who I have faith will go far - my sister, Nur Diyana.

Recently, in the Boulder World Cup Circuit in Chongqing, China, Alannah Yip of Canada was the first female Canadian climber to qualify for Finals (HUGE CONGRATS TO HER!!). When I was watching that live, all I could think of was one of our climbers, actually being the first Singaporean to get into the Semi-Finals. It just felt so possible and within our reach. Yes, I said OUR. Not just myself but I have the belief that our very own local home-grown climbers like Hakeem, Dennis, Judith and Vanessa will actually be that first person to do so. Just believe me that by next year, or even the next few circuits, someone will be that person. So I urge all of us, as a climbing community, to continue to support one another, by just believing that IT IS POSSIBLE!

So, in just a few days, I’ll be competing along with a few other climbers from our little red dot. Then I’ll be in Japan for the next couple of weeks and will update on my experience.

Till then, Keep on climbing guys!!

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