May 14, 2015
I met Alex Barrows in Rodellar in 2011 when he introduced himself as the Duke of Barrows, which we believed for several hours. It would've been so cool if that had been true, but alas. He's just a British PhD student at Sheffield University with a hilarious sense of humor. He's also really strong, despite his rigorous school schedule and lack of good weather where he lives.
When I met Alex, he was trying really hard on a 14a for weeks. Then I saw him a couple years later in the Red River Gorge, where I immediately noticed he'd improved dramatically. He was onsighting 13+ and sending 14s like it was his job. Then I heard he sent Era Vella (5.14d in Spain) this spring, '15, and I had to know how he was improving so much.
This interview is an extremely detailed account of his training plan and philosophies, with some charming British humor thrown in there.
If you haven't heard of the ArmAid yet, definitely give it a look-see. It's a nutcracker-type self-massage tool for your poor, overused arms, and it actually works.
Intro and outro song: Yesterday by Build Buildings