The question of laziness

After getting my ass kicked the last 4-5 times out skiing (or at least not feeling like a powder slaying god), moral has been low. One result is that I’m going through a period of nostalgia for summer. Thinking about mountain biking on dry dirt, or catching trout in clear water.

The other result is that I’ve been obsessing about how to not suck at skiing.  At least, how to suck a bit less.  The most important way is to keep skiing a lot, which I will continue to do (see below for complications).  Another, more remote but nonetheless weighty, answer is that I will buy new gear.   Not this winter, but before next, I intend to plunk down the 1500+ or so US dollars a proper BC downhill rig will run.  The question is, what stuff?

The most obvious answer and sub-question would be a get a Dynafit ski rig, weighing lightness v. burliness.  Most anything would be a massive improvement over doing p-turns with 3 pins and floppy tele boots.  However, I also don’t have all that much invested in skiing per se, which leads to the other option: splitboarding.

Snowboarding is reputed to be easier to learn, and let us face it, is waay cooler than skiing.  Logistically splitboarding is more complex than skiing, but that sort of thing plays to my strengths and is less of a concern.  It’s certainly less efficient on rolling terrain, but I have light tele gear for that.  So my initial thoughts would be to get some used Scarpa F1s and a Voile splitter.  Perhaps.  (I welcome the thoughts of the at least two accomplished splitboarders that read).

In any case, I need to keep getting out and learning, the glories of which I attempted to venerate in the most recent post.  But it’s hard.  Working hard uphill only to get more beat up on the down is not the easiest thing to psyche up and leave pre-dawn to do.  And that ambivalence bleeds out and over.  Yesterday I rallied to skin Big Mountain after work, but didn’t summit after I got into the fog and didn’t want to flail my way back down with no visability in the rapidly rising darkness.  This morning would have been a stellar powder day, but I reset the alarm and slept for another hour.

I am in short, lazy, and lack discipline.  Always have.  Want to get better at it, but always seem to falter (haven’t done regular core stuff since T-day, for instance).  Frustrating, disheartening, the sort of subtle failure that engendered further failure and inaction.

I’m in good company in claiming to be lazy.  Greg Hill told me he is lazy.  Hard to believe in someone closing in on 2 million feet of vertical gain this year.  Evidence suggest that a mountaineer’s mountaineer feels the same way.  Peter Croft, one of the most impressive rock climbers ever, is a notorious TV fan.  In short, it is clear that everyone suffers from the same potentially debilitating shadow when faced with the choices that, in aggregate, make a good adventurer and/or athlete into a great one.  The question is, what enables some to be so much more consistently good at going from idea to reality, from motion to act, and from desire to spasm?

I don’t know.  Practice, I suspect.  Self-knowledge, to a certain extent.  But at this juncture, my explanations are frustrating, primarily because none of them have helped me get much better at overcoming my own shadow.

But I intend to keep trying.  I did my core routine this morning, and in the process tweaked my shoulder doing pull ups.



21 responses to “The question of laziness”

  1. Been dealing with similar issues here. The enemy is me. Always has been. Always will be. Nature of the beast. Much easier to retreat into mediocrity with any number of excuses – I am too old, I am a dad now, I don’t have the time… than doing the heavy lifting. The not fun base, core, simple, but mundane and hard work that makes big rides and joy and a pleasure…

  2. Ha. No one is lazier than me, and I am not talking about working out. I mean every area of life. If I didn’t need riding, and happen to love demanding technical riding, and didn’t make commuting a part of my life I would be a total slug.

  3. The only thing keeps me getting after it seems to be finding a partner. I’m completely, totally, and pathetically o.k. with letting myself down early in the morning when the goods await, but I am completely, totally, and amazingly unable to let down a partner. THAT is how I get out there and get after it. I must say it is kind of reassuring to hear others talk about being lazy though because I really dislike knowing I have that apathy towards something I love so much.

    Splitboarding. I could write pages but this is not the forum for it. Let me know if you want to bounce some questions off me.

  4. BTW, the fact that I have to “confirm” my subscription to comments for every post on WordPress is lame. There must be a way around that.

    Right now: You comment, subscribe to comments, get an email that takes you to a link that you have to click in order to be notified. Waaay to busy a process.

    1. Yeah, Dave, could you add a link to the Comment RSS feed to your page somewhere, please?

  5. Oh samh I understand. If I didn’t have “Dan” waiting for me at dawn summer and winter, I doubt I would get as many big rides in.

    1. Maybe we all just need “Dans” in our life?

      1. “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

        Proverbs 27:17

      2. Never been much of one for the bible but that’s a phrase I can get with, Eric.

  6. I just read the T.S Eliot poem this am. Pretty powerful.

    1. One of my all-time favorites.

  7. Yes get a split board, been doing it for 10 years and I can count on one hand the times that people on skis had an advantage. Usually it’s an advantage since you can power through rougher snow conditions. Voile plates and hard boots. any will suffice. Not sure on the F1 setup.

    1. Does the Swallowtail have limited application, or does it work for all conditions? I identify the F1s as Scarpas fit my feet, and the F1s are light and can be gotten cheap now that folks are going for TLT5s.

      1. a swallowtail design will be good for a dedicated bc board – in fact it will excel at that. The main board-design question that you should consider instead is rocker vs. non-rocker. A rockered board will perform slightly less in cruddy or icy snow but will outperform in the pow. Nearly all companies are now making boards with varying states of rocker and I don’t think it’s a marketing scheme.

        Regarding boots you’re asking questions about Dynafit equipment. Are you directing those questions to splitboarders or because you’re still contemplating telemark equipment as well? I ask because there are many splitboarders running hardboot combos.

  8. In case you need another reason you should probably check out the humorous video at

  9. I suck too and am far lazier. But really we are both improving and are lazy only compared to the insane friends we have.

    1. When I was living in Minnesota I knew some badass people but I was probably one of the elite in the town I lived in. By moving to Bozeman I have relegated myself to a place many, many notches down the totem pole. I will never be as badass as the likes of some of the people who live/have lived here (Anker, Chabot, Tackle, Lowe, Saari, the list goes on).

  10. the swallow tail shreds everything. but the size of the 195 I have is the limiting factor. It’s too big for tight stuff even though that’s what I get suckered into using it on anyway. Voiles old 178 swallowtail would have been a fun compromise. I don’t understand short swallowtails.

    my 173 is my steep spring board

    I have some 7 year old lowa AT boots that I use. I don’t think the boot matters much, keep the top buckles open and in walk mode 100% of the time.
    But sure- a dynafit toe piece for ski mode would be nice…

    If I could find size 48 F1/3’s for less than $200 I’d try them.
    I’m giving the venture storm 180 a good look.

  11. Dynafit toe pieces for climbing are a given in my next rig, snowboard or ski.

    195 is a huge board.

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