Our first question comes from an old friend of ours from Okieland:
Dear P&C, How do I balance a strong desire to have a healthy relationship with my wife, care for and support a baby girl, and have enough time left to support my climbing habit?
Wig: Listen man. I get it, I really do. It's gonna be hard to tell your wife and child that climbing is in fact more important than them (which may or may not be my personal projections), and you shouldn't have to put them (or yourself) through that kind of torture. You are in a unique position though. As a young married man you have some pretty young friends. Young single dude friends. Convince these strapping bucks that babysitting a baby girl is a sure fire way to get some much needed attention from la femmes. It's a complete lie, but who will he be to question a dude married to a hot lady who will soon be bearing his children. I'm just saying utilize these resources to free up some time in your schedule. Go climbing. Take your wife on a date (climbing). Do spend some time with your kid though (climbing) after all these are the years where your daughter won't hate you for being a stingy, dull and very uncool father because you won't throw down $600 for a new YSL purse and a new car for your money eating bratty teenager.
Really though? Enjoy fatherhood and never climbing again sucka!
As with most great conundrums, the answer to your question is “it depends.” Is the demon you're trying to feed craving outside cragging 5 days a week? If that's the case, well, honestly you're fucked. With you're nearest crag being 2 hours away, there is no way that will happen. You seem hung up on this whole balance thing-the only thing I try to balance is climbing and drinking. If it were me, I'd say fuck it and get divorced but I doubt that's even a consideration for you.
If on the other hand, your demon wants to cranks HARD, there is hope. It's only a glimmer but its there. You're going to have to want it and work for it. Here's the way I see it. You need more time for climbing so something has got to go. Obviously it's not family or you wouldn't have asked this question, and it's probably not work because you've got to support said family. That really only leaves one thing- sleep. You're going to have to become one of these mythical men who not only survive, but indeed thrive by sleeping 2 hours a night, or maybe 10 hours on Sunday. You're gonna to have to embrace copious doses of caffeine and sleep deprivation as a way of life. You've got to commit to getting up before the family to train. Since gyms don't open that early, you'll have to build one hell of a home training facility. I know you're not a rich man, so you might have to get creative to fund this little project. My suggestion- sell blow. That shit is profitable. Or so I'm told.
Buy training books. (Self Coached Climber, Training For Climbing, Performance Rock Climbing...). Read them. And train the piss out of yourself. I'm told it works. I've never had the discipline to stick to any sort of regimen, but I also have the luxury of climbing outside 15 minutes from my house. I don't know how disciplined you are, but if you lack it, find a self help coach or hypnotist to buy it from.
Loose weight. This is almost like a freebie. Most weight loss experts will tell you that real weight loss isn't so much about dieting as it is a lifestyle change. Fuck that. Just quit eating! Works for me. There is no time sink away from the family and you can climb harder by doing nothing!
Get after it. When you do get that precious time on the rock, you've got to quit fucking around. The best piece of climbing advice I've ever been given was from Nick Duttle, almost in passing: try hard. You've got to give up the idea that you're not ready for something (unless we're talking about a serious x rated route) and just go for you want with all you've got, with a balls to the wall, pedal to the metal, pull till you pop mentality. No toproping. No excuses. Sounds harsh but that's real yo.