himself tiring on the sheer wall

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redgiant

Senior Member
Cantonese, Hong Kong
Example:
“Do it,” Brandt grunted, himself tiring on the sheer wall. He dug in as Vanderwalt put one foot then the other on his shoulders. “Go!” The Brit pushed off, gaining precious inches up the wall.

Source: The Betrayed Series: Ultimate Omnibus Collection with EXCLUSIVE post-Shiva short story (The Complete Betrayed Series) ,McCray, Carolyn

Background:Three soldiers worked their way to a heavily guarded shack in a jungle to rescue four CIA operatives from the hands of a Mexican drug cartel. With the cartel members close on their heels, they wasted no time in fleeing back to their car parked outside the jungle. But their escape path was blocked by an eight-foot wall. Their slim lead was cut to almost nothing as they were struggling to climb over the wall. When the enemies arrived and started firing at them, one of the soldiers, Brandt, offered to let Vanderwalt to stand on his shoulders to climb up the wall.

Hi native speakers,

I'm not sure if "tiring" could be used in the way the author wrote it. Would you prefer "himself being tired/exhausted" instead?
 
  • redgiant

    Senior Member
    Cantonese, Hong Kong
    Hi pob14,
    I got ten pages of results for "I'm tiring myself". I guess it's not entirely uncommon in English. The fact that it didn't sound right to me at first reading was probably because "exhausting himself" sounded more palatable than "tiring himself"
     

    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    "Tiring himself" does mean "making himself tired." However, "himself tiring" generally (and I think in this context) means "he was also getting tired, as well as others." Was perhaps the fact that others were "tiring" mentioned earlier in the passage?
     
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