A very late post:
I had written this blog post but was never able to actually post it due to a ‘White Screen of Death’ issue with my WordPress. Now that it’s all good, I’m catching up on some old posts. Here’s one from a kettlebell competition I attended on June 21.
Sometimes there will be humbling experiences that make you realize what is important when thrown into the heat of competition. My last competition was definitely one of them.
This past weekend I competed at the First Annual Niagara Falls Kettlebell Sport Open Championship hosted by my good friends Jennifer Hintenberger and Vice Lujan of Make It Happen St. Catharines in partnership with the American Kettlebell Alliance (AKA). With 86 lifters, this was the largest kettlebell meet ever held in Canada. It was a very well organized and positive lifting environment with great prizes for all the top lifting gireviks.
I have been training on and off for the last 7 weeks – about 14 training sessions – since the Agatsu KB Championships in April, making it 14 weeks total since I began my journey with the 20kg bell. Although my GS coach Jason Dolby couldn’t be there in person with me, his superb programming throughout has helped keep me on track with my training and prepare me for this day.
I had set some high level goals for myself at this competition. It was my 2nd time competing with the 20kg bell and I wanted to hit 100 reps in 20kg long cycle to achieve CMS (Candidate for Master of Sport). Alternatively, if that didn’t happen I told myself I would be perfectly happy with beating my PR of 84 reps and surviving the full 10 minutes under the bell.
On the day of the competition, I found out I was up against 8 other lifters in the 68+ kg weight class (yikes!). The most I’ve ever had in my weight class, which also meant added pressure to step up my game. I was scheduled to lift on the 23rd flight so I had plenty of time to relax and warm up for my set.
The result – I got 86 reps in 20kg long cycle! A 2 rep PR over my previous competition. I could’ve had 90+ reps if it weren’t for a few no-counts I encountered along the way. Live and learn.
Looking back, I really felt I could’ve had better technique for this comp but as time passed, the bell started feeling heavy so my technique may have slipped somewhere along the way.
I came in 5th out of 8 lifters. The winners all got 108, 100, and 96 reps. I felt bummed about the whole thing and my performance but made peace with it and realized that it’s about the journey and not always about winning a gold medal at the end of the day…even though that will always be my ultimate goal. It should be more of a personal victory thing. I still got on the platform and did my best. My saving grace was hitting that PR! With all said and done, it’ll be back to the drawing board to perfect a few things, before returning to the platform.
Kettlebell can be such a grueling sport and sometimes the gains are small. In this case, a 2 rep gain. Patience and persistence is a virtue and I know that will be key if I want to hit my CMS and MS ranks with the 20kg. Anything is possible and I will get this in time.
My body has been feeling tired from all the high volume work with the heavier bells so I’m going to listen to my body and take a step back from it all. 20kg can be frickin’ heavy! So my plan is to recharge myself, do more outdoor activities, and focus on some metabolic conditioning workouts so i can drop some weight and just improve my overall body conditioning. Perhaps take up a new sport for a change of scenery. This will all help me get dialed in once again with my body and nutrition.
When I go back to kettle, my plan will be to do some basics/assistance drills with the lighter bells to perfect my technique then crush my PR at the next competition.