As humans, we all need to engage in a bit of healthy competition every now and then. It demands focus, discipline, will power, hard work, It pushes us to step out of our comfort zones to put forth our best efforts and to do things that we may have never tried otherwise. And when we finally achieve what we set out to do, it boosts confidence, makes us feel good, and teaches us that anything can be achieved just by focusing on the goal at hand.
Having said that, I recently gave into a compulsive urge to sign myself up for the Arnold Sports Festival Kettlebell Championships hosted by the IKFF (International Kettlebell and Fitness Federation) in Columbus, Ohio. I just had to do it. For myself. For the thrill of competing. For fun. So it’s set. I’ll be competing in the womens one arm long cycle clean and jerk event using a 12kg kettlebell. I figure if I’m ever going to compete, I might as well do it at the Arnold Sports Festival, which is said to be the largest sports and fitness event in the nation. This is going to be HUGE! I’m looking forward to competing alongside many of my fellow kb lifting friends and masters of sport. For those new to the sport, the goal of long cycle is for competitors to get as many perfect reps (clean & jerks) within a 10 minute time frame. For women, that would mean 5 minutes on one arm then switch to do 5 minutes on the other. Men use 2 kettlebells.
Why am I competing?
Last year I said that one of my goals for 2010 was to enter a Girevoy (Kettlebell) Sport competition and I am not one to back down on my word. Plus, I enjoy being motivated by a good challenge and the spirit of competition will only help me push myself further. I’ve only been incorporating long cycle timed sets into my workouts since September of last year but have been able to get some pretty decent numbers just from practicing lots of reps on my own. Then after attending a few weekend kettlebell workshops here and there and with some good advice from friends and international strength coaches, I saw improvement in my form, technique, and as a result, my numbers have also gone up by at least 20 reps. A kettlebell competition was naturally the next progression and will be great test of my endurance, strength, and work capacity.
The event is on March 7, 2010, which means I still have 34 days left to train. This will be my first competition and I couldn’t be more excited!
The plan now is to shed 5lbs and be able to perform 130 reps in 10 minutes. My training will include timed sets with 16kg and 12kg prograde kettlebells, indian clubs for joint mobility and to keep shoulders loose, short/intense 15-20lb kettlebell workouts on lighter days, and a few spin and muay thai classes thrown in there.
I think just stepping up to the platform and competing will be a great experience of its own. At the end of the day, I’m really just doing it all for fun to see how I’ll do. Regardless, I’m going to train hard and aim to get to the top. Winning will definitely be an added bonus 🙂 Wish me luck!