Sunday, January 11, 2015

Had my first strongman meet yesterday. It was a blast and an incredible learning experience.

For my second competitive experience I again had a scrappy attitude about going in without much task-specific training and...well, I got what I paid for. I did even better than I anticipated at the deadlift and rather hopeless on everything else except the tire flip.

Got about 4 and a half hours of sleep. I went to bed early enough to get around 6 but I couldn't stay dead. I'd slept 9 hours every night for weeks before so I woke up feeling energetic. Had an awesome breakfast at a restaurant right next to the hotel: meat omelet, potatoes, and 4 pieces of toast.

I finally met Jared/Emevas in person as I was signing up. Quite a few years removed from the first time we tried to arrange a sparring session and he was concerned that me being a minor might be a problem.

First event was the press medley with a 250 axle, 130 lb circus dumbbell, a fire hydrant, and 190 lb keg. I suffered for not practicing cleans in so long when I got the axle up high but nowhere near my chest to shelf it. It was basically a high pull. Who knows if I would have gotten closer by continental cleaning (probably not).

The circus dumbbell surprised me with how hard it was to hold stably. I stupidly kept rolling it around in my hand trying to find some imaginary sweet spot rather than just gripping it tighter and throwing it up. I got it over me but couldn't lockout, so I just dashed over to the fire hydrant, which was very easy but the likes of which I forgot to hold the lockout of in my hustle. Next, the keg. I had NO idea what to do with my hands so I basically wrestled around with it for the remainder of the time, trying to feel my way into a position that I could press. All in all, one actual implement successfully lifted.

The tire deadlift event was next. Some kinda meet magic happened here. I shot up with 480, 500, 520, 560, and then, astonishingly, pulled 600. Even considering the extra height this was a massive PR. Couldn't break 640, though.

After what felt like several weeks later it was time for the 610 yoke walk of fail. This was soul crushing and the hardest event by far. Although my footwork should have been better it was mostly my body simply not being strong enough. I wobbled and dropped my way down to the end somehow, which I'm at least thankful for. After I crossed the line I turned around to fight my way back only for the time to run out.

At this point my back was seriously starting to worry me. Pain in my side from those blasted standing dumbbell rows months ago had been present after the press medley but the yoke really made me feel it. Hurt to breathe and couldn't bend over without wheezing. Jared kindly took me to his car and gave me some Motrin and an Icy-Hot application. I still felt in pain but was inclined not to let him or Shaquille O'Neal down, so I had a go at the tire flip next. THIS was fun and I felt I did okay with the 640 lb tire. I was slow but determined and could have kept going after the clock ran out. Ended up making it about a third of the way down, maybe a little less. My back even felt better from it.

Last were the stones. About 90% of my effort went into applying the tacky I was lent and the rest failing to get the first stone up on the platform (I believe it was 270).

I was stunned at how long this lasted, almost 11 hours from the time I first stepped into the gym. Munching on walnuts throughout the day staved off hunger perfectly well, though. From here on out, I want to actually take meet training (whatever the sport) more seriously and make a competitive showing instead of just showing up to wing it. I'm also going to gradually resume the weight drop after a week or so of rest and ample eating.

I'm incredibly glad I didn't call it quits early because of my back. Perseverence for the future is definitely something I took home with me. That and some gnarly arms.

1 comment:

  1. Great write-up. It was fun to watch from the outside and see you pick up the events as you went along. Like watching a baby take it's first steps, haha. Glad we could finally meet, and let it be known that I admire your ability to eat so frequently before training and not vomit, haha. Enjoy the stone hickies and good luck with the continued cut. I'll keep you posted on any future events