Sunday, 14 August 2011

14 AUG 11 -- The Day After !

The competition went quite well yesterday. First, the weather was perfect, sunny and dry. A good crowd turned out for the event, and the spectators were very supportive of the competitors with lots of cheering and applause during each competitor's turn. We had 17 male competitors and 7 women competing in their own division. The event was held in Woodstock, Ontario but most competitors came from a long distance, largely from Toronto and the GTA area, and several from Buffalo, New York. I was very impressed that they took the drive over the border to come.

This competition consisted of four events for both men and women's divisions. There were no weight classes, and it was ranked as a novice/intermediate level competition. The events were as follows:

1. Silver dollar (19") deadlift for max.

241lbs min opener women
421lbs min opener men

2. Log press for reps.

8" log 110lbs women
12" log 220lbs men

3. Frame carry.

245 lbs women
495 lbs men

4. Tire flip.

380lbs women
700lbs men

I did well on the first event, and I was quite pleased with the pulls I was able to make. I started conservatively, opting for a 541 lbs. pull for the first attempt. It felt very light, but the bar on the silver dollar dead lift tends to be bouncy, so I wanted to get a feel by going low. Second attempt was 621 lbs. and it came up very smooth and crisp. Then, I had to quickly determine my final weight. Dilemma time: do I go for broke, or stay high and reasonable. I made the decision to pull 681, after looking over the other competitors final weights, as it would be 20 lbs. higher than theirs. At the same time, just before I made the pull at 681, I had to bite my tongue as I wanted to go for 701 at the last second. If I wouldn't be able to make the 701, I would be stuck with the second attempt's pull of 621. So, 681 it was, and it came up strong and smooth. I felt like kicking my ass for holding back on 20 lbs, lol. It was still a good scoring weight, and it took me up nicely in points.

The log press was a different matter. I hadn't log pressed since last year's competition, and even during the warm up with the empty log, it felt foreign and the mechanics weren't manifesting in my warm up reps. I watched as the first competitor up was nearly destroyed after a close miss when he lost control of the log and went crashing down to the ground with the log following him. The crowd gasped and based on the view from where I was standing, it seemed a minor miracle that he wasn't seriously hurt.

When it was my turn, I grabbed hold of the log, dropped to a low squat and brought it rolling up to the ready position. As I prepared to make the move to push, I felt dizzy. I put the log down to clear my head, then resumed the attempt. I was able to press the log up, but could barely hold it at the top long enough to bring my head through. Again, the dizziness. I had to drop the log. Zero points due to an incomplete lockout, much disappointment, and confusion as to why I felt dizzy. I attributed some of it to dehydration, so I made sure I drank lots of water when I got back to my seat.

The frame carry was lots of fun. I made the unforgivable error of trying to take too long of a stride forward, and the frame wobbled in my hands, causing me to drop sideways to my left. Undaunted, I pulled it back up and continued onto the 75' line, where the competitor must put the frame down, turn, and head back to the start line. I made it back, no falls or drops, and the form was better. I will have to practice this event in the future. It's not like the farmers' walk at all in terms of feel, although it appears similar. Balanced walking is critical with this event.

The last event of the day, the good 'ole tire flip. 700 lbs. of pure fun. I enjoyed this event the most. I think all the tire flips practiced at work paid off, because the tire felt relatively easy to move, and from what I could see in the video my son filmed, my form looked alright. I managed to work out seven flips before being timed out. I could have kept going, but the time was only 60 seconds till the finish is called.

Here is a vid of my events:

My final score tally was 28 points, and although I am placed on the scoreboard as number 11, technically I would be 10th as the two competitors ahead of me tied for ninth place. In last year's event, I placed 9th out of 17, but I was more pleased with my overall performance this time around, which I believe to be better than last year's.  A year's worth of 5/3/1, with a deviation for some Smolov squatting, paid off. I also saw a lot of improvement in other competitors who were there last year, and I congratulated them on a job well done.

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