Definition Strongest Competition Write Up 30th August 2015
On Sunday 30th August 2015, PTS folk Ali Wilson (me), P-j Gentle and Claire Haynes headed to Peterborough to the Definition Gym to compete in a strongman competition ran by Josh Owen. This was another competition in the crazy charity mission for Ali in competing as much as possible with silly haircuts to raise money for Cancer Research UK. There were three categories, a ladies’ openweight, a men’s U105kg and a men’s openweight. Claire and P-j were in the ladies openweight and Ali was in the men’s U105kg.
The events were a more unusual mix, with a max yoke squat, a max log lift, a truck pull, a car deadlift, a cross carry and atlas stones. It looked quite a heavy and challenging competition, so that seems like fun!
Turning up on the day it was like a big ol’ get together of local strongman and woman enthusiasts! In my class there was only one person I hadn’t either trained with, competed against or refereed over before (Ian Phillips, and it was lovely to meet you!) so it was a very nice friendly catch up with a bunch of friendly faces!
The first event was the yoke squat for max. The yoke was at a set height, you had to go under, squat it up, wait for the down command, and then do that again in the next round once more weight had been added! The ladies started on 120kg and it went up in 10kg jumps. Pj wasn’t really looking forward to this event as she had an inflammation on one of her knees that was annoying her squatting, she managed 140kg but couldn’t get 150kg, and Claire got the opening 120kg but then didn’t get 130kg. But bear in mind Claire had competed the day before in the England Strongwoman Championships Finals, so she is allowed to be a little tired!
In the U105kg class the yoke squat started at 180kg and went up in 20kg jumps. I’m pretty shit at squatting and wasn’t looking forward to this event at all! I’d done 200kg for reps on the yoke just for a feel in training, but then listening to all the guys going on about 300kg this and 320kg that, I just thought well fuck it just do what you can! 180kg was easy, 200kg felt off balance, 220kg just felt hard, and 240kg didn’t move at all! So last place (7th) in that event for me, next up I think was Mike Starkey with 240kg, and Steve Wilkenson won that event with an incredible 340kg lift, whilst being the lightest man in the class at 81.5kg! Reuben Dalton also did well in this event due to being approximately 3 foot tall (Ha! You dirty cheat Reuben!)
The second event was a max log lift. The logs in question were wooden ones, and I’ve never used anything other than a metal log before. They felt…. kind of fake. Bit like lifting very heavy polystyrene. Pj got 35kg and 40kg, tried 45kg but didn’t get it, but still got joint 3rd place. Claire got all the way to attempting 55kg, but couldn’t quite get it, still good for 2nd place.
My starting weight was 80kg, which is pretty close to my log best of 85kg, and 80kg and 85kg went up without much issue. 90kg started to give me dizzy spells but I still managed to get it on the second go, then 95kg was too much. So 90kg is a PB, right? Well I’m not counting it! I’ll keep my PBs to the horrid log in my gym so I don’t mess up my own training numbers! And while I was pleased with my lifts, it was still only good enough for last (7th place), but 5th and 6th got 95kg, and 2nd, 3rd and 4th all got 100kg, with lots of the guys being really disappointed with their lifts! So despite me being weak as piss I wasn’t that far behind. And with a couple of people dropping the logs NOT on to the tyres provided I think we were lucky to get to the end of the event! Those poor wooden logs (and Josh’s brain) have seen better days haha!
Third event was a bit more to my liking, a vehicle pull! The ladies had a 3.5 tonne van, Pj had a good run at this with a quick steady even run, but unfortunately she still only got 4th with the others putting in great pulls! Claire came second with a very fast 19 second pull, making event winner Lisa Yeats work hard for the win!
The boys were supposed to be pulling a 10 or 11 tonne style truck, but poor Josh got let down on the day by some unnamed lame person, so I suggested we link two vehicles together and pull that instead. They stuck a land rover in front of the van and we were ready to go! I was first up out of all the guys to try this so everyone was looking to me as a test to see what it looked like. Now I fucking LOVE harness and rope pulls, they suit my attributes of steady strength and cardio to the ground, so I dug in, got a nice start, got a good rhythm and chugged away. Not too difficult I thought, until the last 5 metres where an unseen incline I’m guessing ramped up the difficulty to ‘Oh fuck I’m really tired, I want to quit’ levels. Completed the course in 40 odd seconds, turns out that was good enough for 2nd place! A lot of the opens also struggled a lot with this so I felt good about my performance in this!
Event 4 was a car deadlift. I heard rumours about this set-up…. It sounded bad. The ladies were lifting a 150kg tyre on the frame instead of a car, but even so both Beccy and P-j couldn’t get a rep on this, but then Claire put in a gutsy effort to get 9 reps, forcing Lisa to put in a very hard 10 reps for the event win! Exciting stuff!
The guys had been talking about how they had found it very difficult to get a single rep in training, and these are bigger, stronger guys than me, so naturally I’m thinking ‘Fuck, that’s fucked’. But because it had been raining the frame got moved indoors and I think it got elevated slightly, as everybody started knocking out double figure scores! Steve Wilkenson AGAIN demonstrated demon ability by getting 30 reps in 60 seconds! FUCK! When it was my turn I opted to use straps, for the second time ever in my life (I’m not proud). I was desperately hoping for more than zero reps on this event, so getting ten reps was a boost! That was enough for joint 5th, but thinking about it afterwards I think I gave it way too much respect thinking about single heavy reps, rather than just fucking blasting it, as I have the cardio to do that. Lesson learnt!
The fifth event was an intriguing one…. the cross carry. Now this wasn’t a ‘normal’ stone cross or husafell stone but a nice custom adjustable long keg with a big pole inserted through it. The goal was simply to carry it for as many lengths of the gym as possible. A lot of people were not comfortable with it… But Claire and P-j are good at moving events! The girls had to carry 55kg, I believe Claire got second in this event with 50 metres, but P-j absolutely smashed the total arsehole out of it with a massive 100 metres, and still decided to put it back exactly where it started so as to not make it untidy! Haha, always thinking about tidying up, even whilst competing! Nobody in any class got anywhere near P-j’s score in this, should be a record attempt or something!
The boys in the U105kg had to lift 105kg, and I just used the rationale that I’ve wrestled heavier people so this should be alright… And it was alright. My biggest problem was a minor technical one that I didn’t grip it low enough at the start and it was hitting my legs early on, so it slowed me down. I scored 39 metres which was good for 4th place, Mike Starkey beat me by centimetres (Again!) and the winning distances were around 44 metres, so I could have done better but it’s all learning!
The final event was atlas stones. Once more it seemed that it would be light stones to silly high platforms, before you got to the fun heavy stuff. The girls had to do 30kg to 5 foot, 40kg to 4 and a half foot, then 50kg, 70kg, 80kg and finally 100kg to 4 foot. P-j came into this with the goal of getting the 70kg stone for the first time, and she succeeded! It was good enough for 3rd place I think, and Claire got all stones but the 100kg for second place, and Lisa won the event getting the 100kg stone up! Awesome work!
The lads stones were 70kg to 5 and a half foot, 80kg to 5 foot, 100kg to 4 and a half foot, then 120kg, 130kg and 140kg stones to 4 foot. I really wanted to have a dig at the heavier stones, but I knew I need to get the stupid shit out of the way first. I thought I’d be able to use the platform to help with the high stuff but that backfired straight away on the first stone with it slipping as soon as the stone made contact. Once I got the 70kg and 80kg up I felt confident the 100kg would be easy also… Dickhead. It wasn’t heavy but every time I blasted it up I was pushing forward just a tad too early and hitting the very lip of the platform to then have it come back down. So only 2 stones done got me last place, but only Ian Phillips got further than 3 stones! So even if I had got the 100kg, probably wouldn’t have got that horrid looking 120kg stone… It caused some tantrums haha!
So overall, P-j came 4th out of 5 ladies and Claire came 2nd, with Beccy coming 5th, Daisy coming 3rd and Lisa winning in dominating fashion. In the U105kg I actually came joint 5th with Willy Mcneil and Reuben Dalton all tying last place (go me!), Alistair Sale coming 4th, Mike Starkey coming 3rd, Steve Wilkenson coming an awesome 2nd and Ian Phillips winning.
Despite a number of factors not going Josh’s way (equipment, let downs, weather) it was a good competition, and nice to be surrounded by a good friendly crowd. I had a great time! Plus I came through this rather challenging competition feeling very fresh, which is good because next weekend (6th September 2015) I have a date with a long legged beauty… The 28km Nuts Challenge obstacle race in Surrey. I need to be ready to give my all to get to the end of this date with a smile on my face!
This has been quite a hectic month, with the Strongman Sanctuary Summer Competition on the 2nd August, the GBPF English Powerlifting Nationals on the 15th August, the Kents Hill Rumble Fitness Competition on the 16th August, the disastrous Iron Run Obstacle Race (I might write about that one day, once I’m over myself!) on the 22nd August, and then this Definition Strongman Competition on 30th August, with the Nuts Challenge Obstacle Race next. And apart from the blip at the Iron Run I feel great! Amazing what the body can be put through, and not just survive, but THRIVE.
If you would like to donate to our cause for Cancer Research UK you can do so by going to https://www.justgiving.com/FayeAndAliShaveTheirHeads/ Thank you!
Here is the video of the competition, enjoy:
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