I know I’ve mentioned the strongman community a few times now, but let me hone in on that aspect of the sport just for a second. It was the major reason I was attracted to the sport and why I felt comfortable going to my first class.
I got into this because I went and watched a friend compete in his first novice competition. Every lift that he did, the guys cheered for him, high-fived him, congratulated him. In fact, everyone did that for everyone. Everyone yelled and encouraged everyone else. Whether you knew them or not the whole room cheered for everyone. It was the most marvellous competition I had ever seen.
That is basically the essence of strongman. In class we often split into girls and boys. And all the girls cheer for each other, as do all of the boys. Everyone offers support and tips and assistance to everyone else as needed. My first class I had no idea what I was doing but all the other girls offered pieces of advice based on their experience to help me. B’s experience with the guys has been the same. He is very new to lifting as a whole as well as strongman, and the guys there help and give tips wherever they think they’re needed. My one experience where we had a bit of a blended group and got a couple of guys in my group I experienced the same thing from guys to girls as well.
Everyone there wants everyone else to succeed and reach their maximum potential. For me, there’s another girl that lifts quite similarly to me. She’s better than me in some things and I’m better than her in others. And that inspires the shit out of me. We train quite closely together during class and egg each other on to go faster, lift more, be better. We even started hanging out outside of class to lift together. Surely I should feel threatened by her, but I don’t. Because her success is my success now. If she lifts more than me that’s more push for me to go harder. If she (or anyone else for that matter!) beats me at the comp then I will be thrilled for her that she smashed it and gave it her all, and I’ll be thrilled that I did the same and I got beaten by a beast. Plus, #strongsisters4lyf!
Not to mention, I’ll also have new goals to get me to the next competition. I think that healthy competition aspect is really important to hold on to. It’s super easy to get caught up in how you should’ve done better, or to make excuses for why you didn’t keep up with everyone else. What’s more important is to build each other up and feed off of each other’s success. I might not win, but if my lifting buddy did, isn’t that the same thing? The world is a big place so we can all be winners in my opinion!
PS 30 days to go!