KettleBell Camaraderie

I picked up a sport in the past year, what first was a strength training exercise used during PT sessions at BDHQ has turned into a full time obsession – Kettlebell sport. Kettlebells are cast iron weights (resembling a cannon ball) with a handle. Kettlebells were created by the Russians in the 1700s to weigh crops, the exercises and movements (such as the snatch and jerk) mimic activities like shovelling or farm work. No wonder I love it. I’m putting myself out there and committing to training for the next competition.

I do enjoy being part of a team. A few weeks ago the West Coast Kettlebell Club was competing at the Victoria Kettlebell Classic Competition, I was going to do the Chair Benchpress Relay, a fun team event that I was feeling capable of attacking. The meet was on a Saturday and I had meetings and tours (Saturday is a busy day in Real Estate!). There was a running relay on the Sunday after the competition, I had mistaken the event time, thinking Chair relay was on the Sunday….after my work was done I headed to the competition in my work outfit, prepared to cheer on my team for the last part of the day. Waltzing into the event in my work attire, no gym outfit, I realized the Chair Relay was on in 15 minutes.

This is not a story about how I clicked my heels, disappeared into the bathroom and competed like some Viking version of Clark Kent. This is a story about how my team mates scrambled to find me everything I needed to compete in under 5 minutes. Shoes, socks, sports bra, shorts, team Tshirt, wrist guards, water bottles, pep talk. I was so nervous that my head was shaking a little bit (it does that) and I rolled around in the chalk trough like it was the last time I’d have a chance to dust bathe – vigorously rubbing in the chalk, the fear setting in. The ladies on the team told me I was up first, and I needed them to tell me what to do. I needed my team mate to grab my shoulders, look at me head on, and say, “Christina. You’re going to sit down on that chair. Then you’re going to lift those above your head. Over and over.” I appreciated that directness.

I came into that Competition unprepared, very nearly letting the team down with my absence, and they turned it around by finding all the tools I needed to compete, including that simple, direct pep talk. I was touched by the team coming together like that. I’ve been operating like a Han Solo – lone contractor – for so long now that I forgot how good it can feel to be part of a team, it’s been sitting with me. Watching the team help each other, cheer, empower, endure together. It’s a feeling I’ve long missed, I just didn’t know it. I was the weak link, and their sportsmanship made my tiny Grinch heart grow another size.

Yesterday was my first day training and 3rd work out post-trip and after 3 weeks of stuffing my face with schnitzel, I think I’ll be back to where I was in around 2 weeks, I worked it let me tell you. Dripping in sweat I drove home, picked up my dog and headed to Dallas Road. I walked Sadie down to the ocean, took off my shoes and waded into the cold salty Pacific Ocean. My legs were screaming from weighted squats, I took my shirt off, threw it onto the shore and went for a dip. It was amazing.

The team killed it by the way. Our fearless coach James Beckerley led the 14 competing lifters to various levels of AWESOMENESS and victory. Curious? Come join us for a workout!

More info here: http://bdhq.ca/index.php/programs/west-coast-kettlebell-club/wckc-team

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