The Power of Community: Ladies Lift Here May Queen 2016

As always, competing in the Ladies Lift Here Queen series is such a pleasure. The event was excellent, as usual, and I could not have asked for a better show to kick of my competitive season. First things first, let’s do a brief recap of the events. I ended up taking 7th out 9 and having a not so great show performance wise, but this show was so much more than my performance.

[photo credit: screengrab from video by Tina Judge]

[photo credit: screengrab from video by Tina Judge]

Max Axle Deadlift: I went 220/240/260 on this and smoked all of them. About two weeks prior to this show, I re-aggravated a bad SI joint injury and was basically left lying on the floor of my gym, unsure if I was even going to be able to deadlift anything on competition day. I played it safe and sort of wish I had gone for 280# but it felt really good to come out of the gate with a good event.

 

Truck Pull: Thiiiiis was bad. It was HEAVY and my technique was basically non-existent. I was just glad this was over with and I spent a solid 5 minutes laying in the parking lot trying not to throw up.

Log clean and press for reps, 110#: Doing this event after truck pull was a special kind of suck. I was happy with getting 3 reps but knew I had at least 2-3 more left in me but just couldn’t pull it together under fatigue. Last year, at this same show, I pressed 110# once for a massive PR. It felt great to see the result of lots (and lots and lots and lots) of pressing work starting to pay off.

Yoke: My heartbreak event for the day. The weight, 375#, is something that is not terribly heavy for me but I rushed my set up and had to drop and repick the yoke which cost me some precious time. Major lesson: take your damn time.

Stone flight: This event was everything. I was one of only two lightweight women to finish it and walked away with a 2nd place event finish on this and FINALLY loaded a 200# stone in a competition! This felt really, really good and I was glad to end on such a positive note.

While my performance was sort of meh, the experience of this show was pretty special. I got to compete alongside a former teammate and friend whose journey into strongman has been something that I have had the immense pleasure of watching (Go Leah!). I got to compete with one of my best friends and swolemate who ended up taking SECOND PLACE in middleweight novice at her second show, ever. I got to compete with several women from my gym who were all competing in strongman for the first time. I got to see several strong friends, old and new, and cheer for them and give them hugs and candy. It was, for lack of a better term, transcendental.

 

As I was hugging my friend who took second (and basically sobbing because I was so damn proud and excited), the power of the strongman community hit me. It ran me over like that damn semi truck that we pulled.  


The experience of being in a packed room full of people who are trying to lift each other (and everything else in the room) up is absolutely awe inspiring. Watching people who didn’t know they could be strong, BE STRONG was sort of indescribable. That feeling is what the strongman community is all about. Really, that is what the sport is all about: learning how to be strong, remembering that you can do hard things, and raising others up through the collective strength of the community.