Here are one of those posts where there’s so much to talk about, I have no idea how to get it all in! It starts of course with the winner of the men’s division, Mr. Steve Howell! It wasn’t at all a surprise, especially for me, who’s had the pleasure of being his training partner for the last couple of months. He treats every single session as if there was something on the line, leaving no doubt in my mind the job was going to get done this past weekend. The unknown was not the workouts, it was the level of competition. And, in the world of CrossFit, has been growing infinitely every year. There was a little drama, Steve was down a 2 points with 2 workouts to go, but in what is now known as “The Howler’s” trademark, the last day is where he likes to shine. And that’s exactly what happened. While the beasts were showing signs of humanity, our firebreather was just warming up. It was close, and was a good fight, but it was scripted perfectly. It was been quite the journey, a victory that was long overdue! Of course for Steve, this is just the beginning, and by no means the end, but please take your time to soak this one up. You were the crowd favourite, and it was only fitting that you were crowned the champ.
Speaking of crowd favourite, the drama of the weekend definitely seemed to be centred around Team Whistler. But before the team, it definitely started with our fans: Scott, Amanda, Tyler, Michelle and Phil were there to support the troops, and they brought the heat. And maybe, when it came to watch the team events, there weren’t as many heats, so it was easier to follow along. Or perhaps it was the head to head elimination of competing against another team that had something to do with it. Either way, the entire room was electrified, and cheered on every rep, as our little gym, represented by Don, Sophie, Myself, and Mama Bear, (Who you might know as Jo) made it all the way to the semi finals. It took winning an event by .71 seconds to make past the round robin, and into quarter finals. We had a comeback victory in our head to head elimination against our good friend Liam and the team from Crossfit Westside. With their men finishing ahead of Don and myself, and their girls in the lead heading into the last round rope pulls and thrusters. But, our ladies seem to hit a new gear with Mama Bear and Sophie picking up speed as the westside ladies were losing their grip strength. It was a close finish, and it got the everyone in a frenzy, and was just the beginning of how the crowd came behind the team.
In the next workout we faced Taranasaurus, let’s just call them team Taranis. And yes, they were a strong team, the home team, with their strength being….Strength. And the event, well, a barbell complex, which was the event that was scripted perfectly for that team. And, well….not exactly meant for us. In short, both Sophie and Mama Bear were waiting patiently for Don and I finish our part of the workout, as the way workout was setup, it was only until the men finished all their work could the ladies start theirs. By the time they started the complex, Team Taranis’ girls were almost half way done theirs. The snatch weight was no given for our ladies, it would have been a PR lift, and worthy of the leaderboard. And these ladies were asked to snatch it 20 times. With Taranis finished, and moving on to the finals, the crowd pumped up the ladies and lead them to finish the workout. It was electric! They cheered for every rep, and got the most out of the team on that workout. That wasn’t the last of our story, as the last workout, with 3rd place on the line, was waiting around the corner. This time, the impossible task called for squatting your partner on your back. Yes, Sophie had to pick up Jo, I mean Mama Bear, and squat her five times, and carry her across the gym. By this time, the team we were head to head with, CrossFit Vancouver, had finished their workout. It was now a replay of the semi finals. The crowd was cheering sophie through every rep, or shall I say every attempt. It was an amazing feeling to have the entire crowd on your side, it never felt like the team lost anything. The energy was inspiring, it was motivating, and it made me feel, and I am sure I can speak for the rest of team, unbelievably happy for giving it everything we had.
But we weren’t the only ones, and this wasn’t all about Steve’s Win. We had Uncle Rob, Kara, Tab, and Leddy all had their time in the spotlight too. They each had a story to tell. And contrary to the modesty behind just “surviving”, as I’ve heard Tab and Leddy say, they did more than a few things to turn heads.
Uncle Rob had 2 PR’s in the first workout. His Power Snatch and Squat Snatch. Only fitting he had that carved in his mohawk. Yes, that’s no typo. Not a bad way to start a competition. It wasn’t as if he squeaked out an couple of pounds, more like 20! In our kilo world, that’d be 86kg jump from 77.5kg. Beyond Rob’s personal achievement, he also finished the last WOD, which just about crippled the entire field. In the early heats, he was one of few to finish, showing that he could hang with the beasts of the CrossFit world.
Saving the best for last, our lovely ladies of CrossFit. Where adjectives like beasts aren’t what come to mind in describing these girls. Although a compliment in the CrossFit world, I would prefer to call them “THE” ladies of CrossFit. I would have to say the most impressive accomplishment with THE ladies would be dealing with the weights they were asked to get overhead. All of them were either working at weights that were right at around their max, or were their max. As a coach, and a CrossFitter, working around your max is less than ideal, and nearly impossible when fatigued. But they all came through with flying colours. Specifically we’re talking about the snatch, a ridiculously complex movement. But neither of them were at all phased, they all showed poised, confidence in their skills, and let it all hang out. I wish I could say that I helped coach them through all of their workouts. But most of the time I was on my own in recovery mode. A mirror is all they need to see who’s responsible for their success. I’m proud of all of you, you go girls!
All in all, it was an amazing weekend. Taranis for putting on an unbelievable event. The volunteers and judges for donating their time. The athletes for putting it all on the line. The fans for cheering their lungs out.
For me, these events are more than a competition. It’s a chance to see some great people. I’d love to name you all. The crew at Fitness Town, our neighbours to the south in squamish, and even further south to our vancouver friends.
Thanks for a great weekend, and can’t wait to do it again soon!