I get a little reflective after a memorable competition like Miami. I re-evaluate why I do this sport, and why I will continue to do this type of training even when there are no competitions on the Horizon.
Anyone that embarks on training for KB Sport, or any sport for that matter should ask themselves some very fundamental questions.
Why this sport? How much am I will to sacrifice to get good? Am I willing to step onto the platform knowing that I won't win?
I've been competing in KB Sport in some capacity since January of 2004. I've got some name recognition thanks to this sport. I've won some competitions and I've earned a MS Rank. That stuff is all great...However, it pales in comparison to the real benefits of this training and the competitions.
Why is this sport right for me? Training for the sport has kept me focused. It has driven me to be a better athlete. I now move better. I eat better. I've lost 35lbs since 2006 and kept it off and while increasing my LBM.
My well being has been enhanced. I've compared this training to meditation. It teaches you to move and to breath. Yes, you have to do those things at the optimal level to be elite, but the process of learning those things are where the real benefits exist.
How hard have I had to work to get there? Well, I've been training off and on for the sport since Jan 2004. This past year, I've become much more dedicated. While other things are more fun or exciting in terms of training, I decided to give this a serious shot which meant that most of my workouts have been snatches, jerks and swings. The monotony and simplicity would drive many people crazy, but I have embraced it.
I wanted to be good at the exercises. It wasn't just the numbers or the rank. I wanted to be able to demonstrate the movements with fluidity so that when someone watches me they will aspire to move that way. Because I feel so strongly about the benefits of the training, I wanted to understand the movements. You can learn a lot by doing..if you pay attention. Anyone that thinks that these are just long boring sets, hasn't gotten it. You have to be mindful and focused. This is how you learn to be efficient; this is how you learn to move. It is time under the bells and if you are just going through the motions, you're missing out.
Why am I outlining these benefits? Because the competitive aspects of the sport don't always bring out the best in us. The desire for winning or rank is not a bad thing as long as it doesn't blind you to the fact that this is hard work and getting good takes a while for most of us save the few with genetic gifts.. That desire is fine as long as it doesn't keep you from competing just because you may not win or get a rank. Part of a competition is getting on the platform, giving it your best shot, and learning from the experience. If you only compete when you know you will win or where you know you can achieve a rank, YOU WILL NEVER GET BETTER . You will never realize the non-rank or non-winning benefits of this training. Quite frankly, you won't keep doing it and you'll miss out on the wellness-health benefits as well.
I spent 1500 or more last year to travel to Latvia knowing that I would not win. Why? Because I knew that the experience would make me stronger. I knew that going over there and seeing those Ukranian Freaks (I mean that in the nicest way) would be a good motivator. I knew that I would have a great time and I knew the experience would be one that I would cherish for the rest of my life.
Getting a high rank and winning a competition does require dedicated practice. There are no short cuts or easy answers. You can shop around for an easier road to obtain a Medal or a ranking, but in the end you will be selling yourself short.
You know when you've really earned it and you have respect for everyone who steps onto the platform whether they do 10 reps or 100.
I am so very proud of everyone who competed in Miami as they reflect the very reason I have stuck with this sport for nearly 4 years. The friendships formed and maintained through these competitions are probably one of the biggest benefits. We have such a great group of people. The atmosphere was so positive and everyone is looking towards the next competition.