Monday, March 9, 2009

Highlight from the Arnold

Rich Edinger, me, Brad Madvig, Maura Shuttleworth, Jim Cahill

Lifting in the USAPL Raw Challenge was the reason I went to Columbus Ohio for the Arnold Sports Festival. A year ago I didn't even know what the Arnold Sports Festival was... when I was invited to lift, I didn't think I even wanted to go. Lucky for me, Brad Madvig and Maura clued me in. The Arnold is THE place to check out if you are a fan of strength training. There were a ton of celebrities from the world of strength. Best of all, my lifting partner Maura Shuttleworth qualified to go as well.

My first celebrity sighting was Lou Ferrigno. He was sitting in my airplane seat on the way to Columbus from Minneapolis; I had to ask him to move. He was a little bleary eyed having just connected flights to Columbus from California. I wanted a photo, but I was afraid the Hulk might appear. I met up with Lou again at the airport in Columbus on the way back to Minneapolis. We were on the same flight again; we exchanged a little small talk. I still wanted a photo for my collection, but Aaron wouldn't let me bug him for one. Probably the right thing to do, poor guy was hassled through the airport by loads of adoring fans. He looks great by the way.

My BFF Ellen Stein introduced me to Ed Coan, a man considered to be the best powerlifter who ever lived. He is a humble man of few words, very typical of powerlifters. He spoke a little after the powerlifting meet on Friday. He doesn't compete anymore, but is still lifting.

The Govenator, Arnold himself showed up and actually interrupted the big geared men lifting on Saturday to speak a little. He stayed for a while to watch the deadlifts. He also looked great. Ellen shamelessly trolled for a photo op, she never got a photo, but got a handshake instead. How cool is that?

We got a special treat after all the Raw powerlifting was over. Three members of the German Olympic weightlifting team showed up to give a demonstration. WOW! Amazing lifters! Two men and one woman were lifting weight that was close to their personal bests! I was feeling really tired and hungry after competing, then running numbers for both Mad and Cahill... but it was worth hanging in there to watch some truly awesome athletes lift.

Hometown boy Brad Gillingham won the Deadlift challenge on Saturday. Also competing in the Deadlift only event were Jon Krogman and Nick Tylutki from Brad Gillingham's Jackals Gym in Minnesota. We have a strong state! Two other Gillinghams were at the Arnold as well. Maura and I took the opportunity to bug them all for a photo. It's not like we couldn't get a picture back home in Minnesota. We see Brad regularly... but we have never seen all 3 Gillies (Wade, Carl and Brad) together. Lucky us!

There was traditional kettlebell Girevoy Sport going on. Aaron knows Matt from blogosphere, and cheered for him as he competed. I got to meet John Wild Buckley in person. I also met Catherine Imes, first woman to be awarded Master of Sport, a big deal in the world of kettlebell training. I also met Steve Cotter after watching him compete in the 10-minute kettlebell jerk competition. He was a very nice man, just as I expected.

Aaron, Maura and I bummed around on Sunday. We took in the Bench Press Bash, but left early because it was so boring. The big guys kept missing their lifts due to missing the grove of the bench shirt. I do not understand geared bench-pressing, so I lack interest.

I saw little tiny kids doing gymnastics. We watch some teen-agers compete in Olympic weightlifting. I ate enough protein treats in the expo hall to give me a stomachache from hell. Maura and I shopped for out-fits. I also got to meet Tazzie Colomb; body builder and powerlifter. Watch out ladies, if you lift heavy, you might bulk up!


Anna White said...

It looks like you guys had tons of fun! :) Great lifting as well, congrats on your new meet PRs!

fawn said...

Thanks Anna! Let's get you qualified for next year! We had a ton of fun... you should join us next year!

Jennifer said...

I'm so glad things were so great! Congratulations on such an honor and such a performance.
And.. is that last pic a chic?

fawn said...

Thanks! We had a great time! Yep, that is a chic.

Mike T Nelson said...

Excellent work on your lifts Fawn!! Whooo ha!!!
Rock on
Mike N

Katie, KettlebellKate said...

You mean that WAS a chic..