Brought to you by Ursus Fitness (March 12-13)
Two competitions are available for men and women to enter mid-March. BearCamp uses back-to-back Strongman equipment such as log bars, kegs, and tyres. Performance will be judged on timing/reps; and Strongman/woman which will use iconic Strongman equipment with emphasis on maximum weights. We speak to the co-founder of Ursus Fitness, Santina Philips to find out more about what it takes to be a Strongwoman!
You recently achieved a huge feat by being able to flip a 300kg tyre! Tell us more, how long did it take you to achieve this and how does it feel?
I’ve been practising Strongman for around a year and a half now it was a real struggle the first time I tried to flip the 120kg! Since then I’ve always been eyeing up the next sized tyre wanting to accomplish a new PR (Personal Record). It finally got to the stage where I was ready to try the 300kg tyre, it took a week of attempts but I managed it in the end and when I got it over it felt great!
How did you become involved in URSUS Fitness? What is the ethos behind it?
I met my business partner Gary training in the Lamma jungle when I came across new equipment and movements I had never seen before. I became addicted to the Strongman style of training especially as I saw how quickly and positively it changed my body. I was stronger, faster and leaner than ever before and the training was so fun. There’s nothing better than the real life events of dragging, lifting, carrying and pushing Strongman challenges you with to build real functional strength.
“Ursus” means bear in Latin, which reflects our primal approach to fitness. But don’t be intimidated – it’s just fun and games really!
Tell us about the early bear camp days. How did you manage to move all that apparatus on a daily basis? Surely it must have been a workout in itself!
We held Bear Camp in both Lamma and Cyberport and it had a great primal and raw feel to it out in the jungle. If it weren’t for the 5 tonne truck of equipment my business partner and I had to drive around Hong Kong and then single-handedly drag, roll and push into various locations I would’ve done it forever! Like you said, it was a great workout, just with 400kg tyres it wasn’t sustainable long term.
Can you tell us a bit more about the different types of equipment and its purpose? I understand you actually make the atlas stones yourselves!
The Strongman specific equipment we have includes beer kegs, tractor tyres that aren’t only used for flipping, sledgehammers, a Conan’s wheel (which is multifunctional also acting as a Viking’s Press and Car Lift), log bars, and sleds accompanied with harnesses strong enough to pull a jumbo jet! Gary and I take a real “hands-on” approach, and I mean that literally. We do make all the atlas stones ourselves and we don’t even own a cement mixer!
What is the most gruelling workout you’d like to recommend to our members?
Personally I think Bear Camp is still the toughest as it challenges both your strength and endurance.
How should our members mentally and/or physically prepare before class?
Always make sure to get warmed up as if it involves heavy lifting, it’s important to never compromise form just to lift more. Also don’t be intimidated by the different equipment, and be prepared to get a sweat on and have fun! All our movements are scalable so that everyone can join in!
Lastly, any recovery tips?
Sleep and nutrition are key. Get enough sleep and make sure you eat well – lots of vegetables, good quality meat and healthy sources of carbs. Supplements such as multivitamins, protein powder, glutamine, BCAA’s and Omega 3s are also important and key to helping recovery. I also use my HRV (heart rate variability) readings to help me plan my rest days and train smarter. This is used as a tool to indicate stress levels to be used daily to decipher how ready you are to train. It’s common for people to overtrain nowadays so it’s important to implement rest days into your training programs.
Registration is now open for the World’s 1st BearCamp and Strongman/Strongwoman Championships this coming March. If you think you have what it takes? Then sign up now (www.ursusfitness.com)! Good luck!