Cian Foley – World Kettlebell Champion :-)

cian-1Yes you read that right! I have to keep saying it out loud because it’s still surreal. I’m a World Kettlebell Champion fulfilling a dream of mine for a number of years.  After winning the Europeans in my category (adult men’s long cycle, 78-85kg bodyweight with 2x24kg bells) this year, I was quietly confident going into the worlds knowing that if I trained hard, cleaned up my diet and got a bit more clever about what I was doing with my technique, I could increase my repetitions and be in with a chance of winning.  My coach Rosaleen Flynn (Rosie is coach at Waterford Kettlebell Club based at Peak Fitness in Cleaboy business park in Waterford) put together a periodisation plan for me and knew when to push and when to lay off to get me as prepared as possible for D-Day.

Photos by Gerry Donnelly © 2015 AIKLF

Between the 25th and 29th of November, the IUKL World Kettlebell championships were held in Ireland in DCU’s sports complex in Dublin and run by the AIKLF. Kettlebell Sport (or Girevoy Sport), is a Russian sport where athletes compete with one or two kettlebells (16, 24 or 32kg) for 10 minutes with the aim of getting as many repetitions (reps) as possible. 565 athletes attended the event from 36 countries, which means it was the biggest kettlebell event in the world to date.

On the day, I managed 87 reps with Per Olhans, the Swedish champion, coming in second with 85 reps, and Karsten Bollert from Germany in third with 82 reps.  There were 14 athletes in total who turned up for the event from countries across the world including Russia, USA, Australia, Serbia and England, see table below for full results:

Men’s <85K Amateur LC – World Kettlebell Championships Resultsresults

Here’s my 10 min set from the worlds championships…

I’m especially delighted to have won a gold medal in Ireland. That made it really special because my family and friends were there to give support. My wife Nic, the kids, my mother and father, my father in law, sister in law, sister, god son & niece and pal Burkie and his wife Juneanne, along with my fellow club members were all there. I really appreciated everyone being there and heard them during my set, you can hear them shouting in the video above. I had to give absolutely everything to get those last 2 reps to win and all the running up and down to Coumshingaun and jumping into the lake for months may have been the difference, thank God.

cian-2Photos by Gerry Donnelly © AIKLF 2015

In terms of big wins for me, I won a European medal in Bulgaria in July of this year and won the Pan American Open Championships the year before in Columbus Ohio at the Arnolds, but this is the biggest for me so far. It’s very satisfying to set a goal and then achieve it.

Big thanks to my wife Nicola and children for giving me the time to train and support needed to focus on the event.  Thanks to my training buddy Kieran and his wife Cathy for opening up their gaff for me to train during the winter months.  Finally, thanks to my coach Rosie from Waterford Kettlebell Club who put together an excellent training plan for me. It obviously worked!

Waterford Kettlebell Club is based in Peak Fitness in Cleaboy Business Park.  If anyone is interested in getting involved or finding out more about Kettlebell Sport in Waterford please contact Rosie or any of the lads in there and they’ll point you in the right direction.

Click here to listen to an interview I did with Open Tempo with Eoin Tubritt

It’s an amazing second chance for me to have gone from being an 18 stone unhealthy slob to <13 stone kettlebell lifting athlete over the past few years.  It was a slow progression but I’m delighted that I got on to that path and how far I’ve come. If you told me 5 years ago that I’d be a European and World Kettlebell lifting champion in 2015 I’d have laughed in your face so I guess what I’m saying is  that there is hope for everyone, if you have belief in yourself and are willing work hard.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Now back to the real world, website anyone LOL?

See previous post: ‘Santa is Real’ Music Video

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