Unicorn Strength Gym based in Castle Douglas sent two of their female athletes off to a national functional fitness competition down in England at the weekend. This was the first time both of the girls had competed as individual athletes and not as part of a team.
The competition took place in Manchester at the Sports City Stadium and saw over 480 athletes competing across different categories.
In the months leading up to the event, Beth McKee and Kirsty McColm took on multiple qualifiers to ensure their place at the competition.
Kirsty McColm competed on Saturday and Beth McKee on Sunday. They each took on 6 different intense fitness events across 8 hours, battling against approximately 60 other girls in their category. The events saw the ladies running with weighted vests, rowing, Olympic weightlifting and performing an array of gymnastic skills.
Kirsty had an outstanding performance, exceeding every expectation she had. Her highest finish was taking 4th place in event 2, which was a 1000m row. After 5 events Kirsty made it into the top 15 and Saturday’s Final. After an intense workout Kirsty took 15th place overall for the day – an incredible achievement.
Beth McKee then took to the competition floor on Sunday. She placed top 10 in all six events and had been fighting between 1st and 2nd place all day – heading into the final event she was sitting 2nd place. After a tough battle in the final between the top three ladies, Beth took 2nd place overall, with the slightest of points separating her and 1st place.
Coach Anne Halliday said, ‘It was an incredible weekend, full of excitement and adrenaline. Both girls were absolutely phenomenal and I cannot explain just how proud I am of them. I am deeply honoured to be part of their journeys with fitness and competing and am humbled to witness what they are capable of. It was a truly memorable weekend!’.
Kirsty McColm said ‘The Rainhill Trials was such a positive experience from start to finish. Everyone was so welcoming and supportive of each other, which was unexpected for a competition, but it was really encouraging especially as a first time individual athlete! It was a great weekend of both supporting others and competing, and difficult to choose which was actually more enjoyable! However, making the final of my division was the highlight for me- even if it was a surprise! ‘
Beth McKee said, ‘ I had no expectations going into the day, besides giving every event my absolute maximum effort, and it paid off. Even in the events that were on my weak side, I surpassed how well I thought I was going to do. I would have been happy to make it to the final, let alone beat 50 girls in my category. I cannot thank my coach Anne enough, she has done everything in her power to support me in my huge goals as an athlete and makes sure I am getting the best training possible – It really shows that if you put in the effort you get the results and this is just the start for me . ’
Unicorn Strength Gym is based beside Stewartry Rugby Club and is a functional fitness / strength and conditioning gym. They have coached classes for all ages and abilities – everyone is welcome, from complete beginners to those who wish to compete.
First class is free!