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Jared Enderton began Olympic lifting about 2 years ago and has already made a name for himself in the sport. He has been a 3x Weightlifting National Qualifier, runner up at the Olympic Weightlifting Collegiate Nationals, and qualified for the World University Games. This Iowa native currently resides in Las Vegas, where he has quite the training regimen. We welcome Jared Enderton to Team HMB and are excited to get to know more about this young accomplished athlete.
Q: I know that you were a great wrestler growing up, but what sparked your interest in going from that to strongman to now Olympic weightlifting?
JE: I would categorize myself as a "very hard working" wrestler that saw some success as a result of continued support from family and amazing coaching. Back in high school I was training with a great wrestler in Iowa named Justin Kerber (wrestled at Cornell). His entire bloodline has had some legendary wrestling in it. He told me about a weightlifting coach in Carroll, Iowa named Greg Kustra. So, we started traveling 3 hours round trip to see him every week. This was when I was introduced to it. As I did strongman longer and longer I realized that there was nothing better than when I trained weightlifting with Greg. I had to give it a shot. So, I dropped down from 300lbs to 200lbs, and the rest is history. I still have many goals in this sport, and consider myself a relative new guy. I have only been training seriously for 2 years, so, I know my best lifting is yet to come.
Q: What kind of training regimen do you have to be as successful as you have been in your Olympic weightlifting career?
JE: Very intense. The biggest training philosophy I go by is "quality over quantity." With Olympic Weightlifting being such a technical sport you must focus on the quality of every repetition. Once my technique starts to break down I know I either need to get stronger, or, move on from the exercise. Either way, I must wait to come back to it. I generally train 12x per week. It is usually 2x a day Monday-Friday and 1x on Saturday and Sunday. So, it is extremely time intensive and physically taxing.
The hardest part of the training is staying mentally engaged and mentally sharp. You must continually attack the weights regardless of how you feel (as long as you are making quality attempts). My training regimen changes all the time depending on how close a competition is/what my weaknesses are at the time. This isn't including the amount of time I spend a day foam rolling, stretching, light swimming, cold tub, hot tub, etc. This is all for recovery and I consider it equally as important as my lifting.
Q: What other types of lifts do you incorporate to better your snatch and clean & jerk?
JE: I prefer to stay pretty basic in terms of exercises. You have to pick what to spend your time on. I also do the Power Snatch, Power Clean, Back Squats, Front Squats, Romanian Deadlifts, and Glute Ham Raises. From time to time I will also do push presses, clean pulls, snatch pulls, and maybe some snatches off blocks. Those are more so done as fun on the weekends, though. I am a big believer in always focusing on your weaknesses. You are only as strong as your weakest link. Currently, I am working on my hamstring strength and overall hip mobility. So, I am including an extra stretching session a day, plus, doing direct hamstring work 2-3x per week.
Q: Do you have a certain nutrition program you follow to stay in 94kg division?
JE: Just to give you a little background on my weight fluctuation, I wrestled at 189lbs when I was 18. I then gained 111lbs in a year and a half to train for strongman, so, by 20 years old I was 300lbs. By the time I was 22 I had dropped 100lbs and was back down to 200lbs to do weightlifting. Once I set my mind on something I am going to accomplish it at all costs, it is just the way my mind works. My nutrition plan has to be very strict to make sure I don't gain a lot of weight. My body was so heavy for so long it continually wants to eat a LOT more than what I currently eat.
I am a huge believer in carbohydrate cycling. Since weightlifting is so anaerobic I don't need a ton of carbohydrates. I have found (through when I was heavy) that my body responds very strongly to carbohydrates. I gain a LOT of weight and blow up if I eat too many. So, Monday-Sunday my carb cycling rotation looks like this: low carb, low, medium, low, medium, low, low. I end the week on low/low carb days because I only train 1x on Saturdays and Sundays. It has made the biggest positive impact on my body composition as well as performance. It is all about placing the carbohydrates around my workouts as well. I went to school for Exercise Science; so I have always been very interested in nutrition plans as they relate to performance for different sports.
Q: Who has been your inspiration or helped you along the way?
JE: There have been a number of people who have helped me along the way. I'll limit it to 6 haha! John Broz, Steve Gough, Mike Karchut, Greg Kustra, Jianping Ma, and Vince Decker. There are many others, but, those are the ones who have contributed the most to my weightlifting development. Nobody has helped me from a technical standpoint like John Broz. I had struggled for almost a full year before I came to him to train, and, he completely re-did my technique. I owe him everything in terms of getting me back on the right track and finally teaching me how to lift right. In terms of motivation and staying hungry I would say Steve Gough has been the most inspirational guy to me in weightlifting. His son holds the American Records in my weight class and is arguably the most well respected weightlifting coach in the United States. From the first time I talked to him on the phone I have looked up to him and never want to let him down.
In terms of my inspiration to succeed it started out when I was young with Mike Alesch. He was my biggest role model and I tried to model everything I did athletically after him. His brother Cody and wife Teresa have also impacted my life more than I probably even know. The mental toughness they all display is something I try to emulate daily. I also really think of my family every day. My parents, my brother Jake, and friend Vince have been the best support system I could ask for. I would love to be able to help them out, which I hope to do after I make some World Championship and Olympic Teams. That is my main motivation and I let it drive me every single day.
Q: Between the snatch and the clean & jerk, do you have a favorite lift? Or do you enjoy both equally?
JE: I enjoy the clean and jerk more actually. I think about 90% of lifters prefer the snatch, but, I like the clean & jerk because it is at the end of the meet when you are already very fatigued. It is just a lot of brute strength and heart. I have struggled the most with my clean, so, I have practiced it so much I have started to love it. It now is starting to become a strength for me. The snatch is definitely way less painful, but not as rewarding.
Q: What do you think you can improve on in your lifts and what numbers do you foresee to hit in the future?
JE: I have a ton of improvements I want and need to make. I really want to set American Records (and beyond) within the next year. As a 94kg lifter I would love to hit a 170kg snatch and a 210kg clean and jerk at next year’s World Championships.
Q: What would you say is your most memorable experience you’ve had while competing in this sport?
JE: My most memorable moment would probably also be my most frustrating moment. At this year's nationals I set a big PR snatch, and a big PR clean & jerk. However, the clean & jerk was overturned by the jury a few minutes later. So, I didn't end up posting a total. I had shown so much improvement, yet, it didn't show up in the books. I had a 3rd attempt to make the same lift, but, couldn't pull through. It was a very humbling experience, and I hope to leave nothing to chance the next time I step on the platform. It is my most memorable because it has driven me to train harder than I ever could have imagined.
Q: What do you foresee in the future in Olympic weightlifting for you? Do you think that there’s longevity in the sport for you?
JE: I want to win the Pan American Games multiple times, medal at the World Championships multiple times, and medal at both of the Olympic Games (2016 & 2020). It has been a long time since USA Weightlifting has had a lot of success on the international scene, but, I believe I can change that. I am out to prove that it can be done and want to go about it the right way. I think if I continue to train smart that there definitely is longevity in the sport for me. I could easily see myself training through the 2020 Olympics. I am tired of hearing everyone say Americans can't place on the international level. Why not? If not me, who? If not now, when? These are questions that helped me succeed in wrestling, and I am applying the same mindset to my weightlifting career.
Q: What are your ultimate goals and how do you think HMB will help you achieve them?
JE: My ultimate goals are to medal at both of the 2016 & 2020 Olympic Games. I would really love to show that I can compete at the world level. Of course I want to win multiple Pan American Championships and place at World Championships as well. HMB has already helped me tremendously in the 2 months I have been taking it. I set all time records in the power snatch, snatch, front squat, and back squat. I couldn't ask for anything better than that. I am really starting to feel the recovery benefits from it and it has allowed me to take my training to the next level. I have added 2 more sessions a week to my training and have never been in this good of shape. I am a big believer in that "he who sacrifices the most will succeed the most." HMB isn't something I take so I can just take the easy way out. I take HMB so I can train even more intensely, and still recover from it. It allows me to train with a ferociousness that I haven't had since I did wrestling in high school. It has made me feel completely free to do whatever I want in training. To have the support from a company like Metabolic Technologies and a product like HMB is something I am extremely grateful for. With these lofty aspirations I am looking for every competitive edge I can possibly get, and I feel very blessed to have a product like HMB behind me. I am going to continue to train as hard as I can and representing Team HMB to the best of my ability!
Thanks for your time today Jared, we are truly happy to have you as a part of Team HMB and look forward to seeing what the future holds for you!