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This past weekend, I traveled to Bowling Green, Ohio to compete in the USAWA Heavy Lift Nationals at the Black Swamp Old Time Strongman picnic hosted by Atomic Athletic. I had heard about this picnic in the past and was intrigued. The picnic did not disappoint. There were kettlebell challenges, farmers walk challenges, Atlatl demonstrations, hot water bottle breaking, chain breaking, frying pan rolling, record breaking, and our Heavy Lift Nationals.
It was great to have this to train for as it got my mind off the limitations I am having with my elbow (which I will be having surgery on shortly). Training had gone well, and I had some pretty big ideas going into this meet. The first lift was the neck lift. This went great. The lifts seemed to get easier as I went. I warmed up to 600. My first call was 700 pounds. Good lift. Then I went to 800. I got 3 white lights for that one as well. My third attempt was at 860 and was the best lift of the bunch. I had the World Record in the back of my mind, but after that lift, I knew I had to go for it. I called for 905 for the all time World Record. Good lift! It was a great start to a great day.
The second lift was the hand and thigh. This was the one that I was unsure of after training. I had spent the past couple weeks not hitting it so my hands would heal up and I could go after a big number at the meet. I opened at 1100 for an easy one. Then I went 1200 for my second attempt. This secured me the event win, but I needed all the pounds I could get, so I called 1300 for my third. I pulled it, but lost balance and fell backward-no lift. I had to settle for the 1200 for today. I was irritated with this one, but knew I had one more lift to get through, so I forced myself to move on.
The last lift of the day was the hip lift. At this point, I was in what I thought to be a pretty commanding lead. It hit 1600 for my opener, 1800 for my second and planned to go 2000 for my third and what I thought would be the win. But after another competitor hit 2000, I went to see what I would need for the win, according to formula. 2075 pounds! Up to now, the best I had ever done was 2005. Anyhow, the call of 2075 was made. If I got it, I win the national meet; if not, I had to settle for another second place finish, due to formula. Well, I went for it, and I got it.
All in all, it was a very good day. I set a world record, 2 PRs, and a earned a national championship title. The trip was fun, the picnic was cool, and I look forward to doing this meet again. Training for this event with these heavy amounts of weight is very taxing on an athlete. I would like to thank Metabolic Technologies once again for their support. Using HMB allowed me to hit these lifts hard preceding nationals, and still recover to make progress on my squatting, deadlifting, and strongman events. As for what the rest of the year has in store, I am not sure. Next up is to have surgery to fix this elbow that has been holding me back for almost 2 years now. Then I will recover, and move forward from there.