Articles from November 2014



The Race

By Eric Todd

I remember the race very clearly. I was in the 8th grade and had been lifting weights for a spell, when a couple of my school chums became interested in the iron as well. Both were rather athletic. One was the biggest guy in our grade, the star tackle on our junior high football team. The other was smaller than I, but very little body fat, and very strong for his size. Anyhow, the bigger of the two went with his grandparents to Sam’s Club where they had a membership and purchased a weight bench and a 300 pound iron weight set. As they both lived in town, they were able to spend time working out together on this new toy.

At this time, it was known that I was the strongest kid in class. I could do more pull-ups, sit-ups, and pull-ups than anyone else in gym class. I was our starting fullback and linebacker, and was winning most of my wrestling matches this year. And it was this particular year that we got a new head football coach, also our PE teacher, who was invested in weight training. So I was able to demonstrate my physical superiority in gym class every couple weeks when he had us train on the universal in the boy’s locker room. It was about half way through the school year when “the race” began. Our coach decided it was time to bring in a real bench and show us proper technique during PE. After a couple times of practice, he had everyone get a one rep max. It was a fine day for me. Out of all the 8th graders in Cameron, I had the top mark of 200 pounds. However, our star tackle was close behind at 185. And when we figured the best pound for pound, the other guy was right behind me as well.

Well, the race was on. They kept training on their super slick Wal-Mart Iron, and I kept lifting on my second hand plastic clad sand weights on the milking floor. Every time one of us hit a new benchmark, the other’s phone would ring. I maintained my lead for a while. But one day the phone rang. I couldn’t believe my ears. The bigger guy hit a 215, and the smaller fellow surpassed me on pound per pound percentage. I tried to be a good sport, congratulating them on a job well done, but when I hung up the phone, I felt a rage in my heart. I had to get back to the top. I did the only thing I could think of. I went out to the milk barn. I upped my training intensity. My focus was rock solid. After I won the small fry state championship in wrestling that year, I was able to spend more time in the milk barn. Later that spring, after track practice, we were at the field house and I decided to see what I had (I could always do more on an iron set than I could with sand for whatever reason). I hit a solid 225#, putting me back ahead either way you looked at it. And there I stayed.

One day after school, I went over to the house where they trained with both fellows. They wanted to show me a neat trick. It was one they had used to take me down earlier that year. They were putting a full roll of paper towels on their chest to bounce the weight off of when they were bench pressing. While this method was a fine training tool (known as towel bench) in the old “Bigger, Faster, Stronger” program, it was a partial movement that they had beaten me with!

However, any way you look at it, it was by being brought down that motivated me to dig in, and fight to be the best. If I had not received that call, I might have been content just resting at the top of the hill. Funny thing about that weight set, too. They gave up training weights after a couple years, and sold the set to another friend of mine. He gave it up after another year or two. I think it was about my freshman year in college, that I inherited that old Sam’s Club iron weight set. It was the first real iron I owned, and it is still part of my collection.

Clarks RD

by Al Myers

MEET RESULTS

CLARK’S RECORD DAY

Bill just sent me the results from his meet last weekend.  It looks like it was a busy affair!  I’ll start with the bad news before the good.  Bill had sanctioned the Backbreaker along with a record day on this day, but he had no entries in the Backbreaker.  The Backbreaker is a traditional meet in Clark’s Gym that consists of the Hip Lift, Hand and Thigh Lift, Harness Lift, Neck Lift, and the Back Lift.  Truly a grueling ordeal. I’ve done it before and can attest to the extreme soreness afterwards.  Can’t really blame the guys for passing on it!

But the GOOD NEWS is that all round lifting is still alive and flourishing in Clark’s Gym.  Six lifters took part in the record day event.  The day was highlighted by the appearance of Steve Schmidt as he attacked another Guinness World Record.  Steve was successful in adding his name to the Guinness Record Book once again.  Steve, at age 59 and 215 pounds BWT, pulled five nails from wood with his teeth in 7.44 seconds! He then set a second record for most nails pulled from wood in one minute – with an astonishing count of 27!  I will try hard to get a follow-up story on this.

Veteran gym member Joe Garcia set the pace for adding more records to the USAWA record list.  It practically fills up a full page.  I guess now since Joe has passed on keeping the record list up to date to me – he doesn’t mind making a lot of work for me!  I don’t remember him EVER doing that many record attempts in a day when he was keeping up the list!  Great job Joe – and I really don’t mind adding your name many more times! David Emslie continues to be a presence at Clark’s meets, and added many records himself. He set records in ALL combinations with the vertical bars which is quite the accomplishment. Bill Clark, at age 82, still has record setting performances in him.  I was really impressed to see the list of new records he set.  He set a new USAWA record in the Hip Lift with a fine lift of 907 pounds, but in his letter he told me that he hopes to get another 1000# Hip Lift before long.  I should remind everyone that this is done with a plethora of artificial joints, too many to count on your fingers using both hands.

MEET RESULTS:

Clark’s Record Day
November 8th, 2014
Clark’s Gym
Columbia, Missouri

Meet Director: Bill Clark

Officials  (1 Official System Used): Bill Clark, Joe Garcia

Results (PDF): ClarksRD-page1 ClarksRD-page2

The Smartest Man in the World!

by Thom Van Vleck

Recently I was talking to someone about lifting and why it’s a great idea to lift weights.  They seemed to struggle with the idea of lifting unless they were going to be the best at it.   Otherwise, why not find something else to do!  I enjoy weightlifting but in case you didn’t notice….I’ve yet to be the strongest man in the world.  I’ve also noticed that many people won’t enter an athletic meet unless they have a chance to win.  I think there’s a problem with that attitude.

Here’s my thought.  Nobody would say, “Well, if I can’t be the smartest in the world (or even that given day) then why bother ever learning anything….I’ll just stay stupid”.  The first thing you need to do when you start a lifting program is to do it for yourself.  Make yourself stronger.  Irregardless of who else is stronger.  Sometimes surprising things can happen.

I worked for 2 years and finally one day I was ready to attempt a 225lb squat.  TWO YEARS of HARD WORK led up to this moment.  I was 16 years old and weighed about 175lbs.  Some of you will know that I had to overcome two broken legs and a broken hip so I started not even being able to squat my bodyweight.  I had a couple buddies over to spot me.  To be honest, I had them come over to witness this and so I could show off a little.  Well, when I got done and racked the weight triumphantly one of my buddies…who had never done a squat with weights…said, “Hey, can I give that a try”.  Long story short, he squatted it with ease and threw on a couple of tens and did three reps before telling me that my lift was good, too.  Needless to say, I questioned my effort.  But I shouldn’t have.  I had went from a kid they thought might never walk again to squatting 225lbs.  I also want to point out I eventually did 600…..and that other guy never touched a weight again as far as I know!

While it’s good to have a little perspective, the guy you should always be concerned most about it the guy in the mirror.  Making that person you see in the mirror better is more important than what anyone else can do.  There’s always going to be someone stronger than you and smarter than you.  I just work on myself and let the chips fall where they may.  That’s been a tough lesson for me, but one that has led to my greatest gains.

Four Corners

by Thom Van Vleck

The Jackson Weightlifting Club has been a big part of my life.  As those who know me will already be aware it was started by my grandfather Dalton Jackson in 1928.  It was just him and some friends who were interested in weightlifting.  They never competed.  They were interested in training to get better, be stronger, healthier, and maybe impress some girls!  The club wasn’t official then, just friends.

Then in 1957 he got my Uncles, Wayne and Phil Jackson into lifting.  Wayne eventually won the Teenage Nationals in Olympic lifting and was a 4 time Missouri State Olympic lifting champion and won the powerlifting title once.  Phil won some meets as well but got more into bodybuilding and was in Muscular Development one time and in Strength and Health another time.  Phil got an “official” club going with a logo they wore on their lifting suits when in competition and they actually achieved something quite remarkable.  They won two state team titles in Olympic lifting against clubs in St. Louis and Kansas City.  Not bad for a little club from a little town.  They charged dues and opened a key gym as well.  At one time it had almost 30 members and had Phil not joined the Air Force (he was due to be drafted anyways) and left for four years I wonder where the club would have went.

As it was, the club kind of played out and by 1971 it was all but gone.  I joined my Uncle Wayne starting in 1977 with my own training and the “key gym” was again started in 1980.  We soon had about 20 members and had a couple of guys competing at the state level in powerlifting.  In 1982 I joined the Marines and soon the club died again.

Then, in 1988, I got back into hard training.  Slowly, I revived the concept of the JWC and in 1992 started competing again.  I had a few guys that traveled with me and we were mostly “unofficial” but we were a group of guys that lifted, traveled to meets, and shared a love of the iron.

In 1997 I had a chance to do a strongman show with Omega Force.  I invited my buddy Brian Kerby and we did 6 shows in 4 days in St. Louis including one final event that was the warm up for the US Nationals Strongman Contest at the Family Arena in St. Charles.  There were several thousand people there.  Brian and I were invited to travel to Austrailia and New Zealand with Omega Force but we had full time jobs, families….but we became open to the idea of doing strongman shows as part of an evangelism effort and decided to start a local group of our own.

We were trying to come up with a “catch” name for our group when Brian came to me and said that he thought we should go by the name “Jackson Weightlifting Club”.  At that time it really got me to thinking of what the club was really about.  I will say that since then we have done over 250 shows that have reached out to over 25,000 people plus we have directed about 20 lifting meets (including the USAWA Nationals) and at a couple dozen Highland Games and Strongman Contests.  But the club was something much deeper than that for me.

As I explored in my mind and heart what the club was all about I came up with what I call the “Four Corners” of the JWC foundation.  These four cornerstones are what everything the JWC does is built upon.

Faith:  First comes Faith.  The JWC exists because of the Christian Principles laid down by my grandfather and passed on to each subsequent generation.  The most importan principle being faith.  Faith is the belief in something with strong conviction.  My own interpretation is that it gives us the ability to believe in something even when the evidence seems to be against it.  Faith is important in lifting because it takes a long time and  lot of work to make progress in lifting.  You have to have faith in yourself, your lifting program, and believe it will pay off.  Many fail in lifting because they didn’t have faith.  To me it is most important.

Honor:  Honor has several meanings and the one I intend means having integrity.  There is a Viking poem I have hanging in my gym that talks about how everything can be taken away from you.  You can lose you fortune, your family, even your life.  But the one thing that NO ONE can take from you, only you can give away, is your Honor.  It is your reputation.  It is a core value in my family and thus the JWC.

Strength:  This word implies being strong.  But strong in what?  My use of this word in the JWC is that it strength goes beyond the physical state.  I know that lifting weights gives me strength.  Sure, I become stronger, but I also gain strength to endure.  I gain emotional and mental strength.  Most of all I gain spiritual strength from having goals and achieving them leading to a belief in myself and what I can accomplish in all things through hard work and sweat equity.

Wisdom:  Wisdom is last on the list but it’s still important.  Wisdom to me it the ability use intelligence for a greater end.  It is the ability to use knowledge with good judgement, common sense, and prudence.  I want to gain knowledge but if I can’t find the best way to use it then I have failed.  Lifting smart brings me success.  The best lifting routine will give you the greatest results with the least effort and the least chance of injury.  Weightlifting quantifies that result and makes it easier for me to be wise in all things in life.  Even when the results aren’t as easy to quantify I know wisdom is at work.

Over the years, at our strongman evangelism shows, these core values were at the base of our messages.  While our shows often focused on Christ and were at Churches and Bible Camps we often did shows at schools and community gatherings that focused on citizenship, staying off drugs, and other more secular topics.  We never denied who we were, Christians, but the “four corners” were always there.

I hope that some day another generation in my family picks up the JWC flag. That is my next goal in life, passing this tradition on.  The JWC has produced many champions and contest winners, but it is most proud of who those people were rather than their athletic accomplishments.  It always has been and hopefully always will be!

Taking 2015 Memberships

by Al Myers

It’s time to start renewing your USAWA memberships for the next year!  Memberships in the USAWA run for the calendar year – first of January to the end of December. A few have already renewed their memberships, and are listed at bottom of the membership roster under 2015 memberships.  Once January 1st rolls around, the 2014 membership list is be “archived” and the 2015 list will come to the top as the active membership list.

Membership applications are located on the upper left column of the website under “forms and applications”.   Just print out the form, write a check for $25 to the USAWA, and mail it to me.  Once I get it I will add your name to the membership roster.   This roster is the official listing of our current members.  It is always kept up to date to allow for anyone to check their membership status or for meet directors to verify memberships.

OTSM Championships

by Eric Todd

This Saturday past, ET’s House of Iron and Stone played host to the third annual “Battle in the Barn”. This year’s affair also served as the Old Time Strongman Championship for the USAWA. It turned out to be a great competition with some new lifters as well as some of the old players as well. The weather was cold, but the competition was not. Some fantastic lifting was done.

We started out with the Saxon Snatch. To my knowledge, this is only the second time this lift has been contested in the USAWA. Keith Thompson and I tied for the top mark of 105 pounds, just shy of Mark Mitchell’s all time record of 107. Next we hit the Apollon’s Lift. In this Discipline, Keith Thompson once again tied for top honors, this time with Mike Lucht, making his return to all-round. They both hit 305 pounds. However, this was possibly overshadowed by Jenna Lucht’s 150 pound lift, which tied her for the all-time female record with the powerful Felicia Simms. As the day progressed, the weights got heavier. We moved into the Dinnie Lift. This time, I had the top lift of 700 pounds, missing a 780 record attempt. Greg Cook hit a very impressive 650 his very first time trying the lift, and Keith Thompson hitting a 600 without the aid of a hook grip. We headed to the last lift of the day, the Hand and Thigh. Keith Thompson hit an easy PR of half a ton. I finally hit the elusive 1500, first time going this high in a meet. I missed a record attempt of 1565. Jenna hit an easy 600 for her top lift in the meet, but then shamed us all with a huge 810 record attempt. Mind you, on my top end lifting, an ant could have squeaked through. Jenna cleared by four inches!

Also in attendance were Lance Foster and Dean Ross. Both cease to amaze me with their dedication to our organization and their attendance at meet in the area. Both came ready to battle, and actually flip flopped in places. Lance got fourth in total weight lifted, and Dean when formula and age adjustment was made.

MEET RESULTS

USAWA OTSM Championships
November 1st, 2014
ET’s House of Iron and Stone
Turney, Missouri

Meet Director: Eric Todd
Judges: Lance Foster, Mike Murdock, Eric Todd
Record keeper and expeditor: Mike Murdock
Loaders: Scott Tully and all competitors
Celebrity Guest appearance: Conan Wass

Lifts: Saxon Snatch, Appollon’s Lift, Dinnie Lift, Hand and Thigh

Women’s Results

LIFTER AGE BWT SAX APP DIN H@T TOT PTS
Jenna Lucht 23 144 40 150 420 600 1210 1321.9

Men’s Results

LIFTER AGE BWT SAX APP DIN H&T TOT PTS
Eric Todd 39 255.5 105 300 700 1500 2605 2042.8
Greg Cook 57 250 80 190 650 950 1870 1749.4
Keith Thompson 28 239.5 105 305 600 1000 2010 1628.3
Dean Ross 71 267.5 60 115 420 720 1315 1330.3
Lance Foster 48 335 65 170.5 490 720 1445 1066.1
Mike Lucht 32 227.5 90 305 525 xxx 920 765.6

Notes: BWT is bodyweight in pounds. All lifts recorded in pounds. TOT is total pounds lifted.  PTS are total adjusted points for age and bodyweight corrections.

4th attempt for records:
Apollon’s Lift: Greg Cook 205#
Hand and Thigh: 810#

Record breaking after meet:
Snatch From Hang: Mike Lucht 170# judged by Mike Murdock and Lance Foster
Right hand 2” Vertical Bar: Keith Thompson 215# judged by Lance Foster and Mike Murdock
Cyr Press: Jenna Lucht 70# judged by Lance Foster and Mike Murdock
Harness Lift: Eric Todd 2560 Judged by Lance Foster

Burton Record Session

by Al Myers

Group picture from the Burton Powerhouse Record Session.

I had an absolutely great time last weekend in England at the 2014 IAWA Gold Cup, promoted by Steve Gardner of the Burton Powerhouse Gym.   I met so many great enthusiastic all rounders, and witnessed some outstanding lifting.  Plus I got to share stories with many ole friends from overseas, and be part of the largest attended Gold Cup in IAWA history.

However, the fun didn’t end on the day of the Gold Cup for me.  The Monday afterwards Steve hosted a Record Day Session in his gym for his gym members which my Dad, Denny, and I got to be part of.  Since there were SO MANY lifters at the Gold Cup, it was virtually impossible for everyone to get their second Gold Cup lift in on the meet day.  All of the Burton gym members, along with myself, my dad, and Denny postponed our second lifts for this record session to help accommodate getting the Gold Cup finished on time.

I truly enjoy getting the opportunity to lift in new gyms – especially gyms whose training focus is All Round Weightlifting. Steve has just recently moved his gym to a new facility which is much larger.  This was my first time seeing his new gym, and I was very impressed!  Steve has the gym set up with great lifting atmosphere, with the walls lined with many pictures, awards, and  other items of motivation.  I tried to take it all in – but know I missed some of it.  It has to be one of the best All Round gyms in the World!

Eight  Burton Powerhouse gym members took part in this Record Session (James Gardner, Chris Findon, Graham Saxton, Steve Gardner, Karen Gardner, John Gardner, Pete Tryner, and Paula Thompson), plus myself, my dad LaVerne, and Denny Habecker.  This made for a full night of lifting!   Steve ran the evening of lifting like he runs meets – very efficiently and quick.  The two platforms were constantly in action with more record lifts being done.   I was most impressed with Chris Findon doing a dumbbell Snatch of 48Kg after recent elbow surgery, Big Graham and John’s 2 man hack lift of 350 Kg,  and Karen’s 90 kg Trap Bar Deadlift.   And I got to add that getting to see Denny set another record in the Pullover and Push was a pleasure (remember to get the big belly bounce Denny!!!).    Denny was eating so well on this trip that he went UP a weight class in 2 days after the Gold Cup and decided to pick his same Gold Cup lift for his record session lift!

Denny Habecker with a record 95 KG Pullover and Push.

I picked the Index Finger Hack Lift for my second lift – and succeeded with a 90 kg lift which I was pleased with.  I still have the proof of that lift on my torn left index finger as I type.  After watching John Gardner lift a huge thumbless grip DL at the Gold Cup, and since this is also on of my favorite lifts,  I talked John into joining me for a 2 man thumbless deadlift.  This is not an official lift in IAWA, so we were doing it just for fun.  We lifted 345 Kgs, and just missed 365.   We have our sights set on 400 KG now!

The evening ended with myself introducing the Burton Gym to teeth lifting.  I made a teeth bit for them, and challenged Graham to a lift off.  This was not really a fair fight, since Graham has never done any teeth lifting before and I have, but he was a gamer and took me on.  We had lots of fun with it – and I bet the next time I go back to the Burton Powerhouse the gym will have mastered the teeth lifting and will be putting up big numbers in it.

All this was finished in an hour and a half.    I want to thank Steve and all the members of the Burton Powerhouse Gym for all they do for the IAWA, and especially for their work in making the 2014 IAWA Gold Cup a great success!

MEET RESULTS (PDF) – Record_Session_at_Burton_27.10.14

My Gyms

by Eric Todd

I expect everyone has an aptitude for something. Everyone else in my immediate family has an aptitude for art or music. About as far as my aptitude for anything artistic goes, however, is listening to songs on the radio in my truck. I always leaned more to the physical side of things. It is not that I was a dummy. When in elementary, I was selected for our school’s gifted program…twice. Yep, that’s right, I may have been the only two time quitter of Parkview Elementary’s “independent Study”. It was supposed to be challenging, yes? No, it was boring and caused me to miss recess and PE. So I quit. However, they saw the intellectual giant that I was, and made the exception to try and get me back in a couple years later. My parents thought maybe being a bit older would help, so I was back in. Still boring, and I was still missing PE and recess. On top of that, it was in an old turn of the century school with dim lighting and lockers and desks that smelled of old bologna sandwiches. After I quit again, they said I could not return. OK by me!

Through the years I have trained in a number of environments. Some, just on a visit, and some played the role as “my” gym for a while. I started off at home. At three, I started to run with my dad. I saw him take off, and did not want to be left behind. I put on my mud boots and took chase. I think that day, he ran about a mile. I ran about a third of that. Mom and Dad were impressed, and I kept on chasing him, day after day. My distances would increase, and my speed would improve. Why was I doing it though? I guess because my dad was, and maybe I was just born with something that made it appeal to me.

For whatever reason, I always had a love for strength. I was always asking my dad to flex for me. I would assume it got tiresome to him. I remember going to see The Shepherd of the Hills play in Branson, MO. In the story, “Young Matt” lifted a steam engine so his dad could work on it. We would visit the site during the daytime, and I would try and lift the steam engine. I think I gave it my first try at 5 years old. I never was able to get that thing off the ground. But, I was lifting everything else: the edges of furniture, rocks, logs, etc. One time Grandpa cut a couple old locust trees that were out past the old outhouse near our home. I spent hours pretending the cut branches were weights and I was a weightlifter.

I grew up wrestling with dad. I was a rough and tumble boy, and I liked it when dad would get on the floor to tussle with me. I started probably about as young as when I could walk, and we would grapple often. When I was nine, we were talking to this guy at church. He was a custodian at a nearby school. He told us of a small fry wrestling club that practiced there. I had no idea that it was something you could do competitively against people your own age, and I was immediately in love with the idea. It was about the time I started wrestling, that dad got me lifting. At first, he just made me a 10# dumbbell out of some old sand weights and showed me a one arm curl and a one arm standing press. I added these to my regiment of pushups, sit-ups and running. I did this routine almost every night. After I had started getting a bit of a foundation, I started working out in the milkbarn with dad. This was my first “gym” We had a concrete weight set that we would do curls, military presses, and floor presses on the concrete milking floor. That is, until I was at a junk sale at the salebarn. There was a weightlifting bench at it, and I had the winning bid of $1.75. From then on, we benched in style. After seeing Rocky IV, I filled a gunny sack with rocks and sand and hung it from one of the pulleys on the ceiling. I had my first lat pull machine.

When I was in high school, I would lift both at home and at the school. The school gym came in two forms. There was an old universal ,a “good girl” machine, a “bad girl” machine, and an old apparatus called a leaper that was like a squat machine for improving your vertical leap. These items were in the boys locker room at the school. Then down the road at the field house, there was a better weight room with power racks, benches, bumper plates, etc.

When I want to college at Missouri Valley, their weightroom was unimpressive. I was able to get OK workouts there, but they would only let you do “safety squats”. I mean actual safety squats where you hold onto the rack and use your arms and upper back to help pull yourself back up into an upright position. Their selling point when they first showed me the weightroom was 4 “back tracks”. They said there were five of them in the nation, and MO Valley had four of them, with Bo Jackson owning the other. Just so you know, that if there are only five of such a groundbreaking piece of equipment out there, and no other colleges have jumped on the bandwagon, there is probably a reason why. They were an absolute piece of crap , and doing them was an absolute waste of time.

After my fourth year of wrestling I was out of eligibility, but I had to go a fifth year to complete my degree. Well, for individuals who were not on sports teams, you could normally get a workout in in the school weightroom at around midnight. As I usually enjoy sleeping at that hour, I went to get a membership at the local YMCA. Since I had no money, it was only like $10 a month. And since my wrestling career at Valley was over, I had lots of free time. So, I spent most of it lifting at the Y.

During the summers, me and my brother would get a membership at “Camelot Fun and Fitness” in Cameron to work out together. The only place in town, it was as lame as it sounds. The weights were right there with the cardio equipment. There was a Metallica cassette tape in a tape deck, but as soon as you turned it on, the old ladies on the treadmill turned up Oprah a little louder. You would turn up Metallica just so you could hear it, but they would soon poke at the remote until Oprah drowned it out. Not exactly a place to get hardcore. So we started using membership fees to buy bits and pieces of equipment at a time.

Upon graduation, I got a teaching and coaching gig at Excelsior Springs. They had a decent weightroom there, and I spent lots of time after school and/or practice in there. While I still enjoyed lifting, something was missing. I was going through the motions. Why was I lifting? Was it just cause I always had? I had always lifted to get strong so I could excel at wrestling, I felt. Well, I was done wrestling. I needed something new. I found strongman. This was something that came rather naturally to me. Meanwhile I took a position at Kearney School District. While they had a nice weightroom, I soon decided I would be better served just taking my workouts at home. I had been accumulating equipment for a number of years, and had a decent setup in my basement. So, for I time I split where I was training. One day, however, I was in the school weightroom after track practice. I was going for a top end overhead press. Unfortunately, there was a group of high school kids from another sports team in there jacking about. Their coach was in there with them and in on the fun, so I did not feel it was my place to reprimand them. After 4 or 5 misses, I was fed up. I couldn’t perform in that atmosphere. So I left, and never looked back.

I went back to my home gym full time. Eventually, I built my tin can barn and moved all my strongman stuff (as well as some weightlifting stuff) out there. So, now I have two gyms! I take most of my weekday gym workouts in my basement gym, and my weekend workouts take place in the barn. So, I guess I kinda came full circle. I started off my weightlifting career about a mile from where I train now. I have been lots of different places, and weight is weight. I have loved lifting it everywhere, in whatever form, from sand filled to iron, to stone. It has become a part of me. I still cannot paint a picture. I still cannot play an instrument (well, I do play a mean “Old Suzanna” on the mouth harp). And though I enjoy eating a bologna sandwich as much as the next guy, the smell of those lockers still haunt me. But I can lift me some weights!

New England Gold Cup

by Frank Ciavattone

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT

This meet will be the same as Art’s, a limit of 5 lifts for records.  This meet will have no entry form to fill out or need an entry.  Just an email or a call to me. The date of the meet is 11/29/2014 at the Norwood Recreational Center, 165 Nahatan St., Norwood.

E-mail: fdc2955@aol.com

Home Phone: 508-668-5200

Cell Phone: 508-801-6279

Entry fee of $20 will help cover cost of awards, insurance, etc.  This can be given at weigh in.

Entry deadline by phone or email November 22nd, 2014.

Also, there will be a pioneer meet for a trial of wheelchair lifts by Paul Dallalis!  The town of Norwood is again helping us out with a venue.  Pizza to follow the meet!

Backbreaker Pentathlon

By Al Myers

MEET ANNOUNCEMENT

Backbreaker Pentathlon

Meet Director: Bill Clark  & Joe Garcia

Date: Saturday, November 8th, 2014

Venue: Clark’s Gym, Columbia, Missouri

Weigh-ins: 8- 9 AM

Entry Fee: None

Entry Form: None

Awards: None

Membership: Must be a current USAWA Member

Lifts: Neck Lift, Hand and Thigh Lift, Back Lift, Hip Lift, Harness Lift

Record Day will follow the meet.

To enter, a confirmation must be sent to Bill Clark by the Tuesday preceding the meet. Bill can be reached by phone: 573-474-4510, Fax: 573-474-1449, or mail: Bill Clark, 3906 Grace Ellen Drive, Columbia, Missouri, 65202

Battle in the Barn

by Eric Todd

November 1, 2014, ET’s House of Iron and Stone will play host to the third annual “Battle in the Barn, an Old Time Strongman event. This year, three Old Time Strongman events will be contested, along with one traditional all-round lift. The lifts are as follows:

Saxon Snatch
Apollon’s lift
Hand and Thigh
Dinnie Lift

As we did last year, we will score this meet in 2 different ways. The first is by formula; the second is by straight weight lifted. I am not sure what they will look like yet, but there will be awards at this event.

Anyone who has been to my gym before know it is a “no-frills” facility. Climate control looks like an open window and a fan in the summer and a wood fire in the winter. The “restroom” is located outside, back behind the giant tin can that we lift in. But there is lots of iron. It is a great place to lift big weights and get strong.

After the meet, I am hoping to have a short record breaking session. I plan on having a couple records to shoot for and hope you do as well. Please contact me at SalGuimino@yahoo.com or on the forum with any questions or if you have a particular record you would like to attempt after the meet. Hope some of you can make it out for a great day of lifting. Entry is attached.

ENTRY FORM (PDF):  Battle in the Barn Entry