I got my start in lifting as a 7th grader when my older brother took me to the high school’s summer strength and conditioning program in Superior, WI to help me get faster and stronger for football. My freshmen year our high school got a new head football coach who was also a former powerlifter. I continued to strength train under his direction really getting hooked my freshmen year even though I wasn’t very strong and only weighed 115lbs. He created a club powerlifting team at our high school and I did my very first powerlifting meet my junior year in high school. My senior year in high school I took 2nd at the WI State high school powerlifting meet in the 181lb weight class with a 1200lb total.
I continued to lift in college but much of my focus was playing football for a year and baseball for 3 years at Carleton College. After making the decision to not play baseball my senior year in college I decided to switch my focus back on powerlifting. I did my first meet my senior year at the MN State Meet lifting raw and totaling 1405lb in the 220lb class. I continued to compete and put on weight and won my first national meet at the 2012 Raw Nationals in the 242lb weight class earning a spot on the world team for the 2013 IPF Raw Worlds. With the new weight classes I cut down to 231 and took 10th at worlds. 5 weeks later I had my best meet to date at the 2013 Raw Nationals totaling 1708lbs in the 231 class, taking 2nd place.
Powerlifting has meant a lot for me over the years for many reasons. Initially it started as it does for many people, a way to improve for sports. After college it became a way for me to still compete at a high level without having to be on a college program. Over the years I have met many people and created friendships with other lifters close to home, across the country and even around the world. I have been fortunate enough to have some success in this sport but at the same time it’s very humbling as there’s always someone out there stronger than you and there’s always more weight to put on the bar. I hope to compete and improve for years to come.
HOMETOWN: Whitefish Bay, WI
Athletic Accolades for 2013 Season:
- 2nd place, 120+ kgs Master 3 (ages 60-69) at IPF Masters World Bench Press Championships in Prague, CZE with a bench press of 215 kgs/ 474 lbs.
- 2nd place, 120+ kgs Master 3a (ages 60-64) at USAPL Masters Men’s National Powerlifting Championships. Squat: 245 kgs/ 540 lbs, Bench Press: 217.5 kgs/ 479.5 lbs, and Deadlift: 175 kgs/ 386 lbs. Total: 637.5 kgs/ 1405.4 lbs.
- 1st place, 120+ kgs Master 3 (ages 60-69) at IPF/ NAPF Pan American Powerlifting Championships. Squat 225 kgs/ 496 lbs, Bench Press: 220 kgs/ 485 lbs, and Deadlift: 195 kgs/ 430 lbs. Total 640 kgs/ 1410.9 lbs. Four Pan American records.
- 1st place, 120+ kgs Master 3a (ages 60-64) and 9th place Open Men at USAPL National Bench Press Championships. Bench Press: 225 kgs/ 496 lbs. Qualified for fifth IPF Masters World Bench Press Team in 2014 at Northumberland, Great Britain.
- Lifted on Team U.S.A. November 24, 2013, at the IPF/ NAPF Pan American Bench Press Championships.
For over fifty years, I’ve trained, barely missing a workout and always in shape. As I look back, I’d say my longevity is my greatest accomplishment. I’ve squatted and deadlifted 500 lbs or more for 43 years. I’ve bench pressed 300 lbs or more for 43 years. (I’m changing my deadlift pull from traditional to sumo and not fully adjusted to the change so my deadlift has been low since 2011.)
Continue reading Athlete Profile – Robert Crawford
Learn more about Alexa Schillinger, three time world champion from our state. A flawless, fierce competitor. She is also an inaugural inductee into the Wisconsin High School Powerlifting Association Hall of Fame.
In 1997 while lifting at a YMCA in Daytona Beach, Florida, I was approached by two guys who invited me to a powerlifting meet. “You’re strong.” they said. “You should come and lift”. I went, and ended up winning the teenage and open divisions at 17 years of age. The very next month I tore my ACL (first of several times) and did not compete again until nine years later. Although only in the sport a brief time, it impacted me in a way that would change my future.
In 2005 I underwent several major abdominal surgeries, and due to a heart problem had lost 25 lbs. I wanted to get strong again, so I typed “powerlifting meets Seattle” into my search engine and found a link to USAPL in Washington. The 2006 state meet was coming up and I was determined to compete. I trained, practiced my lifts, studied the rules and purchased my singlet. I won the bench-only division in the 52 kilo class. More importantly, I met several people who proved to be integral in my powerlifting career (Kevin Stewart, Faith Ireland, Paula Houston, Todd Christensen, Bull Stewart and Willie Austin). I competed regularly in bench-only until late 2007 when I decided to try full-power. My first equipped total was 777 lbs in the 56 kilo class.
Continue reading Athlete Profile – Kat Kasabuske
After 17 years of trying to master the game of golf, I became interested in gaining strength in order to hit the golf ball further. A few months into training the squat, bench, and deadlift, I lost interest in golf and wanted to pursue powerlifting. I found Ford’s Gym in Madison, WI and learned a lot about the sport from Ford Sheridan and Rick Schwalbach. While training at Ford’s and watching videos of USAPL and IPF meets on YouTube I became increasingly enamored with the idea of perfecting the power lifts and putting myself to the test on the platform. A year into lifting I entered the USAPL Badger Open and got to compete alongside the defending World Champion, Dan Williams. I was hooked! Here was someone that weighed within 3 pounds of me, and was totaling nearly 600 more pounds. So I set out to learn how to better use powerlifting gear, and see how good I could get at this fantastic sport.
And 4 years later, it has been a tremendously rewarding endeavor. I’ve been able to compete at two USAPL National Championships and have gone from totaling 1268@177 to 1730@204. Although I am very pleased with my progress, I am still roughly 200 pounds shy of the National Champion in my weight class and I’m just as intrigued as ever to figure out how far I can go.