2017 Journey Back to the Platform

So here we are... About 10 weeks out from my first full powerlifting meet in over a decade. After 21 years of training, competing, sustaining injuries, and recovering from them; at 36 years old I'm feeling stronger than ever. I have decided to commit to a couple of powerlifting competitions for 2017 in the 165 lb. open class (raw with wraps).

I competed in powerlifting several times between 2004 and 2007 in between regional and national level bodybuilding competitions which were my primary focus at that time. Back then I was a bantamweight bodybuilder and a 148 lb. powerlifter. I wanted to get bigger and stronger which has always been tough for me as a true ectomorph. I cut down my competition frequency which drastically reduced the number of weight cuts I had to impose and lessened the amount of  strict dieting I would endure so I could gain size and strength.

During that time I managed to break a vertebrate in my lower back and herniate a couple of discs for good measure. One day in 2012 my back went out, which seemed to be nothing new, but this time was very different. I had been having back problems off and on over the years and hadn't been able to squat or deadlift since 2011. This time the pain was so bad I couldn't even tie my shoes. I had missed several weeks of work, hell several weeks of life to be accurate. Terrified, I went to see a spine surgeon and various other specialists, only to find out the worst was true. I had been functioning with a broken back for the last several years and had not even known. After 2 years of rehab, avoiding squats and deadlifts and training intuitively to avoid aggravating injuries I was finally cleared to get back to squats, deadlifts and other heavy leg and back training again. I began training legs with friend and Saisei Sports co-founder Nick every week and started deadlifting about six months later.  A long time ago I decided that someday,  I would squat 500 lbs. and deadlift 500 lbs. and I'm happy to report that someday is fast approaching. I plan to achieve both of these dreams turned to goals by the end of 2017.

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So maybe you don't believe in quitting, maybe you don't believe in giving up. Or perhaps you once felt that way but life has handed you a set of circumstances that's got you questioning your principles, your ability or your potential. Maybe a serious injury or a few lackluster performances have you wondering if you can ever come back at all?  Let alone be as good as you once were or even better than you ever have. Well I'm here to tell you that you can.  Saisei means rebirth, it means to start again and to be better than you once were, using what you already have to improve like never before. We can all apply this philosophy in strength and fitness not just as an industry but first and foremost as a community.  So please follow along as I make my way back to the platform this year and put in my best effort to date to crush my biggest lifts ever!