Powerlifter | Max Effort Gym : St. Louis, MO
Basically I started powerlifting through the sport of football. In high school, and especially college, we concentrated on the three main core lifts; the squat, the bench and the deadlift, focusing on only getting stronger. I believe that mentality provided a great base for the sport of powerlifting because when I go to the gym to train it is not to get a pump or isolate something, it’s to get stronger.
After my college football career was over I still had an itch to compete, which powerlifting provided this outlet. Through all of this was also my uncle, John Ware, who was a legend in powerlifting and was the first person to break Bill Kazmaier’s record total in the super heavyweight division. He helped tremendously in my strength gains until he passed and I felt like I should continue on the tradition.
MY "AHA" MOMENT
I think mine came at the 2009 IPF World Championships. I was selected as an alternate on the US team and I took it as my chance to show I wasn't going there just for the experience, but to compete and place. This meet changed my outlook on powerlifting and made me want to become one of the best 275 pound powerlifters not only in the United States, but in the World.
MY SOURCE OF INSPIRATION
I have several people I have drawn inspiration from. In no particular order I would say my Uncle John Ware, my brother Jason and my wife Nicole. My Uncle John Ware is one of the greatest Super Heavyweights of all time in powerlifting so of course it's easy to draw inspiration from him. I always tried not only following in my brother's footsteps growing up but also trying to be better than him. I owe him a lot as he was a great athlete and really started me in weight lifting and helped turn on my competitive nature. I also say my wife as she sacrifices a lot in order for me to compete and get my training in. I wouldn't be able to do what I do without her and her support. What she puts up with, namely me, I can only draw inspiration from.
In terms of where I draw inspiration from I would say the human body and the idea of strength. I have been able to continually hit personal bests in each lift through the years and lift weight I never once thought I would be able to. With this in mind I find inspiration in knowing my body hasn't reached its peak yet and there is still strength out there to gain.
THE NEVER SETTLE ATTITUDE
"Never Settle" is pretty simple to me. As a powerlifter our bodies get beat down and I speak for a lot of us when I say we are never 100% healthy as we deal with a lot of small injuries along our training. It is in that point of training where my body is beat down and aches everywhere, I feel weak and everything (including warm ups) feels heavy. This is where I dig in, trust my program and make sure I push myself to the brink all in the quest to get stronger. This is what the mentality of "Never Settle" means to me.
I would say my biggest accomplishment in the sport of powerlifting is being selected to represent the United States in the 2013 World Games. I was only one of two US men selected. This event is the closest powerlifting has to the Olympics and is actually recognized by the IOC. The unfortunate thing about this meet is I had the worst meet I possibly could have had. With that said I still take pride in the fact I was one of ten individuals in the world invited from the heavyweight division in a competition held every four years.
THE THING THAT KEEPS ME GOING
Goals. I am a person who sets short and long-term goals which set me on the right path. I know what needs to be done to get there and in simpler terms, it gets done. Sometimes this means waking up before everyone else to go get my workout in or watching my boys for 8 hours, working for 8 hours and then hitting the gym. If I'm scheduled to work out that day, it's going to happen.
THE END GOAL
To become as strong as I possibly can. I believe if I can do this I will achieve my goals of becoming one of the best 275 pound powerlifters of all time, winning an IPF Gold medal and getting an 855 pound full meet deadlift.