Top powerlifting area for the USAPL Summer Showdown,, bottom strongman competition area for Georgia's Strongest Man. They're side by side. @uncleboo56 and I said we want to compete in the same venue in our respective sports one day. This might be our chance next year. #garagegymlife #writinglife #blog #blogger #writersofinstagram #powerlifting #strongman #goals #bgbcommunity
I stopped by the USA Powerlifting Summer Showdown Saturday, June 11th intending to only stay a couple of hours. I was there to support my Gogginsforce teammate, Perry Ellis, Jr. at the meet but I’d been awake for about 17 hours straight by the time it started so I was eager to pop in and leave. Man I’m glad I stayed! Because I stayed, I got to watch Nikita Koba compete and actually hang out with him for the first time. I originally met Nikita through an Animal Barbell Club seminar I organized about a year ago at Iron Beast Gym in Gainesville, GA and we’ve subsequently competed at a few of the same meets. It was a pleasure seeing him again and even more so when he introduced me to his training partner, Mike Braga. Mike’s a fellow former Marine and we hit it off from the start.
The event was great from start to finish, despite the $25 entry fee which I think was a bit steep. By comparison, the Arnold Sports Festival has more vendors and is $10 cheaper for a day pass. One thing I loved was that the Georgia’s Strongest Man contest was going on less than fifty yards away so I could easily see what was going on. In fact, about halfway through the day, I got a message on Instagram that one of my fellow writers was there watching, Dustin Reed another garage gym powerlifter try his hand at strongman. I headed over there and we had a great chat about marketing and the business of writing.
Then I headed back to the powerlifting area and got drafted to take video with Steve Goggins’ camera. He messed up by leaving me unattended with his phone. I took selfies with the judges, Bryce Lewis, random competitors, people in the stands and Perry’s wife in between videos of Perry lifting. The best was when I took a selfie and sent it to Maliek Derstine on Facebook Messenger. (Steve’s face was hysterical when he realized the next day how many selfies I’d taken with his phone!)
Needless to say, Perry put on a show as usual, narrowly edging out Bryce Lewis for the Best Overall award.
Congratulations to him and to Nikita Koba who broke a Georgia State Squat Record and who made my day when he introduced me to Mike as “the Garage Gym Life Guy”.
By the time I got home, I’d been awake for 23 hours but it was well worth it. I was also pretty pumped when I checked my weight the next morning before cardio and found that my bodyweight was back down to 199 after ballooning up to 208 the previous week. I realize that it was probably water weight but I don’t care. I’m back where I was. Now it’s time to get back to the task of transforming my physique from weekend warrior to legitimate strength athlete. I’m tracking my progress towards that goal in a series of blog posts under the category Becoming Who I Should Have Been. Watch for it!
John Greaves III is a freelance writer in North Georgia. He is the founder of Garage Gym Life and a graduate of The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. John’s diverse athletic and writing background allows him to write about a variety of topics from sports to business. You can find out more about him including how to have him guest post on your blog, write for your magazine or ghostwrite a piece for you by clicking here.