What is Possible?

Do you ever wonder what it would be like if 600lbs was your warmup deadlift? Do you ever wonder what it would be like if you arms were the size of your thighs and your thighs were the size of tree trunks? Do you ever wonder what is possible? What are your limits?

Last night I got to witness what is possible at the World’s Strongest Man Super Series 2008. It was a parade of giants marching across the stage at the Madison Square Garden Theater.
1. Mariusz Pudzianowski
2. Derek Poundstone
3. Terry Hollands
4. Hugo Girard
5. Magnus Samuelsson
6. Kevin Nee
7. Travis Ortmayer
8. Jarke Dymek
9. Dave Ostlund
10. Mark Philippi
11. Brian Shaw

The contest showcased six amazing events.
The first event was a Power Relay Flip and Carry. Flip a 900lb tire over 5 times and then pick up two large farmer handles weighing over 300lbs each and carry them 40 feet.

The second event was the Eleiko Last Man Standing Deadlift. Each man lined up and took turns deadlifting a barbell after each round the weight went up. They had a mere 30 seconds from when the competitor before them completed their lift. The contest started at around 320 kilos and went up to 405 kilos. That’s 891 pounds!

Husafeld Stone Carry. This event involved each competitor picking up a 400lb metal tombstone-shaped object and carrying it as far as they are able. It was by far the most grueling event for the competitors. Nobody had an easy time with the event and most people looked absolutely miserable carrying the heavy metal slab.

Axel Clean and Press. This was arguably the most entertaining event. Competitors had one minute to clean and press a 300lb tire axel as many times as they can. Due to the large diameter of the axel the competitors had to use some creative methods to shoulder the bar. It made for some real exciting lifting.

After the first four events the top six competitors went on to the finals.

The Super Yoke and Duck Walk Medley. Competitors have to lift a massive 500lb yoke on their back and walk 40 feet with it and then put it down and pick up a huge 400lb “T” handled weight and carry between their legs to the finish line.
The grand finale was of course the Atlas Stones. This is the quintessential strongman contest. Each strongman had to successively shoulder four large boulders ranging from 250lbs to 420lbs and place them into large receptacles.

Travis Ortmayer won the evening and Derek Poundstone was an extremely close second.  I look forward to seeing both of these competitors in the finals. Watching this show of amazing strength made me ask myself what is possible? If these guys can be that amazingly strong, then there is certainly hope that all of us can be a little stronger than we are now…maybe even a lot stronger.

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