Shouts and heavy metal music filled the room as Emsy Clark marched up to the barbell with a determined look on his face. Time stood still as he lowered himself underneath over half a ton of iron. One push and it was over. Blood dripping from his nose, Coach Clark stood, purple in the face. He just secured his place as a world record holder in his weight class for a 1,005lb squat: an incredible feat of strength. His total score (combined weight of deadlift, squat, and bench press) in the powerlifting competition on Saturday, Feb 8 was 2,405. It is difficult to describe the intense work ethic required to achieve that level.
Coach Clark had to eat 8,000 calories a day for 12-16 weeks leading up to the competition.
The main focus of his diet was on protein.
“I’ve been lifting for 10 years,” he says in regards to his preparation for the lift.
Under Coach Clark’s apprenticeship, Kayla Brinkman also participated in the powerlifting competition but says she was dissatisfied with her performance.
According to Mrs. Brinkman, Coach Clark had squatted this weight before in practice.
However, he says that does not mean it is guaranteed in a competition.
“When you’re at your own gym, it’s a home-field advantage. Everything’s perfect. The spotters, the bar, and there’s no rush to put on knee wraps,” states Coach Clark.
Senior Adam Zarski lifts under Coach Clark’s supervision in the 8th-hour lifting class and was excited when he heard the news, “I can’t imagine even having a thousand pounds on my back.”
Coach Clark will be competing in a World competition in September and is unsure if he will try for more weight, “I already have the record so I don’t know how heavy I’ll go.”