Last month Eau Claire North senior Ryan Gray became a national champion in powerlifting. As Chance Dickman tells us in this week's Gordy's Athlete of the Week, Gray's work ethic has led to his success.
Squat, deadlift, bench, repeat...That's routine of a power lifter. And for Eau Claire North Senior Ryan Gray, it's a routine he's put a lot of time into.
Ryan Gray says, "Five days a week, sometimes six, two to three hours a day, its' hard work."
That hard work has paid off tremendously for Gray, but being a successful power lifter wasn't always his first priority."
Gray says, "I started out sophomore year just as a beginner, I guess. I didn't really know what was up or anything, just obsessed with lifting, getting bigger for football, and then it became more than that. It became my love, and doing it all the time, and became pretty good at it."
And that he did. Gray became both a State and National Powerlifting Champion in the 181 pound high school division. Gray says, "It was just amazing putting in the time, and it's awesome getting all the support from everybody, and really fun. I took the state record squat and the bench too, which was really fun."
Chance Dickman, "Well my maximum bench press is, about the bar. Ryan's maximum, 392 pounds."
Gray says, "Yeah I guess there's just a lot of other kids that just look bigger than me and stuff, so they're always just amazed. They're just like, you're arms aren't that big, but you bench three hundred ninety-two pounds. It just doesn't make sense. Freshman, sophomore year I was probably like one hundred thirty pounds, one of the little kids. I probably benched like one hundred thirty-five pounds. I came a long way."
Gray's high school powerlifting career has now come to an end, but it's not something that he's going to give up anytime soon, "In the future next year, to be able to compete collegiate nationals and college try to compete for a number one spot there, and taking home the gold would be cool."
Ryan says, he'll continue his powerlifting career after he attends basic training for the National Guard this summer. Reporting in Eau Claire, Chance Dickman, for Sport Scene 13.