BY COSHANDRA DILLARD
A Tyler man has received national recognition and can claim a world record. Greg Powell, 47, holds the world record in the Men’s Masters 220-pound class for bench pressing 650 pounds during the Association of Benchers and Deadlifters event in Las Vegas last month. The 216-pounder lifted more than three times his weight.
“My goal for a long time was to bench press three times my body weight,” he said. “I did two pounds over three times my body weight.”
In addition, Powell participated in The International Powerlifting League contest, also held in November. He placed first with a 644-pound bench. His lift resulted in the Best Lifter in the Master division award.
Powell has enjoyed a 30-year powerlifting career, beginning at age 15. A self-described “scrawny kid,” he was inspired to pump iron and then compete. He had his first meet in Oklahoma at 18. Today, he enters at about four contests each year.
“I’ve been doing this for a long time,” he said. “You want it to mean something. When you set a world record you’ve accomplished something. As a Christian, it’s been a platform to share God’s work. God’s given me the strength to do it. I’m just blessed to have the ability to do this.”
Powell is on the road to lifting 700 pounds and has unofficially done it at a gym twice.