Reflections from the 2014 Wisconsin High School (WHSPA) State Powerlifting Meet.


I decided to include a few final thoughts and reflections from my trip to Osceola, WI (from seat 22F on a Boeing 717).



1. I’d like to praise all of the coaches at the meet this weekend. I was impressed with the extreme level of respect and courtesy that they demonstrated to each other during the entire meet. It was no coincidence that the lifters were the same way. What great role models these young lifters have! I think this attribute (intrinsically rewarding) is the reason why so many coaches in the WHSPA have been involved in the sport for 20+ years.


2. The atmosphere and intensity of the meet was amazing! I stand by my tweet from the Saturday morning session of lifting.



3. Who’s Coaching Whom? There was also something different about the interaction between the coaches and the lifters at this meet. I couldn’t put my finger on what it was until after the weekend. The coaches and lifters had excellent dialogue and communication between each other. The coach and the lifter communicated in a very succinct, efficient, and feedback oriented way (seen later from advanced lifters). Many of the coaches have taught their lifters how to kinesthetically sense & feel (and communicate) key points of the lift.  In addition to the coaches visual feedback, this feedback was used to adjust the game plan and select attempts.


4. I’m starting to think “southern hospitality” is a myth. After a long and hard winter, the people of Wisconsin were more hospitable than many places that I’ve visited in the south. The parents of River Falls HS put together several hospitality rooms that would rival the best of what South Louisiana has to offer.


5. No doubt, the most impressive lift of the weekend was Lauren Lent’s 405lbs squat at a body weight of 118! To put into perspective, that’s the same 114lbs BOYS squat record in the state of Louisiana. I guarantee that guy weighed 118lbs when he lifted.

Lauren Lent

The audience prior to the “squat” command for 405lbs!



6. As written in the preview, Wisconsin has more than its fair share of national and international elite lifters. The WHSPA inducted 8 new members into their Hall-of-fame. It was great to see some of my “old” friends getting inducted.
Inductees: Kyle Harvey (Kaukauna), Chris Alitz (Holmen), Stephanie Seebruck (Necedah), Phillip Rotar (Lincoln), Jasmine Brewer (Riverdale), Robyn Niederkorn O’Reilly (GET), Mack Beasley (Neenah), Kamie Bluell (Necedah), & Alyssa Hitchcock (Neenah).

Robyn O'Reilly

2014 WHSPA Hall of Fame Inductee – Robyn (Niederkorn) O’Reilly – GET

Congrats! More information and past inductees can be found here.


6. I had several failures this weekend. Prior to each trip, I sit down and write very specific goals and outcomes. With two of these goals, I completely failed. a) I planned to resurrect my Facebook page, but that was a fail. Maybe you could visit my Facebook page and like it (for a little motivation). b) I planned to release a report each afternoon within hours of the last deadlift. Fail! Fortunately, I spent my normal writing and photo editing time talking with many of you. I’m very thankful for that time. Those conversations are what made the trip successful for me.


7. My favorite picture and moment of the meet:  A father-son embrace after “their” last attempt deadlift. After a hard-working and sacrificing season, this picture can be used to represent the overall passion and emotion for many of the lifters, coaches, and parents this weekend.



Thanks to everyone who made it a great trip! I can not wait to come back.