LP lifter takes second in world championships

August 20, 2018

La PORTE — Four thousand miles away, in Manchester, England, there are few people who have ever heard of La Porte, Indiana.

Before he came home, Chris Meadows made sure he gave them a performance worth remembering.

Competing in the Amateur World Powerlifting Congress World Championship, the 43-year-old won second place in the Master 1 125 kilogram weight class.

Some might think placing second would be upsetting, but not Meadows.

“Not at all,” he said.

In his first world championship, after only powerlifting for two years, second place on a world stage is nothing to scoff at.

“I’m really excited,” he said. “I think the trip itself taught me quite a bit, competing at that level. I learned plenty.”

The championship took place over the course of five days. Meadows noted the large number of female competitors in this year’s championships, and said the hotel auditorium was packed with onlookers during lifts.

“It was really exciting to watch them lift because they get extremely excited about it,” Meadows recalled.

His own competition didn’t go exactly as he’d hoped. As a powerlifter, his score combines the totals of his best squat, deadlift and bench press.

Squatting first, Meadows said his performance started a bit rough as he was nearly disqualified on his first squat, but managed to recover from an early bobble.

During his deadlift, Meadows gained ground by lifting a personal best of 540 pounds.

Unfortunately, a less-than-stellar performance during the bench press ended up costing him a shot at first place.

“I was just so excited about the whole thing and trying to beat this guy, I just got in my own head a little bit and missed it,” he said.

But Meadows wasn’t sweating over weights the entire time he was abroad. After all, while in England, do what the English do, right?

Having never been to England, he took the opportunity to explore Manchester when not preparing for competition. He explored museums, visited cathedrals, walked the streets and learned just how many different soccer – or football – teams there are in Manchester.

“There was so much to see and do in Manchester,” he said.

The sightseeing was all free too, not even the museums charging entry, he said.

While Meadows may have a proud new feather in his hat for earning second at his first world championship, he doesn’t intend for this chapter in his story to be the last.

“This sport is just amazing. I’ve met some amazing people and it’s taken me places I’ve never thought or imagined I would go. So I’m definitely going to keep doing it for as long as I can,” he said.

Meadows, a personal trainer at Urban Fitness in La Porte, expressed thanks to all those who supported his trip through donations. He said many of his clients at the gym pitched in, and some even wrote letters of encouragement and thanks. He plans on hanging them next to his trophy.

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