May 2013 - Diane McKinney


  1. Please introduce yourself. Who are you? How old are you? Where were you born? Etc. Give the readers some background about yourself.

    Hi, my name is Diane McKinney. Everyone knows me as "Murph". I was born in Queens, NY in 1959 and moved to the metro Atlanta area in 1966. I love the city, but fell in love with GA 

  2. Where are you located in Georgia and where do you train at?

    I live in Alpharetta and I train at Crossfit North Fulton and occasionally at Crossfit Johns Creek. I have also recently started doing some Olympic lifting at Coffee's Gym in Smyrna. This week I am going to lift at Quest with Josh Rohr. 

  3. What are your hobbies (other than powerlifting)?

    I enjoy cycling on the Greenway or Silver Comet Trail, golfing and hiking. My best buddy is a spoiled little rescue dog, Bailey, and we spend a good amount of our time walking and playing at the local parks. I am also a Crossfitter. I competed in the 2012 Crossfit Games and had the experience of a lifetime! 

  4. If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only have 3 things, what would they be?

    This should be practical, so I would want a constant supply of fresh water, good, healthy food and some good books. 

  5. Who is your role model and why?

    I don't have one particular role model. I admire people who have the confidence to set goals and go for them, and not second guess themselves. Especially the women I have met through Crossfit and Powerlifting. Their drive and tenacity is remarkable. And it amazes that as much training they have going on, they are still gracious to stop and help someone. 

  6. What is something that most people don’t know about you?

    People are usually surprised to hear that I have run two half marathons and ten marathons. I do not have a runners physic, never did, even back in the 90's when I ran what seemed like all the time! And that I have owned four motorcycles. 

  7. If you could ask anyone from history any question, who would it be and what would you ask?

    Not sure about this question…. 

  8. Is there anything about powerlifting you would like to change or wish was different?

    I am new to powerlifting and so far I haven't found anything I would change. I have done two meets and they were both run well, in good facilities and the people who volunteer are kind and helpful.

  9. What is your occupation? Does it interfere with competing or visa versa?

    I am a licensed insurance agent and do customer service work for an Independent Agency in Sandy Springs. I have been working for the company for 26 years. They are all big supporters of my CF and powerlifting and always want to see pictures and hear how I did at my latest meet. My boss is always wanting to arm wrestle with me! I find that after working all day, my energy level is down. Ideally I am at my best mid-morning so that is the downside to working an office job 

  10. How did you get into powerlifting and how many years have you been competing? 

    I sort of stumbled into powerlifting. I am not very coordinated, and during my first couple of years at Crossfit North Fulton I fell down…a lot. I fell in love with deadlifting since it one of the few things I can do without falling over. Brad Trego helped me progressively start adding more and more poundage to my DL. In August 2012, I participated in a deadlift charity event at Crossfit Johns Creek, my first PL event, and pulled 270lbs. I was hooked! 

  11. Are you involved in powerlifting in any way besides as a competitor?

    No 

  12. What are your biggest squat, bench press, deadlift and total numbers?

    Squat 214, BP 126, DL 297 and 622 total. 

  13. What titles, records and achievements have you accumulated during your powerlifting career?

    I currently hold all the GA State records for squat, bench press, DL and total. I hold two American records for DL and total. 

  14. Can you describe your training philosophy and/or a typical training session?

    I still second guess myself and my ability. So going into training and have the “you can do this” mantra. Right now I bench/squat on Mondays and Fridays and DL/bench on Wednesdays. I am trying to amp up my mobility which I tend to neglect since time is usually a factor for me. 

  15. Do you compete equipped (squat suit, bench press shirt & deadlift suit) or unequipped (no suits) or both and what weight class(s) and divisions(s) do you compete in?

    I compete unequipped, Masters 50-54 year old division in the 60kg weight class, I weighed in at 127.5 at my last meet which was a little lower than I would have liked. 

  16. What is your favorite lift, squat or bench press or deadlift or all three and why?

    My favorite lift is the DL. I like it because it seems more natural to me, plus less commands during a meet. I get very nervous and I have missed some good lifts not listening to the commands, grrrrrr!!! 

  17. Who is the most impressive lifter you have competed against?

    I am to new to PL to know just yet. 

  18. Who is your greatest rival?

    My greatest rival is myself since I know that I have not tapped my potential…. yet. 

  19. Who do you think is the greatest lifter of all time?

    I don’t know at this time. 

  20. When was your last competition & how did it go?

    My last meet was Powerlifting for Pink on April 20th. I beat three of the GA State records that I had set in October. Josh Rohr helped coach me through the meet. I missed some lifts not listening to the commands. But the day ended on a high note. I pulled 297, which was a 17lb PR for me!! Thanks Josh!!

  21. Do you have any upcoming competitions? If so, when and where?

    I am hoping my next competition will be the Raw Nationals in July, in Orlando. 

  22. How do you prepare for an upcoming competition? Describe each aspect that you focus on as you prepare for a competition.

    When preparing for a competition, I find that I need a lot of rest/recovery time. Being 54 years old has it's down side, recovery is slow. I like to be super fresh and rested going into any competition. I try to maintain a healthy diet and eat Paleo 80-90% of the time. However the week of the meet I will start adding more carbs since I feel Paleo is not conducive to powerlifting, for me. 

  23. Is there anything you will do differently to prepare for your next competition that is different from your last one?

    Yes, I would practice pausing more on my bench. 

  24. How many competitions do you compete in each year?

    One 

  25. What advice & tips would you give to a powerlifter that is just beginning? If you are just beginning, what advice have you received from other lifters or coaches?

    Some of my friends are starting to think about powerlifting. I tell them follow the program their Coach sets up for them. It may seem like you are not making strides, but then all of a sudden you realize that by adding slow progression of weights, for weeks, makes a huge difference. Consistency is the key.

  26. Has powerlifting had a big impact on your life? If so, how?

    Powerlifting has given me a new confidence and goals. I have always entertained the thought of moving big weight around, and now I am on my way to doing just that! 

  27. Do you stay in touch with lifters you compete against?

    I have met so many great people at the meets and we all stay in touch on Facebook and seeing them at meets. It’s great to hear how people are progressing and training.

  28. What is your #1 or most prestigious meet you ever competed at in your career?

    I have only done local meet so far. 

  29. Do you compete in any other strength sports such as Olympic lifting, strongman, highland games, etc?

    I have competed in local CF events since participating in the CF Games in 2012. I have also competed in Olympic lifting. In November 2011, I competed in the Masters Nationals in Savannah and qualified to go to the Worlds in Greece. I am considering competing in the Masters Nationals in November of this year. Long term goal is to go back to the CF Games in 2014. 

  30. What is your favorite memory from any powerlifting competition or event? Pulling 297.6lbs!!

    Thanks Josh for helping me get that 17lb PR!! 

  31. Do you see yourself still competing in ten years? If so, what are your goals for ten years from now?

    At 54, I am getting a late start as it is. If I can keep my bones healthy and keep training, yes, I hope to be going strong at 64! 

  32. Do you have any funny or interesting powerlifting stories that you can share with us?

    Not yet, but stay tuned….I tend to be on the goofy side…. 

  33. If we're sitting here a year from now celebrating what a great year it's been for you, what would be the reason?


    A 325lb DL!! My goal!! 

  34. Anyone you would like thank for helping you along the way in your Powerlifting career?

    I would like to thank Brag Trego of CF North Fulton. He recognized how much I loved deadlifting and took me serious when I told him I wanted to start lifting heavier. He also set up my programming to include bench and squats. A big thanks to Lara Sturm at CF Johns Creek who encouraged me to enter my first meet and has trained me to learn how to lift in a competition . And to shout out to Dan Sturm, Elizabeth Maze and Josh Rohr who are always helpful and unselfish with their time. 

  35. Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would encourage everyone to step outside their comfort zone from time to time and try something new. PL is a great sport and I admire everyone who puts on a singlet and shows up! 

Thank you for your time and best of luck in your upcoming powerlifting endeavors!


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