Patrick Caldwell Interview
March 2013 - Patrick Caldwell
1. Please introduce yourself. Who are you? How old are you? Where were you born? Etc. Give the readers some background about yourself.
I am Patrick Caldwell, I am 37 and currently I live in Warner Robins Georgia. I was born in Macon, Georgia. I work as a Field Engineer for Georgia Power and I have a wife and four kids.
2. Where are you located in Georgia and where do you train at?
I am located in Warner Robins, Georgia and train at Edge Fitness.
3. What are your hobbies (other than powerlifting)?
Church and spending time with my family. Also, I am an avid college football fan.
4. Are you involved in powerlifting in any way besides as a competitor?
I do my best to educate myself on the principals and techniques of powerlifting and hope to help those around me with their training. I try where I can to introduce people to the world of powerlifting and hopefully dispel some of the stereotypes of what a powerlifter is.
5. Is there anything about powerlifting you would like to change or wish was different?
Not that I can think of.
6. What is something that most people don’t know about you?
The only thing that comes to mind is that I had a min stroke (TMI) at the age of 35.
7. What is your occupation? Does it interfere with competing or visa versa?
I am a Field Engineer with Georgia Power. My boss is pretty supportive and allows me the time to compete.
8. How did you get into powerlifting and how many years have you been competing?
About a year ago I was a typical gym guy, I would work out 4-5 times a week with little to show. Scott Zion saw that I was pretty strong in dead and bench and challenged me to give powerlifting a shot. The training has changed my life and after my first meet I was hooked.9. What are your biggest squat, bench press, deadlift and total numbers?
Squat 450, Bench 405, and Dead 530.
10. What titles, records and achievements have you accumulated during your powerlifting career?
No titles YET! I think my biggest achievement is in my squat. I did squat for almost 20 years due to fear of injury. When I started powerlifting training I struggled with maintaining form on 225.
11. Can you describe your training philosophy and/or a typical training session?
I guess progressive loading with intermittent volume weeks mixed in. Some form of Squat/Bench/Dead 3 times a week with accessory work.
12. 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?
Raw or unequipped at 242.
13. What is your favorite lift, squat or bench press or deadlift or all three and why?
Deadlift by far is my favorite lift. The weight is just sitting there mocking you. Seems to me like deadlifts are the hardest to get the mind around.
14. Who is the most impressive lifter you have competed against?
Ray Koontz. He is heavier than me and equipped but either way I was impressed.
As far as direct completion, Ricky Houser. Ricky and I train in the same gym so there is a lot of pushing each other.
15. Who do you think is the greatest lifter of all time?
Steve Goggins, I may be biased but he gave me the best advice I have gotten as a powerlifter. “Don’t Quit”
16. When was your last competition & how did it go?
USAPL Georgia & Southern States BP & Powerlifting Championships in October 2012. Nerves got me and I got technical on squats. However my others lifts were strong and it set the fire.
17. Do you have any upcoming competitions? If so, when and where?
Battle On The Border March 23, 2013, Powerlifting for The Pink April 20, 2013 and potentially the USAPL Georgia Spring Open April 6, 2013.
18. How do you prepare for an upcoming competition? Describe each aspect that you focus on as you prepare for a competition.
Focusing on the fundamentals and filling in the gaps were I am weak. For instance, if my deadlift slows or stalls at my knees I may add in more pause deadlifts. Additionally, on PR days I try to put myself in the meet and invasion only positive results on each lift.
19. Is there anything you will do differently to prepare for your next competition that is different from your last one?
Last meet I tried to cut to 220 and I think I affected my strength. I decided to go at 242 about a week out, but I do not think I recovered. Additionally, I will have someone act as the judge and give me the commands in the last three weeks.
20. How many competitions do you compete in each year?
I will attempt 4-5 depending on my health and schedule.
21. Who is your greatest competitor/rival and why?
Ricky Houser. Ricky and I train at the same gym we so we naturally push each other and I think we both have that drive to do more than the other guy,
22. 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?
Focus on form first. Run a Shieko type program with a lot of volume. Set realistic goals and don’t be afraid to reach out to more experience lifters.
23. How has powerlifting changed your life?
I went from a guy that was in moderate shape that worked out to the guy that has serious goals and trains to reach them. The training and training mentality has seeped into just about everything I do.
24. Do you stay in touch with lifters you compete against?
Some in person and I follow many through Facebook.
25. What is your #1 or most prestigious meet you ever competed at in your career?
I have only competed once, but I think that one will be the most impactful. I got a technical on squats and could have called it a day. I was encouraged to continue for the experience and I think that set the foundation, my love of powerlifting and my overall training mindset.
26. Do you compete in any other strength sports such as Olympic lifting, strongman, highland games, etc?
No. I only have time to train for one.
27. What is your favorite memory from any powerlifting competition or event?
Seeing the Special Olympians compete. Those guys and girls just impress me.
28. Do you see yourself still competing in ten years? If so, what are your goals for ten years from now?
Yes as long as my body holds out I hope to be a very very old man pulling heavy weight.
29. Do you have any funny or interesting powerlifting stories that you can share with us?
While training, wear baggy shorts or shorts with some give. Else when you hit a deep squat you will split your shorts and be left a little exposed. Personal Experience.
30. Anyone you would like thank for helping you along the way in your Powerlifting career?
Scott Zion and Ricky Houser.
31. Is there anything else you would like to add?
I can’t think the USAPL enough. A lot of people I talk to think a powerlifting meet is a bunch of guys trash talking and putting everyone down. I find the meets of the USAPL to be more like 100 or so of your best friends cheering you on.
I would also like to think my wife Sara. Her support and motivation is a huge reason why I am able to train and compete.
Thank you for your time and best of luck in your upcoming powerlifting endeavors!