Sam Downey Interview
October 2013 - Sam Downey
1. Please introduce yourself. Who are you? How old are you? Where were you born? Etc. Give the readers some background about yourself.
My name is Sam Downey I am 18 years old and I was born in Roswell, Ga. I go to Forsyth Central High School and I am a senior. I like to work on cars, go fishing, lift weights, and hang out with friends.
2. Where are you located in Georgia and where do you train at?
I am located in Cumming, Ga and we train at my coaches house.
3. What are your hobbies (other than powerlifting)?
I like to fish, work on cars, go rafting, and camping.
4. If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only have 3 things, what would they be?
I would have a hat, some shades, and a lawn chair.
5. Who is your role model and why?
My role model is Shay Hollis, a kid that goes to my school. And why, he just seems like hes got it all figured out.
6. What is something that most people don’t know about you?
One thing that most people don't know about me is that I like to read.
7. If you could ask anyone from history any question, who would it be and what would you ask?
I would ask Harry Truman how hard it was to drop the atomic bomb.
8. Is there anything about powerlifting you would like to change or wish was different?
Not really, I think it's pretty good the way it is.
9. What is your occupation? Does it interfere with competing or visa versa?
I work for Forsyth County Parks and Rec. and the only thing it interferes with is practices but luckily I have weight training at school to make up for it.
10. How did you get into powerlifting and how many years have you been competing?
My friend Jacob Keesee asked me if I wanted to join a team he and his Dad were making. I have been competing for 2 years.
11. Are you involved in powerlifting in any way besides as a competitor?
Nothing really besides lifting at school.
12. What are your biggest squat, bench press, deadlift and total numbers?
Squat is 524, Bench is 325, and deadlift is 451. The total is 1,300lbs.
13. What titles, records and achievements have you accumulated during your powerlifting career?
I hold American and state records in squat. Bench I hold a state record. Deadlift I have a state record.
14. Can you describe your training philosophy and/or a typical training session?
We usually do heavy lifting all the way up until we get close to the meet and then we have one day where we just use light weight and go through the motions. And our philosophy is go big or go home.
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 in the raw unequipped division in the 220 weight class.
16. What is your favorite lift, squat or bench press or deadlift or all three and why?
My favorite lifts are squat and bench because they come easiest to me.
17. Who is the most impressive lifter you have competed against?
My teammate Jake Gorcyzca is because its pretty close between him and I.
18. Who is your greatest rival?
Jake Gorcyzca because it is always close lifts between him and I.
19. Who do you think is the greatest lifter of all time?
Jacob Keesee20. When was your last competition & how did it go?
My last competition was Nationals in Orlando and I did good on everything except squat.
21. Do you have any upcoming competitions? If so, when and where?
I am going to the Southeast Regional Powerlifting Championships in Lithia springs on October 5th.
22. How do you prepare for an upcoming competition? Describe each aspect that you focus on as you prepare for a competition.
We have one day close to the meet where we just go through lifts and commands to help get our minds set. I always have to focus on getting low enough on my squat.
23. Is there anything you will do differently to prepare for your next competition that is different from your last one?
Not really besides getting low enough for my squat attempts.
24. How many competitions do you compete in each year?
Around 4-6 each year.
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?
I would tell them to listen to their coach and pay attention to the rules for good lifts.
26. Has powerlifting had a big impact on your life? If so, how?
Yes it has, I believe it has made me a much better and stronger person both physically and mentally. All the people that you meet going to competitions have great advice and have things that you can learn from them.
27. Do you stay in touch with lifters you compete against?
Nobody except for my teammates.
28. What is your #1 or most prestigious meet you ever competed at in your career?
Nationals in Orlando, Fl
29. Do you compete in any other strength sports such as Olympic lifting, strongman, highland games, etc?
30. What is your favorite memory from any powerlifting competition or event?
Seeing a guy from our first meet deadlift 700lbs.
31. Do you see yourself still competing in ten years? If so, what are your goals for ten years from now?
Maybe, and my goals would be to have over a 2,000lbs total.
32. Do you have any funny or interesting powerlifting stories that you can share with us?
At my first meet I had popped a blood vessel in my eye during squats and my teammates had noticed it but didn't say anything about it until we were about to start deadlifts. They asked me if my eye hurt and I said no and asked why and they said it was really bloodshot. Kind of shook me up but I finished the meet and didn't think anything else about it. Until we got back to school and I got to show everyone my eye.
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?
Setting a world record for squat.
34. Anyone you would like thank for helping you along the way in your Powerlifting career?
I would definitely thank the Keesee family for opening up their home to us. Jake Gorcyzca for making me push myself harder. And the support of my family and my fellow teammates and their families.
35. Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thank you for your time and best of luck in your upcoming powerlifting endeavors!