Thanks for agreeing to the interview Hyrum. Please give us a bit of a brief background. Your current age, weight class, when you started lifting, what got you into the sport?
My name is Hyrum Joseph, I am 16 I compete raw in the u/90s weight division. I started training seriously about 2 years ago. What started me lifting was mainly just the anger and frustration I was experiencing at that point in time, so lifting for me was my escape and from that I developed a passion for the sport.
Why did you choose to pursue powerlifting?
I was never a smaller guy, I was fairly overweight throughout the earliest stages of adolescence and I always had aspirations in bodybuilding but knowing my body type and genetics I used that to my advantage so to speak. So after losing over 20kgs I just focused on becoming a stronger version of myself.
What are your competition PBs? And total PB?
My competition PB in bench is 135kgs, squat 150kgs (needs a lot of work) and dead lift is 230kgs. My best comp total is 510kgs, looking to break the national record total of 515kgs at my next competition.
And what are your training PBs?
My training PB in bench was 140kgs, a 160kg squat and a 230 deadlift also.
What gym do you train at, do you have a coach?
I currently train and work at my family run business my father in law Ryan Lock owns. As I am studying for my certificate 3 and 4 in personal training, I get a lot of part time work and a lot of time to train.
I do not have never had a proper coach as of yet but I would like to mention a fellow mate of mine Mark Hodges. He has given me a lot of positive mentoring and encouragement coming up to nationals and is the only reason I had competed in the first place as he had mentioned I should compete after seeing my numbers.
Please give us a brief description of your training program, methods, reps, sets etc (you don’t have to give too much away!)How often do you train?
My training program consists of the main 3 lifts bench, squat and dead lift and consists of a lot of accessory work. But is subject to change as I am soon acquiring a online coach. I normally train 5-6 days a week seeing as I am always there. My rep ranges stay fairly short ranging from 1-6 reps, i usually keep sets around 3-4 and rest for a good 2-3 minutes.
How would you describe your first nationals experience?
The atmosphere was great as everyone was very supportive and encouraging! I had the opportunity to meet some great and very inspiring lifters, so my experience overall was more than I could’ve asked for.
Were you very nervous and if so, how did you deal with the nerves?
Yes initially I was very nervous more because I didn’t know many people, but as the day went on and I met more and more lifters, I started to feel more comfortable and my nerves settled. As it got closer to the event I knew I had to be focused so I just ended up blocking everything out, did what I had to do, visualised everything I wanted to accomplish that also did a lot for me keeping my nerves under control.
Would you recommend powerlifting to other young athletes?
Yes definitely, as a young athlete myself I’ve found that powerlifting in general is a great way to release that built up anxiety, anger or stress in an safe environment were all that is energy can put to you advantage and where it is totally acceptable!!
What do you think is the best thing about powerlifting and CAPO as a federation?
The main thing that stood out to me to do with the CAPO as a federation is that everyone is so friendly, helpful, extremely encouraging and very approachable and that in sports is hard to find.
What are your short and long term goals in the sport?
In the short term at the moment I would like to just work on slowly bettering my self in ways of the correcting form in certain areas. My long term goals and ambitions at the moment is just to break records in every category I compete in for the next few years then hopefully become I strength coach myself and be able to help others with the same drive and interests as me to become the best they possibly can.
How has powerlifting impacted other areas of your life? Does it affect your schooling?
Powerlifting hasn’t impacted other areas of my life too significantly, my schooling is still okay.
Tell us a little about your recent newspaper interview.
The Finley newspaper article I was featured in as of recent was great and being such a small community news gets around fast brought a lot of positive encouragement towards myself throughout the community which definitely makes me feel good about my achievements.
Is there anything in particular that motivates you?
My dad. My dad, was always a motivating factor in my training just because I was always striving to impress him and conveniently we share the same passion for lifting so we tend to challenge each other keeping me constantly striving for improvement.
I was very impressed with your setup and calm approach to the platform. Do you have any tips for other lifters who struggle to maintain focus?
Thank you Brendan, I appreciate that mate. The only tips I would have for other lifters that struggle to stay focused. Would just to find a place were you feel at ease or to the best of your ability, sit down, clear you head of all self doubt, visualize everything you will be trying to achieve, keep the picture in your head and then when I comes time for you to compete just go for it with an attitude that failure is not an option.
What is your favourite lift?
The Dead lift is my favorite at the moment as it my best lift.
Do you have a lift that you feel is better or worse than others?
I definitely struggle with my squats and it definitely shows because of the lack of technique I have been training with for the last few years. Only just of recent I have tweaked my form so it is of competition standard, so I am excited for the months to come.
Now Hyrum, apart from me who is the best powerlifter you have seen?
Hahaha you’ve put me in a hard position now mate you were all I had in mind! Hahaha but back on track I have a few I look up to and idolize. Men like, Eddy hall and Zahir Khudayarov and a number of others.
If you had to choose one piece of advice to younger lifters coming into the sport, what would it be?
Train hard, be ambitious and never stop striving to be the best you can be!
Thanks again Hyrum, some really good answers there. I look forward to seeing your progress over the next few years, I think you have a very bright future ahead. I wish you the very best with it all.