Interview with Push Apparel Sponsored Athlete Cam McKenzie - Australia's #1 IPF Male Powerlifter!
Author: Push Apparel Date Posted:16 July 2017
As our latest member to the tribe we interview Cam McKenzie to get some insight into how he became Australia's #1 IPF Male Powerlifter! Check him out on Instagram @camstrength
PA: How did you get started in Powerlifting and at what age?
CM: I got started in powerlifting at age 19. This was after having competed in bodybuilding where I met some powerlifters who invited me to train with them in my off-season, which quickly turned me into a powerlifter.
PA: Why do you enjoy powerlifting?
CM: The thing I love the most is the challenge. Powerlifting is the ultimate grind and to succeed takes long term commitment and dedication across all aspects of your life and that is something that gives me so much satisfaction after a great comp. The other thing I love most is that it's an individual sport. Regardless of success or failure, everything is yours to own.
PA: Were you strong from the start or did you just realise you had decent strength after training for a while?
CM: I have definitely improved with my years in the sport, but I was somewhat strong in the beginning. Upon meeting my powerlifting friends through bodybuilding, I participated in a crossfire/powerlifting demo at a local gym. After completing a WOD, I jumped in to do some deadlifts with my velcro belt and managed to pull 280kg at 100kg bodyweight and 19 years old. So yes I have been strong from the beginning, but I have improved significantly since then.
PA: Is there any single thing you can put down to your rapid gain in strength? Whether its a personality attribute you have or a particular coach or training program that helped the most?
CM: My dedication to my diet, training and lifestyle. Everything I do on a daily basis is done with my sport in mind. That and my diligence in staying injury free through smart programming (I'm self-coached), spending lots of money on physic, chiro, massage etc and from lots and lots of prehab.
PA: Is diet a major part of your success or can you eat what you feel like?
CM: My diet has definitely been a part of my long term success. I have always been someone to place a large emphasis on eating 'clean', but since meeting Joey Zhingini I have taken on the macros approach which has allowed me to enjoy a wider variety of foods. But I still believe in eating a healthy diet with a wide variety of foods whilst maintaining a healthy body composition.
PA: What are studying at Uni and has those studies helped your powerlifting?
CM: I completed a Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science through Newcastle University and am looking to study a Masters of Physiotherapy and Sydney University. My degree gave me minimal assistance to be honest, there were parts in terms of the periodisation and some physiology, but powerlifting is largely long term commitment and work ethic above anything else.
PA: What are your future goals?
CM: I would love to complete a Masters of Physiotherapy in the immediate future, and long term I want to be an Open Mens World Champion.
PA: Currently, whats your favourite Push Apparel shorts and why?
CM: My favourite are the Original mid thigh shorts because they allow me to do every movement in my powerlifting arsenal. They are light weight, durable, super comfortable and very breathable which is ideal for my long tough training sessions.
PA: In your Instagram you come off as very easy going and you seem to joke around a lot which we think is awesome but do you ever get nervous or anxious around a big and important lift?
CM: Most people don't see it, but I carry massive nerves at every single one of my comps. I manage my nerves a lot better now compared to the last few years where I would rarely sleep the night before a competition and be unable to eat the night before and day of the competition, but the moment i get the most anxious is right before my first squat, but once that is done it's all fun and games for me.
Overall I'm super laid back in all areas of my life except for when I'm competing.
PA: Thanks for your time Cam, keep training hard!