Amazing Powerlifter Amanda Harris Published With Permission From The Arnold Sports Festival Newsletter Posted July 24, 2006
The world's most amazing world powerlifting champion, Amanda Harris, turned 15 years old on May 31 and she remains today the world's most incredible wonder in the world of powerlifting. Trained by her father, Dr. Mark Harris, a nationally recognized strength coach, Amanda has established her international presence as the leader in youth powerlifting. Amanda leads the life you would expect of any 15-year-old. She has young friends of her same age and none of her girlfriends are athletes. However, she describes them as very supportive. She speaks frequently with her best friend, Kimmie, and her Louisiana powerlifting friend, Julian Dunn. Amanda says her parents are here to guide her but the desire and ambition are totally her own.
A day in the life of Amanda Harris sounds fun, delicious and exciting. She is a home schooled and living in suburban Houston with her Mom and Dad. Her older brother Beau, a former powerlifter himself, is now a full time college student at nearby Sam Houston University.
Amanda reads twice a day, studies human anatomy in the morning followed by math, then lunch and followed by language arts. Each day she trains in home's air conditioned garage converted into the family gym where she is coached by her father. She typically sleeps 9 hrs. a night and sometimes as most youngsters her age, up to 12 hours on the weekend.
On April 7, 2006, Amanda set the Squat World Record for competitor's age 13-15 years when she competed against 6 to 7 other athletes her age. As a 14 year old competitor at the weight of 110 lbs. (just two lbs. more than the 108 lbs. she weighed at the Arnold in March of 2006) at the American Powerlifting Federation's meet in Texas she not only set a squat record at 255 lbs. but also a bench of 155.75 lbs. and a deadlift record of 255 lbs. Amanda's equal poundage in the squat and deadlift is a significant indicator of her well balanced physique. Her total poundage for the event was 300 kilos.
What is remarkable beyond the total poundage that she lifts is her physical resiliency. Just weeks prior to the APF event, she took the Best Lifter Award and 1st place in Austin on March 25 at the US Power Lifting Federation event.
Amanda says the community's reaction to her incredible success is very complimentary. "The judges are very nice," her father Mark adds, "The judges are blown away and the crowd can't seem to believe it. A lot of her core strength adds to her success. When my children were young and able to understand the difference between right and wrong I never spanked them. I made them do push-ups and flutter kicks. On a bad day Amanda could have done 200-300 push-ups a day," Harris added."I did some work with the WWE and my son was with me. We were at the opening of the Planet Hollywood at the Mall of America in Minneapolis. Beau was only 9 or 10 at the time, and we were eating dinner with Curt Henning of the WWE. Beau and Curt began throwing French fries back and forth and it got out of hand. With that, I said to Beau get down and beat your face, meaning do push-ups. Curt picked him up and made him do his push-ups on top of the table at the opening of the Planet Hollywood. Beau got a standing ovation from the entire restaurant. It was hilarious. As a father, this discipline technique always allowed me to turn a negative into a positive."
Mark Harris says Amanda's resilience is attributable to sound nutrition and rest. In the morning Amanda's consumption is based on the fact that the body is in a cleansing phase. She eats only fresh fruits. One day is acidic fruits; the next day is neutral fruits. The following day would be pears, apples, and bananas. This is so the enzymatic activity within the digestive system is appropriate. From 10 a.m. to 12 noon Amanda will add organic raw seeds and nuts including almonds, cashews, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and Brazil nuts. During this loading phase of the early afternoon she may have brown rice, or a yam. At three p.m. she has a high quality protein shake. Then she trains. In the evening Amanda will have 6 ounces of buffalo, salmon, chicken breasts or red meat, organic whenever possible. She also will have vegetables including a salad and broccoli, black eye peas, slow releasing carbs.She is getting 2,500 to 3,500 calories per day.
Amanda also uses a very special product that she has now been taking since March, 2006. The product is called Vibe a high grade vitamin product. Many typical vitamins may have an absorption rate of 20-40%. The Vibe product has an absorption rate of up to 90% as the company Eneva uses frequency to breakdown the product molecules to enhance absorption. Mark Harris adds, ³We would definitely recommend this to anyone.²
Amanda adds she is looking to try to get into the Olympics however she wants to wait for powerlifting to be recognized as an Olympic sport. Right now Amanda is a two-time World Champion within the AAU and sees herself as advancing the sport of Powerlifting. Interestingly Amanda's father was a 5 time National and World Champion and a 5 time AAU World Champion. Two weeks ago in Las Vegas at the APF Senior Nationals, Amanda became the 1st youngster to ever compete and win this event. Just a few days ago she set a state record in a single bench when she lifted 138 lbs, a single lift record for age and weight category.
On July 15 Amanda will compete in the Oklahoma City AAU Nationals. July 22 she will lift at the International Powerlifting Championships in York, PA; on July 29 she will compete at the AAU Jr. Nationals in Hampton, VA, and on August 5 in Dallas Amanda will compete at the World Association of Bench Press and Deadlifters (WABDL).
By the end of 2006, Amanda will have won 5 World Powerlifting Championships. She will be the 1st powerlifter to ever achieve this. October 2006 will be the AAU World Championships, November will be World Powerlifting Organizations/World Powerlifting Congress World Championships, and December will bring two events, the World Powerlifting Association Championships in Maine, and the WBDAL World Championships in Las Vegas. For more information about Amanda go to: http://www.myspace.com/worldpowerchamp
Amanda Harris is an inspiration to any athlete and a true example of what perseverance, vision, and discipline can achieve. Amanda will be back as a welcome super star lifter at the Arnold Sports Festival 2007, March 2, 3 & 4 in Columbus, Ohio. Watch worldwide for Amanda's career and future powerlifting success.