Interview With Powerlifter Greg Jurkowski of Gearman Nutrition Interviewed by Mike Westerdal of CriticalBench.com - August 2007
Gearman Deadlifts 800 Pounds In This Video!
Critical Bench: What's up Greg. Thanks for being with us today. I saw your interview with Dondell Blue in last month's Powerlifting USA, now it's your turn to get interviewed. Let's start by giving the Critical Bench readers some background information about your self. Where are you from, age, weight, height, family etc.
Glad to be here. I was born in James Town NY and grew up in Tampa, FL. I'm a national level powerlifter and President of Gearman Nutrition located here in Tampa. I have a beautiful wife Tammy and a seven year old son Andy. I'm 44 years old, 6'4 competing in the 275 pound weight class.
Critical Bench: Greg, that's quite the video of your 800 pound deadlift! When and where did you accomplish this feat? Is the deadlift your favorite lift?
That was two years in December of 2005 in Sarasota, FL. It took every ounce of strength so I must have called the right number. My favorite lift is which ever lift is improving or moving up. Hey if the squat is going up, than that's my favorite.
Critical Bench: Do you have any deadlifting tips you can share with us? How often do you train the deadlift? Do you always pull sumo?
I started out conventional deadlift but had a few lower back injuries. I switched to sumo deadlift to take some of the lower back out of the lift. I only pull conventional for down sets off a block, but during competition I always pull sumo.
As a young man I was advised by Bill Beekley to study the sumo deadlift.
I train the deadlift every week, once a week, three weeks on and than I take a week off to keep the lower back strong and fresh.
I own 6-perfectly tailored Marathon suits, but they're not for sale anymore. It's the best sumo deadlift suit ever.
-Sumo Deadlift Tips:
*Using the proper equipment helps the bottom of the deadlift to get a nice spring. It makes it hard to grab the bar and get into the starting position but than the suit helps you pop up.
*Push the knees way out, keep the back upright as much as possible, keep the bar nice
and tight to the body, and keep your chin up from the beginning of the lift to lockout.
*I study my own deadlift technique using video to critique my technique. If you can tape your lifts, do so.
Critical Bench: When did you first become interested in powerlifting and what got you started in the sport?
20-years ago I came to the gym as a skinny kid that wanted to get big. I heard deadlifts made you thick. I met some powerlifters at the gym that were very willing to help me out, and they threw me into my first meet six months later. Been hooked ever since.
Critical Bench: Greg as a powerlifter you wanted to help other powerlifters break PRs and win competitions by providing high quality nutritional supplements. As the owner of Gearman Nutrition, what supplement is your best seller among strength athletes?
C750 is a true designer creatine with a delivery system. Designer creatine is better than monohydrate version. You don't bloat or cramp with this type of creatine. You can feel a difference in just one week, which I haven't experienced with any other brands.
I'm running a special buy 3 get 1 free. Check it out:
Critical Bench: You've got some serious elite lifters using your supplements. Guys like Beau Moore, Tony Conyers, and Jim Kilts. How important do you think proper supplementation and nutrition plays in performing to a lifter's best ability?
I would say these lifters have worked hard for years to get where they're at. They also have incredible genetics, but whatever level you're at with proper supplementation you can move up and get even stronger. You can always elevate your strength whether you're a beginner or elite lifter everyone wants to improve and supplements can help.
Critical Bench: When I have the attention of a supplement guru like yourself I have to ask, what supplements do you personally take?
I take every item in the product line everyday except for the strength in the bottle which I cycle on and off for contests. I truly stand behind all of the Gearman Products.
Critical Bench: Gearman, I already know the answer but share with the rest of us where you train and with who?
I've trained with a lot of teams through the years but I'm happiest in my current atmosphere. I train at Tommy Fannon's Tampa Barbell here in Tampa. It's a great group of guys, everyone helps each other out. It's very beneficial to have reliable partners that know the most current training methods and proper techniques.
Critical Bench: I agree Greg. Tampa Barbell is the place to be for competitive lifters. Tommy has been very helpful, it's the perfect environment for breeding strength and power and there are plenty of top caliber lifters to learn and train with. What's your workout split routine look like?
Friday: Shoulder Rehab, Abs, Shins, Calves
Saturday: Max Effort Squat, Deadlifts
Tuesday: Max Effort Bench Day
Critical Bench: What are you best gym and competition lifts?
The only lifts that count are contest lifts which are 848 squat, 540 bench, and an 800 pull.
Critical Bench: Amazing lifts! Other than rampaging in the gym, what other hobbies do you enjoy. What do you like to do when you're not working or lifting?
Spending fun time with my seven year old boy. Eat, sleep, train, work and spend time with the family. That's about all I do, but I love what I do.
Critical Bench: What's your stance on RAW vs Gear? Do you prefer one over the other?
I strongly prefer full gear because to me that's part of the game. Finding the brand that works best, having it tailored perfectly. That's the way I was brought into the sport 20-years ago. I have no problem with raw lifting it's just not for me. However I respect everyone that steps onto the platform.
Critical Bench: Greg, how do you feel about the WPO getting replaced at the Arnold?
I respect and appreciate everything Kieran Kidder has done for the sport. I know he dedicated a large part of his life financially and personally to better powerlifting. I wish the WPO nothing but bigger and better things in the future.
Critical Bench: Random question, who's your favorite powerlifter of all time?
There's Any Bolton and Gary Frank with the largest totals. Than there are lifters that have done a lot for the sport like John Inzer and Kieran Kidder. (Can I put those two in the same sentence? haha) My final answer is going to have to be the powerlifter that helped me to enter the sport. He still inspires me and still hits huge numbers after thirty years of competing at the top, Tony Conyers.
Critical Bench: Thanks for the interview Greg and for sharing your expertise with us. Best of luck on and off the platform. Any final words?
Consistency is the key. More power to anyone involved in the sport. Thank God for allowing me to continue to do this. Thank you to my wonderful family for all of their support over the years and for putting up with my training and competitions.