A world record holder in powerlifting, A.J. Roberts started CrossFit to lose weight and get healthy. Now he has a bigger goal in mind: he wants to compete at the CrossFit Games. Hilary Achauer reports.
There’s a joke at Westside Barbell, the world-renowned powerlifting gym in Columbus, Ohio, about the curse of the Westside Barbell tattoo. The theory goes that once someone gets the Westside Barbell logo inked in their skin, their days at Louie Simmons’ gym are numbered.
In March 2011, A.J. Roberts achieved a world record. Weighing 308 lb., he lifted a total of 2,825 lb. via a 1,140-lb. squat, an 870-lb. bench press and an 815-lb. deadlift. To commemorate his achievement, Roberts got the Westside Barbell logo tattooed across his back.
A year later, after squatting 1,205 lb., the heaviest weight ever squatted by any Westside member, Roberts left the gym, retired from powerlifting and moved to San Diego.
He had achieved his goal of becoming the strongest.
Now he wants to become the fittest.