Carson setting the bench high

Campbell's Chris Carson sets a state weight lifting record.
Campbell's Chris Carson sets a state weight lifting record.

“I was always stronger than everyone else,” power lifter Chris Carson said. “I just kept pushing to see how far I could go.”

And though his size may seem similar, Carson is not a body builder.

“Power lifting is more of just a sport to see who’s the strongest,” Carson said. “Body building is just to see who looks good. I’m more of a guy that wants to lift a million pounds rather than trying to look good.”

Carson has not reached a million pounds yet, but is well on his way. He has maxed out on the bench press at 775 pounds. That is equivalent to the weight of a full-sized black bear, and when throwing up that much weight, he makes sure he is doing it right.

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“Usually it’s just keeping everything tight, making sure all my pressure points are hitting where they’re supposed to,” Carson said, “and expanding and contracting the muscle.”

The Campbell native has set nine state, two national, and four world records on the bench press; all thanks to God-given strength, a 5,000 calorie a day diet, and a crazy work ethic.

“I’ve heard that I am a different person in the gym than I am outside the gym,” Carson said. “I don’t know, I just flip a switch. As soon as I come in, I turn it on.”

Carson hopes the switch turns up to 800 pounds at his next meet in August; an unimaginable amount for the average Joe, but no sweat to Chris.

“You can’t even get a lot of people that would climb under that much weight,” Carson said. “When they give me the signal that the weight’s loaded, then I go out and lift it. I don’t even want to think about the weight. I just want to lift it.”

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