Best Lifter spotlight from the USPC X-Factor Open on November 6, 2021.
Top Men's Raw Wilks 2.0...
Name, age & how long have you been Powerlifting?
I'm Jamaal Grimes, 40-years-old and I have been powerlifting now for over 6 years.
Best lifts in competition?
Best lifts are squat (wraps) 235kg/518lbs, squat (sleeves) 227.5kg/501lbs, bench 140kg/308lbs and deadlift 312.5kg/688lbs.
Athletic background? What you did before powerlifting?
Track and field all through middle school and high school-100m, 200m, 400m, relays, long jump, triple jump, shot put and discus. Dibbled and dabbled in different martial arts from Muay Thai to Kyokushin.
I never knew how strong I was until I did CrossFit while I was deployed in Iraq. My very first max out deadlift was 4 plates and it was then that I became more curious about how far I could push myself. Once I started competing, I started learning more about how to train and perform in the sport, and in turn, it taught me things about myself (discipline, intrinsic motivation and smart(er) goal setting and planning).
Tell me something about your gym/team.
I'm typically a lone wolf when training. I had a shed built in my backyard where I do most of my training. It's called The Shinka Shack.
Something most people you train with (or those who follow you if you train alone) don't know about you?
Haha! I proposed to my wife at a non-sanctioned powerlifting meet held at Yokota AFB in Japan. Later that year, we flew from Japan to the states to get married and two days after our wedding we both competed in our first sanctioned powerlifting meet! I know that our bond is very unconventional, but you can't spell romantic without 'iron'.
Biggest inspiration in the sport?
I have several inspirations-Ed Coan, Steve Goggins, Lamar Gant, Taylor Atwood, Ray Williams, Jamal Browner.
What's your favorite lift?
Hands down the deadlift
Least favorite lift?
Biggest challenge in your training?
I became a new father in 2020 and it has definitely changed my life and the way I train. It's not just about me anymore.
Ideal training atmosphere? Focused and dialed in or noisy and high energy?
Mostly focused and dialed in.
Training plan. Do your own programming or have a coach?
I usually do my own programming, but I started the Juggernaut AI app over the summer to prepare for my most recent meet.
Social media. Positives and negatives
Social media is a great tool for connecting with like-minded people in the sport and some of our favorite lifters. It can be a negative when either mindless scrolling becomes way too time consuming or opinions are enforced without people having an open mind to one another's opinion.
Diet you follow? Supplements?
I do not follow a specific diet. I eat to live and perform, which consists of home prepped meals, tracking portions, and occasional eating out. The only supplements that I use are tea (caffeine), pre-workout sparingly, magnesium and fish oil.
Biggest accomplishment in your powerlifting career?
Biggest accomplishment would have to be winning a national title and earning a silver medal at an international competition all in the same year.
What's one of your non-powerlifting goals?
Business-to open a gym.
Finally is there anyone you would like to acknowledge or give a shout out to (team, coach, spouse, sponsors)?
I would like to thank my wife for always being my biggest cheerleader and support system. Also, there are way too many names but I'd like to thank and continue to uplift all of the lifters, coaches and gym owners that I've met through the sport who continue to support me as well. Last, but not least, thank you to the USPC!