Jul 30th, 2013
Author: Mike Minium
I’m not sure I can really write anything that hasn’t already been said (either in person or via the blog and FB) regarding Steve’s performance at the 2013 Games. His defining moment will surely be the his deadlift/box jump workout on Day 2, which shot him from 17th place to 9th place overall, which we recapped here (you can see the video of the performance on that blog post, too).
That performance qualified him for Day 3 (only the top 12 athletes got to compete on the final day). Steve did a great job on Day 3 as well.
The morning started with 5 minutes to find a 1-rep-max clean-and-jerk. Steve PR’d and got 210 lbs, good for third place in that workout, and moved up to 7th place overall. His 6th and final workout was a rough chipper involving double-unders, sprints, rope climbs, and the like (you can see the whole workout here). After a slow start with the double-unders, Steve picked up a head of steam and managed to pass a couple athletes on the way to the finish line (which he sprinted across, of course). He finished in 9th place in the workout, and when all was said and done, he finished 7th place overall.
The 7th place finish improved on Steve’s 8th place finish in 2011 (his last trip to the Games), and he did it against far tougher competition. And in terms of local bragging rights, Steve was the top finisher from NorCal (there were 4 athletes competing from NorCal in his Masters bracket, Men 55-59).
All of that stuff is just rankings and points, though. Steve’s performance goes so far beyond the numbers. I remember when Steve couldn’t lift his arms overhead without pain. I remember when Steve came off shoulder surgery, fixing those damaged shoulders of his. I remember when I first started to program for him with the intent of getting him to the Games. It was over a year ago, in April 2012. I’m pretty sure Steve and I were the only ones who thought he had a chance at that point in time. And more than anything, I will always remember his discipline and patience, taking a long-term view and putting in the hard work that would pay off, but not until months later. I will remember his commitment to maximizing everything he could over the 15 months we worked together to get him to the Games. Steve left no stone unturned, completely attacking his weaknesses and bolstering his strengths, rounding himself into shape along the way. If Steve had a workout to do, he did it. In fact, I can count on a single hand the number of workouts he missed, and almost always, that was due to a travel commitment (he travels a lot for his job), and even then, 99% of the time, he’d get his work in on the road.
During this whole process, Steve understood that there are no shortcuts. A lot of the work he did must have been frustrating (although he never said so), because small changes in technique are hard to do, and take time, but they pay big dividends. There’s no substitute for doing it the right way.
Steve earned that 7th place finish (worldwide, mind you). He’s a class act and an inspiration. We’re lucky to have him at CFO. Congratulations, Steve!