A World champion weightlifter

December 11, 2012 10:24 pm

76-year-old Larry Vincent holds two of the four trophies he brought home from the World Association of Benchers and Deadlifters world championships. Center is the plaque indicating Vincent’s induction into the WABDL Hall of Fame. The Pilot/Jef Hatch
76-year-old Larry Vincent holds two of the four trophies he brought home from the World Association of Benchers and Deadlifters world championships. Center is the plaque indicating Vincent’s induction into the WABDL Hall of Fame. The Pilot/Jef Hatch
At 76 years old, Larry Vincent refuses to grow old; or, at least he refuses to allow his muscles the chance to atrophy and wither away as he progresses through his golden age. 

“If I didn’t deadlift, I’d be a cripple,” Vincent explained. “I have had back problems most of my life and weightlifting keeps me healthy.”

Weightlifting has not only kept him healthy, it has also made him a champion, made him a world record holder and got him inducted into the World Association of Benchers and Deadlifters (WABDL) Hall of Fame.

In November, Vincent competed at the WABDL world championships in Las Vegas in the 132-pound weight class for ages 75-80 in both bench press and deadlift and was crowned champion in both. 

Vincent benched 239 pounds and deadlifted 348 pounds to claim the title in his weight class and age bracket.

The lifts also procured him the title Best Lifter for all members of his age group. 

“I was the only one in my weight class at my age, but there were probably 18  or 19 total lifters in my age group that competed for the Best Lifter title,” Vincent said. “There is a formula they use to decide the winner based on weight to strength ratio.”

The winning lifts also set the new world record for Vincent’s age group which had been held by Vincent since he last competed in a world competition.

“I’ve broken records 26 times,” Vincent explained. “Only two of them weren’t held by me.”

Vincent was also named to the WABDL Hall of Fame. The group cited his eight world titles and his world records as justification for naming him to the hall.

“I don’t’ do this for the honors,” Vincent said. “You have to have goals in life and this gives me goals. I also get a lot of reinforcement at meets. People tell me that I inspire them.

“It’s nice to be best in the world at something.”

While the world championships happen just once a year in Las Vegas, Vincent plans to compete at two competitions each year and he doesn’t show any signs of slowing down either. When asked by his doctor when he would stop lifting, Vincent told him that maybe he’d stop at eighty.

“You don’t get a chance to look back and wish you’d done more,” he said.