TERRELL TRIBUNE March, 2005 Front Page
The following was taken from the Terrell Tribune Interview
FOUR TIME GUINNESS CERTIFIED WORLD RECORD HOLDER,
FOUR TIME WORLD FITNESS CHAMPION, COACH ROB POWELL
Powell poses with his only training partner, Wolf, a Black German Shepard.
For Coach Rob Powell, being healthy and fit, is a way of life. The 4 Time Guinness World Record Holder and 4 Time World Fitness Champion spends time each day, training, to stay in shape.
Rob Powell is the son of James and Betty Powell. His father is a Rancher in Dry Creek, between Terrell and Quinlan. Powell grew up working cattle on the Ranch with his brothers and sisters.
He attended school earning scholarships for his athletic ability.
He attended Texas Tech University and earned a Bachelors of Arts and Sciences Degree, with a Double Major of History and Physical Education.
''I really enjoy Coaching and Teaching, Powell said.''I enjoy working with young people, and people of every age, helping them to reach their potential''.
Powell was part of the Tyler, Robert E. Lee High School coaching staff, which won the State, Big 5 AAAAA, Football Championship Title. He was also part of the Coaching Staff that won the State 4AAAA title in Track and Field, at Lubbock Estacado, and has worked at other schools across Texas.
But during this time, Powell's competitive instincts made him want to achieve more.
He created and perfected a form of Martial Arts known as ''Nok Beko'' which he now teaches to mostly military personnel and law enforcement.
After learning of the Guinness Record of Fittest Man, held by Joe Decker, Powell felt he not only could break the record, but he could add as much as 25% to the existing event and mark.
Using a 24-Hour mark, as a goal, Powell began his quest to break the record for the first time, on October 27-28, 2001.
He trained for the event for 3 months, choosing October for his attempt because of the cooler weather.
The 11 events consisted of, a 2-mile swim, a 12-mile run, a 12-mile hike, 1,250 push-ups, 1,250 leg lifts, 1,250 jumping jacks, 110 mile cycle, 20-mile row, 20-mile elliptical, 3,250 abdominal crunches, and 300,000 pounds of weights lifted, using upper body only.
During his first World Record event, Powell noticed he was ahead of schedule, so he added distances to the original agreement with Guinness.
''I remember the 20-mile row was torture, we discussed using an IV, for rehydration but decided against it, a rule and standard that remains.''
Powell's first Guinness World Record was, 22 Hours, 11 Minutes and 40 Seconds. ''Guinness took 5 months looking over my claim, making sure each event was performed accurately and correctly, which it was, with quite a bit extra. I had rather performed too much than too little''.
On October 26-27, 2002, Powell broke his own World Record, performing the same events, with a time of 19 Hours, 17 Minutes and 38 Seconds.
Using the same rules as the Guinness World Records, Powell created The World Fitness Championships.
''The WFC is, The Ultimate Extreme Sport and The World's Toughest Sport." Powell said. "Anyone can complete this sport training properly for 3 months and recover in 3 days.
Applicants for the sport come from the worlds of triathletes, adventure racers, elite military, law enforcement, firefighters, doctors, lawyers, coaches, personal trainers, clerks, ect....
To compete each contestant must complete, in 24 Hours, a 2-mile swim, a 10-mile run, a 10-mile hike, 500 pop-ups, 500 hanging leg lifts, 100-mile cycle, 20-mile row, 20-mile elliptical, 3,000 abdominal crunches and 300,000 pounds of weights lifted, using upper body only. Each event must be completed in that order.
The first World Fitness Championships, WFC, was held on October 25-26, 2003. Powell set his 3rd World Record, with a time of 18:36:15.
He accomplished this after he suffered injuries in a hit-and -run bicycling accident, during a 500-mile cycling tour across Texas in June of that year.
''The accident happened at mile 70'', he said.''I had a level 2 concussion, a dislocated shoulder, severely bruised left hip, dislocated right hip, torn abdominal and groin muscles, 3 broken ribs, a bruised spleen, 4 stitches in the scalp, and a severely injured back.''
''I wasn't hurt as badly as I could have been, it could have been much worse at that speed''.
He completed the tour, despite his injuries, doing interviews and spreading the word about fitness, and the WFC.
The next year, on October 30-31, 2004, Halloween Weekend, Powell again broke his own, and 4th World Record, with a Time of 18:15:02, and gained his 4th World Championship Title.
Besides Powell, a total of 380 Applied for WFC competition. Few qualify, most withdraw, some drop out during competition.
Only 3 other men have completed The WFC. In 2003, Merl Wolf, a former Navy Diver completed the events with a time of 23:53:12. In 2004, Roy Wallack completed the WFC with a time of 21:59:02. Dan DeJager also completed the task with a time of 22:36:06.
''The WFC is the toughest event I have ever competed in'' said DeJager. ''From one event to the next I pushed myself beyond what I thought. I could do. So many times I wanted to give up, but I pushed on. Completing the WFC is the greatest accomplishment of my life. It has changed me.''
Powell has made a series of 3 DVDs which explain how to get in shape, and stay fit for life.
''The first DVD is called 'Facts, Opinions and Free Advice on Fitness'. It tells the honest truth about fitness problems, and how to form a lifestyle to change to a better you.''
Powell says, ''even if you never plan to compete at the level of the WFC, you can still get in shape. You can spend as little as 20 minutes, for a beginner, to 45 minutes per day, to get back in shape. This no nonsense approach helps to form a lifestyle to keep you that way''.
It is like Powell says, everyone and everything demands your time. So make 1 hour out of 24 hours in a day, just for you to be healthier and happier.
The 2nd DVD is called ''The WFC''. This DVD answers the question where it all began, with the progressions, and footage from all 4 World Records.
The 3rd DVD is ''How To Train For The WFC''. This DVD answer the most asked worldwide question of how to get in shape for such a competition, or how to obtain maximum fitness.
Recently, Powell has been approached to work with local law enforcement agencies to teach new Martial Arts techniques.
Powell also does motivational speaking and personal training.
Powell has also been approached and asked to consider politics. He hasn't ruled it out, but for now, he wants a quieter life, and to return to Coaching and Teaching.
''Getting in shape is not that tough. All it takes is commitment and patience. There is nothing special about me. If I can work a plus 40 hour work week, like everyone else, not miss a day of work, and train for a world record, then anyone can spend the time necessary to be fit and control health problems, before it is too late''.
While it is debatable about Rob Powell's claim of not being special, his points are well taken.