August
29
2016

Episode 43: Greg Panora

By Chris 0

Greg Panora is one of the best powerlifters of all time in the 242b class.

Here’s his 2000lb+ raw total:

After graduating from college, Greg called Louie Simmons and said, “I want to come visit.”

On the way back to the hotel, Louie asked him to move to Columbus and train full time. Four days later, he got in his car and drove to Westside. He slept in his car, showered at a truck stop and ate stolen cereal bars from an all-night supermarket. He lied to his parents about having an apartment and a roommate. For months.

Yada yada…he became the top 242lbs lifter in the world.

By the time he was 30, Greg had “broken the world record a bunch of times” but still wasn’t making enough money to survive. Then he had a stroke.

He quit powerlifting. He got a job as a personal trainer at a gym, but couldn’t grip his water bottle.  “I was still benching, but nothing crazy – just like 500.” He helped people lose weight, but didn’t love it. One day, his grip simply came back. He deadlifted 605, walked into the manager’s office and quit his job. He moved back to Maine without a plan other than “lift.”

“It actually kinda worked out.”

A friend brought him to a CrossFit class. He tried CrossFit. Then he said, “Listen man. I love this. I don’t want to do it.”

But the introduction blossomed into a relationship, and now Greg has 55 clients training at CrossFit Casco Bay. He walks us through that relationship.

His favorite parts of CrossFit:

“Every powerlifting gym looks just like a CrossFit gym.”

“I never had a job where everybody cares about everybody else this month.”

Greg’s “Reclaiming Real Strength Tour” info can be found here.

“Had CrossFit not been there, I wouldn’t be here right now.”

What can powerlifters learn from CrossFitters? “Stay mobile.”

Big questions:

Now there are new Powerlifting Federations all over the place. Is this good, or bad?

Can CrossFit get powerlifting into the Olympics?

Best answer:

“The best thing we can do right now is ride CrossFit’s coattails.”

Music by Fatal Injection.

Recorded on August 24, 2016.

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