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Interview with Mike Pockoski (4/10/11)

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    Posted: 8/24/11 at 7:52am

Interview with Mike Pockoski (4/10/11)


Here is Mike Pockoski.  I had the pleasure of competing with him a couple of times when he was an Am.  Real good guy, fun and someone you enjoy throwing with.  One of the new hot pro throwers, to see him throw a caber is really something.  The speed and explosion he has is just amazing.  You need to go someplace to see this guy throw.  So enjoy and let me know what you think.  Oh, the blank spaces are the charts and photos Mike included in his response and my blog does not support them, sorry.





How old are you?

 

33

 

Where were you born?

 

Dayville, Ct.  Growing up in New England gave me the perfect childhood.  I had lakes and rivers to play in literally minutes from my house.  I could ride my bike to the ocean as often as I wanted, I could be skiing in under and hour during the winter, Im really thankful for such an adventurous upbringing.

 

Where do you live now?

Troutman, NC. 

 

How did you end up there?

Came here for my job.  Went to Vegas to chase the discus and the Olympics, met my wonderful wife, and was really pretty happy living there.  After a while, I decided it was time to move my career forward to I took a job I always knew Id take (with my old roommate) and moved back east.

 

 

What do you drive?

Before I had a daughter, I rode a Honda VTX 1800.  I always wanted a motorcycle ever since I was a kid.  When I met Mindy, she told me to just go buy it and wed pay it offman, I love that woman.  I rode it to work every day in the desert. 

 

Now, I drive an Infiniti FX35.  The bike stays in the garage most of the time.

 

Do you follow the speed limit?

 

Well, Im no speed demon but I dont get passed too often either. 

 

 

You ever change your own oil?

 Mindy usually changes it!  Seriously, she loves all that stuff and Im happy to let her do it!  She rebuilt the carbs on our old boat, changed the alternator of my old truck in the parking lot of my officeman, I love that woman.

 

What size shoe do you wear?

 15

 

Have you gone green?

Not enough at home.  At work, I got my LEED accreditation (a green-building thing) and spend a lot of time trying to educate engineers and architects about green construction.

 

What do you think about global warming?

Its the real deal, baby but unfortunately I believe theres little we can do about it.  That shouldnt stop you from trying, but I believe the root of the problem is overpopulation and theres not a lot you can do about that.  Google population explosion and read a bit about it cant argue with the facts that not long ago (in geologic time) there was a relatively stable and slow growing population on the planet, and then in the blink of an eye (in geologic time) the population went from millions to billions.  No system can endure that type of change without collateral effect.  It is warming?  Is it cooling?  Does it matter, were consuming faster than can be replenished and its really hard to argue against that.

 

Lets say you eat a cheeseburger once a week, every week of the year.  And then all of a sudden, you start eating a cheeseburger every ten minutes, and you continue that for the entire year.  Think thatll have an impact on your body-ecosystem?  (half the people reading this are thinking, Mmmm, cheeseburger ever ten minutes)

 

The waste trail is huge.  Think about all the garbage you throw away in a week, and consider all the effort it took to make that garbage (packaging, transportation, heating, cooling, billing, advertising, all the energy that goes into turning the lights on in those offices, etc), now multiply that by everyone you know, and everyone they know, etc.it just blows up exponentially.  Thats a lot of garbage, energystuff.  Consider that it takes 50,000 to 70,000 years for plastic to decayman, it just adds up and chokes the planet.  Google some images for gyre and youll see where a lot of it goes  It just blows my mind when people say its a myth.

 

< stepping down from soap box now >



Do you recycle?

Yep, but not enough at home. 

 

 

What do you do for a living?

 I work for a small company that invents technology for ground improvement (to support building foundations, retaining walls, bridges, tanks, etc).  Its really great to work for a young and aggressive engineering group most consulting groups are afraid to spend money or take risks.  I hated that work when I was in it.  Most engineers in my field (geotechnical) are crybabies afraid to be sued.  We work at the other end of the food chain, where you only get a paycheck if you push limits and are aggressive, so I really enjoy the challenge.  My title is lead engineer, but Im basically an area sales manager for a bunch of sales guys who sell the systems all over the world. Its a lot of fun its really competitive and fast paceda lot of corollaries to sports.  You feel the same emotions with wins and losses.  My territory is the eastern US and Canada, so I travel a lotand I work way too many hours 50 hrs is a short week, 60 is pretty typical. Its hard to fit it all in

 

How did you get into that?

I wanted to be a builder like my grandfather, and I grew up swinging a hammerbut he died too young and broken, so I decided engineering would be the closest thing without the body abuse.  Good thing highland games dont have any wear and tear.... 

 

 

Tell us about your education?

 Got my BS from WPI in Worcester, MA.  Small DIII tech school with hard classes and barely any sports.  Got my MS from Virginia Tech.

 

As a kid growing up, what was your first job?

I worked with the school departments maintenance crew.  Awesome job I mowed lawns all day, then washed and waxed the tractors every time we used them, knocked off about 1 and sat in the break room and played cards for the rest of the day.  These guys were professionals at slacking off.  Five bucks an hour went so far back then!  Every other job until I started my career involved swinging a hammer and those were some of the best jobs Ive ever had.  I think when I retire from this engineering gig Ill start a custom home-building business or build furniture like Norm Abram. 

 

 

When you grew up as a kid, what sports did you play?

I did a lot of non-team stuff growing up.  I was at the beach or a lake every day in the summers, so I did a ton of snorkeling and diving.  I got way into cycling and would spend all day riding as far as I could stand.  I raced BMX for a while, played baseball, soccer, & football up until high school.  Then only track. 

 

Did you throw in high school and if so what did you throw?

Shot put and disc. 

 

When did you develop your glad hands?

I dont think you cant develop skill like that. Its like Maybelline maybe I was been born with it.

 

Tell us about throwing in college.

My coach (Bill Cotter) wasnt a famous throws coach, he wasnt educated in sports physiology, and he wasnt up to speed on all the current training techniques and gadgetry we discuss on NASGA.  But he was a guy who loved and lived the sport.  He spent extreme effort balancing and trading energy with his job (also an engineer) and his own training for my coaching and Ill always be thankful for that.  We trained and travelled to meets for years and had a great time doing it.  He taught me to party like a rockstar, drink like an alcoholic, and to LOVE to throw.  Brian Oldfield (obviously one of our heroes) said that was the best thing Bill every taught me to love to throw.  We lifted at Bay State Gym in Worcester.  When I started, it was a real gym where youd see 500 on a bench any day of the week and guys would bring their own bars with them to come in and O-lift on the platforms.  At Bay State, I soon realized how real strength athletes trained and it set me straight.  He dragged me around New England to get me in front of every throws coach he could to get as many perspectives on how to make me throw farther.  Ended up throwing farther than any weakling DIII engineer every should.  Bill was probably the biggest influence in how I live my life cant say enough good about the guy.  He was a great coach, a great personal mentor, and is a great friend. 

 

What was your first Highland Game and when was that?

Bill and I did a highland games in Rhode Island sometime soon after I came back from graduate school.  I think I wore a plaid tablecloth for a kilt and couldnt even pick the caber.  At the time, I didnt even know organized highland games existed.  This game was far from organized I dont think there were bands or even a festival.  Just a bunch of local track and field throwers getting together to throw stuff in a field.  I thought (and still do) that it was what the highland games are all about.  Just a bunch of people getting together to have a great time throwing stuff.  I cant remember it well, but I think we all got drunk together, headed to the beach and partied all night.  Great first highland experience.

 

Who was at that game?

No clue.  Honestly, it was long ago and its a blur but I remember it was a blast.

 

 

What made you decide to try and compete at a game?

Mindy and I were training for the trials, and our coach (John Powell) said we needed more time competing and more at bats throwing under pressure.  I think he called Coach Mac, who called Steve Conway and asked to get us into Pleasanton (the next game on the schedule 2 weeks away).  Steve said we needed marks to get in, and the next game was up in Jackson hole.  Mindy and drove to Jackson hole from Vegas (thats another story) and threw up there in our first organized game.  Brent Abbot beat me that day.  I threw the sheaf over the moon and thought I would be great at that event. (Boy, was I wrong.)  We competed at Pleasanton the week after and I was hooked.  That was the year Sandford won.  All these greats were walking around but I had no clue who they were or why they were great.  It wasnt until months later as I started to learn more about our sport did I realize I was watching the best athletes in our sport.

 

What is your favorite event?

The favorites switch too often...  Theres nothing like catching a stone and smacking the snot out of it.  That full body wave that starts at your toes and finishes through your fingertips.  Man, theres nothing better.  Im not the best stone thrower out there but when the stars align and Im hitting it, theres nothing better.

 

What is a common mistake you see people make in that event?

 Most young throwers rush the throw.  They end up trying to hit the stone as soon as the left foot touches down, and you end up with a fade-away jump shot where you never get over the trig.  Youre afraid to foul, so you want to stay back from the trig but the long throws come from waiting long, being patient, getting the body wt to shift and transfer onto the left before hitting the shot.  As John would say, simple but not easy.

 

Who were the first people to influence and coach you in the sport?

Ryan was always willing to give really good advice, even when I was an AM and especially as I was turning pro.  Ken L. would give great advice too.    But thats one of the best things about this sport the greats like Ryan are always willing to help out the newbies.

 

Talk some about throwing games as an amateur, what games you did and where.

I knew Id turn pro when I was ready, and I caught on quickly that you only get into pro games if you travel a lot as an amateurso we racked up a lot of debt on the credit cards flying around the country throwing.  Loon Mt was one of my favorites, because my family got to come see us throw.  Pleasanton was always our superbowl game thats the one wed train to peak at every year.  But I loved all of themFresno under the big trees, Tucson with its hard ground, the Claw with its dirt and platforms (still one of my favorites love the Kettle!).  My first southeast game meeting Kay was great fun.  I always loved the small ren-fest games too Frank Stasa always did such a great job announcing that those crowds would gather and cheer all day great fun. 

 

 

What were your favorite amateur games?

Theres no better experience than our trip to Scotland for the USA-Scotland battle.  I got to learn how much fun Dan, Bert, and Chris really are seeing Scotland with that crew was one of the best trips of my life.  Ill always hold Pleasanton special I just love that game, as an AM and as a pro.

 

 

Talk about some of the pro games you have done and your favorites.

Estes Park has a great crowd -  they sit really close and the announcer keeps them in their seats all day.  Portland is one of the best too.  They LOVE the caber there, and everyone comes to see it in the center of the track.  The stadium and field around you is filled, and they stop everything and watch as you run the caber.  Just awesome.  P-town is great like that too, though theres a lot going on at the track so theres not as much focus. 

 

 

We used to have a ritual of measuring of the heads.  In the pro class right now, who do you think has the largest physical dome?

 You know, McKim has a huge head but the rest of him is so large under it, you really cant tell.  You put Dans head on Sorins body (got you, Bert) and youve got a bobblehead.  Valenti also has a monster melon. Again, he distracts you from the size of his head with his superpower-ability to grow a beard.  You can actually hear that thing grow when you sit next to him, sounds like sandpaper.  Hell be clean shaven in the AM and by the time we turn the caber, hes looking for those little rubber bands so he can put pig-tails in it.  You get so distracted trying to figure out if you are going crazy (wasnt he just wearing the 5 Oclock shadow look at breakfast?), you forget to make fun of his huge head.

 

Who do you enjoy competing with and why?

Last year, Dan, Sean and I had some really tight battles toward the end of the year and that was really exciting.  These guys are always on their game and its really tight scoring every event counts and its just great fun to compete. But everyone is a clown out there KO, Valenti, Chafin, Brockthey all make you laugh all day. 

 

 

Let me mention some names and you comment on them;

Chafin;  love me some Chafin.  Always has some good snacks in his bag too!.  Chris has really put his game together in the past couple of years.  Great fun to throw with him.

 

Sorin;  I miss Bert hes a great guy and a great athlete.  Really hope to see him out here again.  Always fun to throw with Bert, and the guy is such a gamer you cant leave the door open anywhere or hell sneak in.

 

Zolk;  Us New England guys stick togetherlove me some Zolk too.  Polish Power!  Ive been throwing on and off with Mike since college.  Mike is a gifted athlete and a great competitor.  He comes from a well respected New England throwing pedigree, and instead of getting in line and marching to the drum, he went his own way and made it work for him.  Ive got lots of respect for that.

 

C Smith;  Hes either really freaking smart or hes really good at Google.  (I think both.)  Im always impressed with his huge pulls and power, and I think hes got some of the best athleticism of anyone Ive met, but Im most impressed with his knowledge of stuff.  I think he should be working at NASA building rockets.

 

McKim;  Have you looked at this kids log?  Seriously strong.  It just boggles my mind how much weight he moves every weekthe ability to maintain such a high amount of weight is just amazing.  I have serious respect for Dan on many levels.  His commitment to Christ, his relationship with his family, his work ethic.  Dan won titles last year and its a ton of hard work that got him there.  Much respect

 

Betz;  Smart training, great athlete, hard work, great focus during competition no wonder this guy was a world champion.  I really enjoy competing with Sean.  Hes a of fun to hang out with and is just a great all around guy.

 

Overfelt; Great thrower, and a ton of fun to be with on the field.  But the thing that comes to mind the most about KO is that hes just one of the most genuine, nicest guys youll ever meet.  Hes the first to get up and offer a lady his chair or hold the door.  KO gave me a lot of good advice when I was starting out as a pro I always appreciated those tips.

 

Brock;  When I need to screw my head on right when I comes to technique, I watch video of Larry.  I really identify with his style because we have similar concepts about how to throw (i.e. only need to be as strong as you need to be to have the right technique to make it go far).  Gifted athlete, great champion, and even better family man.  Hes always got pictures of his kids within arms reach.  I respect this guy a lot.

 

Valenti;  Ding, ding, ding!!!  Is there anything more to say?   J  Ton of fun to be around, gorilla strong, and keeps getting better.

 

Talk about some of the throws, games and moments you are most proud of.

 

Im most proud of Mindy breaking the wob record.  That year was a really terrible year for us financially, emotionally, physicallyperfect storm of crap all piled into one year.  And she put her head down, plowed through it all, focused and trained hard, and won every event that year.  The wob was one record that she really wanted.  Gary Ellis (takes photos at Pleasanton, check him out) gave us a photo he snapped of her as the weight hit the ground.  On her face and in her fingertips I see all the pain and stress of that year and all the effort it took to overcome wrapped into victory.  She worked really hard and put it all together, and Im most proud to be a part of that. 



Is there a loss that bothers you in particular?

 

Its hard to be bothered by a loss when you respect your competitors so much.  You always want to do better, but when you try hard and they were more prepared, all you can do is congratulate them on well deserved victory, go home, and work harder.  I really wanted to win Pleasanton last year, I think Dan, Sean and I were all within half a point.  I really wanted to win the Celtic and be invited to Worlds, I think I was within a point there too.  Its great when everyone is competing so close so evenly matched.  You just cant lose focus on one event or youll let it all slip.  To be a champion in this crowd, its all got to be there.

 

 

Talk about training and your philosophy in the area of throwing?

Im so busy with work and family that when I train, Im all about getting the biggest bang for my buck.  I have a very small amount of time to get a lot of stuff done, so I like athleticism stuff like complexes and strongman-type medleys mixed into my training often.  I fit in the activities that get me the longest throws and strength number.  For me, its usually technique work. Im a thrower who lifts, and it just doesnt work for me the other way around. 

 

We spend a lot of time trying to focus the energy of the throw rather than just gripping and ripping.  John got us to really dialed in with range throwing so we could hit a line at any distance.  Learning how much effort it takes to throw 150 ft lets you know when to apply effort to throw 190 ft.  Hed make us run if we had sector fouls, so you learn how to throw straight really fast and get used to throwing with a consequence.  We play games for accuracy (wed use horseshoe-type scoring at a post set in the sector closest to stick gets a pt, etc.).  Anything to practice being competitive (got practice throwing under pressure) and work technique at the same time is good in my book.

 

Talk about how you structure your week out of season daily in regard to training.

This off season was pretty good for me.  I wasnt moving across the country , starting a new job, etc.  I lifted 3 days a week .  Monday: Heavy Olympic lift and squat, Tuesday incline bench and jerk, maybe a few pull ups for the beach muscles, and then Thursday fluffy stuff (light snatch, OH squat, step ups).  I cycled weights up for 6 weeks, then rest a week, then bumped numbers up a bit and did it again.  I guess its the old way of training and there are newer, better ways to get strongerbut for me, I know it works and I dont get hurt. I like doing non-gym stuff like tire and log flips, carries and pulls.  I never do it hard, but after a Saturday throwing session its great to get right into a 15 minute circuit of that type of stuff.  Id rather be man-strong than gym strong, I think that applies a lot more to the varied events of highland games.  Ill miss a lift to dig a trench or nail shingles on a roof any day you just can make an exercise in the gym that builds you like real work.

 

 

Talk about how you structure your week in season.

Early season, Ill still lift Monday and Tuesday and maybe throw 2 days.  Ill lift hard and still move some weight around.  Middle season, lift one day a week if the travel isnt too bad moderate weight Olympic lifts usually something that wont make me too sore to be quick when throwing.  As much throwing as I can manage.  End of season when the big games count, no lifting or throwing.  Maybe Ill go out and throw 3 throws in one or two events where I need to remind myself what my cues are, but theres very little you can really work on at this point.  Most people dont realize the impact all the travel has on you.  Airplanes, fast food, hotel beds every weekendIm so beat up from a cross-country flight, I cant stand to throw again until Wednesday and if youve got another game on Saturday Ill be tired if I train too much.  You take a guy like McKim, though you can tell from his logs that he just has a huge capacity for workso he can probably lift multiple days during season and still feel fresh.  C. Smith lifts huge, and balances recovery by not throwing  Lots of ways to get there, so youve got to find your groove and stick to it.

 

 

Tell us about some of the injuries you had as an athlete.

College was miserable with bulging discs in the lower back.  Hammer throwing is tough work.  Constant twisting under load, never a free spot in the throw where you arent countering.  I never want to feel like that again so I dont lift heavy.

 

I missed a snatch and dislocated my shoulder the week before AM worlds.  That game hurt a lot.  P-town was 2 weeks after, my first pro game.  That one sucked too but you cant get a spot and miss it.  Im still not able to confidently carry a lot of wt like that.  Other than these, Ive got all the minor stuff everyone else has but no major issues.  I get hurt if I try to move too much weight, so I stay out of the gym as much as I can. 

 

What impresses you now in the sport?

 

The ADs these folks put in so much work to fight the games committee, get us space, tents, water, chairs, all the detailsorganize travel, hotels, scoring, judges, etc.  Its just so much work and I leave every game grateful that the ADs work as hard as they do.  Without them, weve got no sport. 

 

 

Who makes you laugh at games now?

Any game with KO, Chafin, Brock, or Valenti is a game where youll laugh all day.  I hope Chafin comes back to the Claw so he can have a rematch with that ice-cream cake. 

 

 

What events do you wear gloves for?

Weights, though I need to start training without them.  Headed to Scotland for 2 weeks this summer and its no-gloves allowed over there. 

 

 

What are your thoughts on the spin in WOB?  And how it has changed the game?

I think its two different events.  I appreciate the idea that the stand the same way I like the breamara stationary power movement that still has tons of technique.  And I appreciate the spin like I do the open stone.  But still, 2 different styles and 2 different events.  I like games that restrict the spin, and I like the games that allow both.  Change the sport?  It probably brings us closer to its origin. 

 

I bet I can throw this over a higher branch than you can

oh yeah, watch this (stands) 

oh yeah, well watch this (spins) 

hey, no fair drug test, drug test!  (does 2 spins)

 

J

 

What training philosophy do you follow in the gym?

I pick things up, I put them down 

 

In the gym, I always try to look cool.  This is most important best achieved by curls in the squat rack (best lighting), heavy breathing on the pec-dec, and loud, manly grunts before I rack the weight after a set really loud so everyone in the gym can look over and see how much weight Im doing.  I always wear gloves, no fingers headbands are optional but preferred - and I try to stand so chicks can see my bulge.  I wear my weight belt for everything because it makes my lats look fuller and it gets me respect.  Always high-five after one of my bros puts out a particularly rad set on his delts or tris...  I wear my little brothers shirts so my awesome pecs really pop. 

 

 

When did you start lifting weights and what got you started?

I started lifting with my older sister she was smart enough to realize I was a skinny weakling and I needed to get some muscles to get the chicks.  I think I was 15, and she was stronger than I was. 

 

 

What lift is your favorite and what is your best?

Back in the day, I could get over five-hundo on a front squat and only about 525 on a back squat Those days are long gone!  I dont get anywhere near this kind of weight much anymore

 

When you train or throw, is there a routine or something your superstitious about?

I do things in order to stay consistent in my technique, but nothing really too crazy about superstition.  Dan John was a pretty big influence on how we train and compete.  In one of his newsletters he used to write, he had a list of rules and one of them really rang true with me (Rule No. 8).  Paraphrased it says when they call your name, step in and throw.  Nothing else matters the bad breakfast, the weather, the implement, the ground, whether you missed your ritual haircut step in and throw.  I love this.  Many track and field throwers develop to be really fragile they can get a big throw if the wind is right, if I sleep well, if I peak right, if coach gets me the right shoes, if, if, if.they set themselves up with all sorts of excuses to explain failure, and thereby never are really accountable for their performance.  Screw that I trained hard, Ive been doing a long time, I can throw in anything Im ready.  Step in and throw.

 

 

What do you like to do outside of the games?

Life is so busy with work and training, I just try to spend as much time with Mindy and Bella as I can.

 

 

What other hobbies do you have?

I wish I had time for hobbies!  When Im not working on my old boat ( http://pontoonstuff.com/psforum/forum_posts.asp?TID=5785& ; ; ; ;title=m-and-m-bass-buggy-rebuild ) Im usually getting into some woodworking project or home improvement-type distraction 

 

What is your favorite food?

I love a nice rib eye and some veggies. 

 

What is a favorite dessert for you?

 Hmmm, Ive got a major sweet-toothhard to pick a favorite.  Cake, pie, ice-cream...mmm, cheesecake!  Love it all  Ive got a serious addiction to freeze pops.  Ill knock out 10 or 20 in a sitting  Mindys an enabler she keeps me stocked.

 

 

At your house do you cook on the grille?

Grill, nearly every day.  And Ive been learning barbecue real NC, get up before the sun, 18 hours tending the fire all day barbeque.  I get that smoker out, the whole neighborhood comes out, someone lights a bonfire, beer chests start showing up, music its a damn good time.  We call that a Saturday where I live.

 

What supplements do you take?

Is ibuprofen a supplement? 

 

Ill take fish oil.  Im just not a supplement guy.  Seems like theres so much crap and it takes so much work to weed through all the BS, I just dont have time for it. 

 

What do you drink with a meal at home?

Usually water, I dont drink enough water.  Beer if its not a training day and I feel like I deserve a reward! 

 

 

Do you live in a house, apartment or ?

House got a throwing slab in the back and shed with my rack and bumpers just off the back deck.  Gotta make it efficient or Id never be able to compete.

 

 

Talk about meeting your wife.

I knew Id marry her the first time I saw her.  I was at Powells discus camp helping out.  I saw her walking toward us from the other end of the field and I instantly knew Id marry her - hadnt even heard her speak yet.  Heck, she was still 150 feet away and I knew it.  Just hit me and I thought thats my wife right there.  We had both been through long relationships with non-athletes, and we both knew exactly why they didnt work, what we wanted out of life and what we needed in a partner.  Im so lucky to have found her.  She makes me happy every day, and I spend every day trying to make her happy life is just too short and fragile not to do it that way.  She traded her career as an assistant principal and as a thrower to raise our daughter and to let me keep competing, and Ill always be grateful for that.  Its hard to say thanks for such a sacrifice, so all I can do is train harder to show her how much it means to me to have the opportunity.

 

 

Tell us about her as a thrower.

Shes so much better than I am.  She works hard at everything.  Thats one of the things that impresses me most about her.  She just has a tremendous capacity for work, not like McKim with weights, but with tenacity to never quit until way past when it hurts, and only after its done.  When we trained seriously, she pushed me so hard wed throw hours and hours and hours literally be finding our stuff with the truck lights, and cant leave until you get that thing youre looking forand then head home and lift.  Were really competitive, so every practice was a fight to see who would tap out first.  Shes just a gifted athlete the climb a ladder carrying a sheet of plywood in the wind kind of coordinated.  You cant train that shes just able to do stuff the first time.  She was weak as a kitten, though!  I think her best bench ever was 125 or 135 and she was among the countrys elite in the shot.  Cleans up to 155 I think, squat to 185 would nearly crush her  But she is throwing strong wed take 60 throws in 3 or 4 events at every practice when we were throwing hard.  We had a stack of implements and wed throw 8 discusses in a row, jog out and pick them up, throw them back, and do it again.  She could do that every day of the week and still end every practice with her longest throw when she needed it.  And dont ever challenger her, because she can step up like no one Ive seen.    

 

When your wife looks at you, does she more enjoy you coming or going?

This baby got back

 

 

Tell us about the rest of your family.

 Ive got three older sisters and two wonderful parents.  They are up in CT and I really miss being around them.  I think of Mindys family as my family too, and I wish we could be in Michigan to be near them as well.  Both sets are really tight knit and have picnics every weekend, go to events together we really miss that stuff.

 

 

What faith do you follow?

I was raised Catholic, but stopped attending when I moved to Vegas.  I always felt like everyone was just going through the motions and didnt really participate.  We have been to a few churches here in NC and are looking for the right fit.  The last one was more like a rock concert than a massit was fun, very different than what I grew up with!  Lots of standing and hand waiving, some crying and jumping here and there.  Folks were really getting into it was a lot of fun to see.  I used to date a girl that was Quaker, and I really enjoyed that church too.  Quiet and contemplative, good music, and really sincere people.  I really enjoy Dans get-togethers on Sunday games he brings out the kind of religion I can relate to.  I really appreciate him for that.

 

 I know youre a Christian, so is there any particular passage you hold onto?

Nothing significant really comes to mind but I dont study the Bible like a lot of people at last weekends service do.  Have tried to read it several times and just cant get through it (or cant make the time), but I like to listen to a good sermon and take away a message to think about.  Every once I a while you hear something that makes you stop and think, put things into perspective and appreciate what you have I find a lot of value in those passages.

 

Do you like to garden?

 I love the idea of gardening, and in Vegas we had a great gardenbut it was on an irrigation system (hey, Im an engineer!) and I worked from home so it was really easy.  This year with crazy work schedule, training, travel, and a 1 yr old, getting a garden in and caring for it just wasnt in the cards.

 

 

Do you mow your own grass or do you have a man?

 I have a woman!  Mindy does it, she loves it, and Im a lucky, lucky man. 

 

 

Are you a cat or dog person?

Dog, got 2 great labs

 

 

Are you conservative or liberal in your politics?

 Same as my supplement perspective theres too much crap out there to weed through so I stay out of it.  The guys I work with laugh at me because I am clueless about this stuff.. Joe Biden was at one of our projects and I didnt know who he was  I asked them who has the world record in the shot and none of them knew that, so we just agree to be interested in different stuff.

 

 

Are you into Astrology?  What sign are you?

 Im a Gemini, and people tell me I fit the sign well.  Powell was way into astrology, so we were always hearing about it when training with him.. We named our dog Mercury because it was in retrograde when we got him from the shelter (knowing John would say youre not supposed to make big decisions or purchases when mercury was in retrograde)

 

Who kills the bugs in your house?

Thats me Mindy will gut a deer but she doesnt like spiders.

 

Talk about some of the music you listen to at different times.

I love music have it on as much as possible.  All kinds Im a blues man at heart Sonny Boy Williamson, Junior Wells, Howlin Wolf man, I done things kings and queens dont even know about!  Most of the time (on an airplane, driving), Ive got blues on.  Early blues, the further you can get from electric blues, the better.  I was going to be a music major instead of an engineer, so I listen to a lot of classical too I really like early stuff, Baroque or earlier.  But Im just a fan of all music old rap, new rap, hillbilly stuff, bluegrass Ive got major appreciation for artists and musicians who have dedicated their life to their craft, and I wanna hear it all. 

 

No music when training or competing need to focus on technique in the gym and when throwing.

 

Where do you like to go out to eat?

Im usually on the road so much with work and throwing, the best meal I can get is cooked by Mindy.  If we go out (rarely with a 1 yr old!) Mindy loves PF Changs.

 

 

What do you like to watch on TV?

deadliest catch, swamp people, mythbusters, family guy, Tosh, pawn stars, ultimate fightinggotta DVR everything and fast forward through commercials

 

 

Are you a western movie or sci fi person?  Tell a favorite.

Nope, both these are lost on me.  John Wayne was a cowboy with a gun and Spock was a dork with pointy earsthats all I know.

 

 

What are the goals for this year?

Throw far, have fun.

 

Thank you brother.

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