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LEARNING A NEW SPORT: Will Jackson places 1st in powerlifting tourney

Andalusia High School alumni Will Jackson finished in first place in his weight class at the Powerlifting Championship on Sunday in Birmingham.

“I started lifting weights about five or six years ago,” Jackson said. “It started out as something to lose weight and look better, but I’m a very competitive and like to have goals.”

Having those goals led Jackson to try his hand at competing.

“I tried body building at first, but didn’t enjoy that kind of competition,” Jackson said. “I like lifting heavy things so that’s what I liked about powerlifting. When you have 400 pounds on the bar, it’s just you and the bar. There is no outside help.”

Jackson, a third-year medical student, said lifting weights helps him offset the mental strain of being a medical student.

“With me being a med student, I’m doing mental tasks all day long,” Jackson said. “Lifting weights gives me something to do physically.”

Jackson just started competing in powerlifting, but has already came away with a couple of medals.

“This was just my second powerlifting competition,” Jackson said. “My first one was back in January and I placed third in my weight class.”

Getting into powerlifting wasn’t his orginal plan, but Jackson said he has enjoyed learning the sport.

“I heard about it online and looked into it,” Jackson said of finding out about powerlifting competitions. “It seemed like something I would enjoy so I gave it a try. The first competition I signed up for because I had friend that was competiting in it as well. Now, I’ve joined a few Facebook groups and have a coach online that helps me with my program.”

Jackson said he recommends powerlifting to anyone looking for a sport to get into.

“Powerlifting is a great sport,” Jackson said. “If anyone is interested, then just look for an event and sign up. It’s a very supportive community. Everyone wants to see everyone succeed. It may be a competition, but at the end of the day you are just competing against yourself.”