Written by Joseph Sullivan, a Kabuki Strength sponsored athlete and one of the top 220 powerlifters in the world. Along with this piece we have released a “Sully Strong” special edition shirt which can be purchased on our store or via the links below.
Death and darkness. The only things we are guaranteed or entitled to out of life. You might view that as cynical, but I view it as empowering! To accept the fact that we are nothing in the grand scheme of things, lends so much power to every one of our decisions and passions in this life because it is our ONLY life. So you may as well stand for something and let a passion consume you because by accepting the fact that we are nothing except a blink in the grand scheme of time, means we must find substance in our existence because that is all we can attach ourselves to.
Powerlifting is an ego driven endeavor but by detaching yourself from your ego, and by considering your success and your forward progress as nothing but an INEVITABLY you may move past the fear, the distraught, and the failure of a missed lift. If you know what you are capable of and have shown that in the completion of your training with machine like precision, you know that whatever you call for on a third attempt WILL be there. It’s simply an inevitability that you move the weight.
I have been competing in powerlifting for 10 years now. I have always expected great things from myself, and held myself to a high standard. I hit my first “elite” total at 1725lbs at 198lbs in 2015. I took NO time off between then and now, but had many setbacks along the way. I will save you a list but no shortage of muscle tears, ruptures, financial woes, among other things. But I still treated achievement as an inevitability. Despite botched weight cuts, despite bombing out of meets, and despite many failures, I felt nothing at my core. I knew it was merely ether in my way, and if I proceeded I would reach what I set out to a decade prior.
That 1725lb total was eclipsed by my 2006lb total in November of 2016. Eclipsed even more so by my 2121lb total at the 2017 US Open. The future is an inevitability.
I am proud of what I have done, and feel meaning through my accomplishments, but they are not WHO I AM. Nothing is at my core but myself, and I will continue to relentlessly pursue what I have set out to, not for glory, not for money, not for fame, but because I hold the conviction that strength is my meaning. Nothing defines who you are, except for what you allow. Due to that, I am nothing and I will feel nothing. My core will be made up of passion and fire, but no event will subdue that fire because it will be as resilient as frozen ice.