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Jeremy Hoornstra has established himself as the best bench presser of all-time!
This summer, Jeremy set the all-time (meaning the highest of all sanctioning bodies) world record in the bench press with a staggering 675 pounds RAW, weighing in at a paltry 266 pounds. Hoornstra broke the 672 pound record he recently set this past May in his weight class.
Hoornstra also owns the world record mark in the 242-pound division for the raw bench press, which stands at 661 pounds. His lifts will soar as he grows into the 275 pound weight class and he will break the 242-pound mark again. What makes his feats even more amazing is that he’s able to find a way to put in the time and work necessary to excel at the elite level with a full time job and family responsibilities.
To put things into perspective, Jeremy set the all-time world record in the bench press in 2007 for the 242 class with 615 lbs.; the old record of 601 stood for nearly 30 years. His 661 is a staggering 10 percent higher. Jeremy has held all-time world records for nearly a decade. That kind of longevity is very rare at this level. What makes things even more interesting is that he has not even hit his peak.
The absolute most weight a human being has bench pressed is 722, by Super Heavy Weight, Eric Spoto. Even when compared with top super heavy weights that can weigh 100+ more pounds than Jeremy, his lift still ranks in the top 10 of all-time.
Comparing Jeremy, regardless of bodyweight, longevity, or by how much his records annihilate previous marks—it is clear he is the best bench presser of all-time.
How did you get started with bodybuilding and powerlifting?
I grew up playing sports like baseball, soccer, etc. and started lifting in high school where I won most of the meets I competed in, and went on to state almost every year. I trained heavy after high school but wanted to get into bodybuilding more, so I did a few bodybuilding and strongman shows.
When I was in college, a friend who competed in powerlifting told me I had just performed a world record for a triple and to do a powerlifting meet. I did one or two and started getting calls to do more.
Is it true you will start doing 3 lift powerlifting meets? If so, when?
Yes, I have always trained full body since bodybuilding and still do the three big powerlifting lifts weekly. I am just always asked to bench, but I will do full power again May 9th at the Pig Iron Classic meet in Fort Worth, Texas.
At what point did you decide to pursue the bench press world record?
I honestly didn’t even know I was in the ballpark until I was literally stronger and could break the record the first meet I entered. I was in bodybuilding and didn’t know who Mike McDonald was or anyone in powerlifting at that point.
What does your current workout split look like?
I have a four-day split that either takes 6 or 8 days to finish based on my work schedule. I have a heavy chest with lots of volume day, then a heavy leg day, a shoulder, light chest and triceps day, then last is a heavy back day with traps.
What are some of your favorite exercises to build power out of the bottom?
I think the thing that has helped me the most is the deadpress. When I started that I was slow off my chest, no power and was considerably weaker at the actual deadpress itself. Within a few months it had shot up well over 100 lbs. and helped me get tons of speed that carried over to my bench, so much in that it transitioned my weakest part of the bench into one of my strongest.
What are some of your favorite exercise for building lockout power?
Weighted dips with a pause are brutal but work great. I also like to superset iso presses, usually under the squat rack safety racks with me pushing against it about 1-2 inches from lockout for 5 seconds, then jump onto close-grip bench for heavy doubles.
Anything special you do to enhance recovery?
For recovery I immediately down a glass of branched chain aminos while still at the gym. Then about an hour later I eat a good solid meal and then hopefully within another hour or so get in my hot tub. I think that those combined with good quality sleep are the best combination for any workout recovery.
Describe your daily diet.
My daily diet is usually clean. If I’m cutting to a weight class I eat very much like a bodybuilder with some variations – eggs and grits, chicken and sweet potatoes with green beans, etc. The only difference is that I add in lean red meat, preferably venison or something along those lines. If I’m not cutting or trying to gain a little I just up the carbs a bit and add in a few more servings of red meat.
What drives you to keep going, and pushing through your hardest times?
I want to be the strongest, and in my mind I have to train like I’m number two to be number one. Pound for pound strongest bencher sounds cool and all, but the highest bench ever sounds better in my mind. I also do it for my family to make them proud. They’re with me every step of the way and know all the sacrifices I’ve made.
How can people contact you?
I have a training log and question thread on animalpak’s forum, but usually check my Facebook daily. I have a fan page as well so search me out or just message me at email@example.com.