Interview With Powerlifter Casey "Dr. Grow" Reece As told to CriticalBench.com by Curt Dennis Jr. "The Brute" of Planetrage.com - December 2007
CASEY REECE...he's the current top raw bencher in the 308s and has amazing benching strength and technique. This is a man truly in hiding in the moment that's making his march to 900. Check him out in this interview...he's a beast that's about to come out of hiding!
Critical Bench: Hey, thanks for doing this interview, Casey, Please
I live in Asheville, NC, and have been married going
on 5 years. My day job is case management, which
allows me to influence children and try to improve
their lives. In the afternoons, it is gym time.
Critical Bench: How long have you been into powerlifting?
18 years - since the age of 13.
Critical Bench: Tell us about your childhood and how you got into
At the age of 13, my parents gave me a weightlifting
set for Christmas. Before that I used cement blocks,
and utilized exercises such as push ups and sit ups.
Critical Bench: Who did you look up to when you were coming up as a
I have several friendships that developed while going
to the gym. John Hamilton, Chris Garner, and Randy
Cope are just a few of the friends who have inspired
and encouraged me along the way.
Critical Bench: What would you say to a novice lifter or to a lifter
whose just starting out in powerlifting?
Consistency and muscular balance are very important.
Just working chest will not cut it. One must work all
of his or her muscles to achieve in powerlifting.
Patience is also futile.
Critical Bench: Is the bench your favorite lift out of the three?
Where do you stand on squats and deads?
Bench pressing is my choice lift, but I also enjoy
squatting. I do more "good mornings" than dead lifts.
Critical Bench: What are the challenges of coming up as a powerlifter?
It is unfortunate that powerlifting is not seen as a
major sport because it is a sport that makes other
Critical Bench: Tell everyone here the difference between someone who
wants to look “pretty” and someone who do what we do?
The difference between a workout and a training
Powerlifting is not about looking a certain way. As a
powerlifter, I am at the gym to move weight pure and
Critical Bench: What would you tell a powerlifer if they are trying to
get to the next level in the sport? Do you believe
that powerlifters' have a lifestyle of their own?
Being a powerlifter requires discipline, which not
everyone can contribute continuously. A structured
schedule, diet (including many protein shakes), and
family understanding are essential to make it to the
Critical Bench: Where do you train? Do you train with someone or a
group of lifters or train solo?
I train at Vision Sports with on average two work out
partners (Josh Slagle and Patrick Brown.)
Critical Bench: How driven would people say you are about being a
On a scale of 1 to 10, I am a 200. Holidays,
funerals, weddings... nothing interferes with gym
Critical Bench: How does it effect you outside of the gym?
My dedication applies to all aspects of my life. I
set a goal, and achieve it.
Critical Bench: What training methods do you incorporate that work?
Westside Barbell and Metal Militia training
Critical Bench: What would you suggest to someone on how to get a big
Rear deltoids, upper back, and strong elbow muscles.
Critical Bench: When was your last meet and what did you do?
January 2007 - I bench 550 raw with a (looong) pause
at 290 lbs. This lift classified me as No. 1 in the
308-weight class for 2007.
Critical Bench: Was your training any different prior to your last
I incorporate more shirt work now.
Critical Bench: Do you think using bench shirts/gear are cheating?
I think a great lifter does raw and assisted and that
is the tale of the tape.
Critical Bench: What is your view on training in equipment and
Get a good video (Westside Barbell or Metal Militia)
and study up, and remember that a high tolerance for
failure and having fun are what it is all about.
Critical Bench: What do you think is the reason for all the big
benches as of late like Kennelly's 1036 and Luyando's
905? Has strength training evolved?
Raw records have stayed virtually the same, while
equipment is becoming more advanced.
Critical Bench: How do you feel about Shawn Frankl's 760 bench at the
bench bash? Do you think the standards went up?
I'm not familiar with him.
Critical Bench: What was your nutrition like prior to your last
Muscle milk, steak, and chicken.
Critical Bench: Any ideas on how you're going to make your trek to 900
bench now? What changes are you goin to have to make
to get there?
Weight gain with belly up and elbows in.
Critical Bench: Is there anyone you would like to thank right now?
1. Jesus Christ
2. My wife
3. John Hamilton, Chris Garner, Josh Slagle, Patrick
Brown, Chad Link, Mike Moore, Keith Mackey, and the
entire Trailer Park Mafia Team!
Thank you for the opportunity to interview with you.