Janis Finkelman’s New World Record Deadlift: 225kg at 60kg Bodyweight

Iowa-based powerlifter Janis Finkelman has set a new IPL deadlift world record with a mighty pull of 225 kilograms (496 pounds) at 60kg (132lb), more than 3.75 times her bodyweight.

The lift took place at the USPA Bar Benders Raw Championship in Minnesota this weekend. (Bar Benders has no affiliation with BarBend.) All in all, she squatted 341 pounds (154.7kg) in knee sleeves, benched 214 pounds (97kg), and deadlifted 496 pounds for a total of 1,051 pounds (476.7kg).

In an Instagram post, she wrote of her performance:

This was a lift I’m pretty sure I got basically only because I wanted it, it was what I came for, and I had no other choice. It was not perfect, or easy. Nothing hard won is. I’m grateful for the last year, one of the hardest of my life, and not remotely just because of my arm.

I just started a new job three weeks ago, I have had some pretty significant emotional turmoil, I’ve dealt with a lot of depression this year. This lift gave me closure on things that needed it badly. I had no idea what was going on after it returned to the ground.

The surgery she’s referring to was a torn distal biceps tendon, an injury that occurred in mid-July 2016 — that may be why she’s pulling hook grip here, something that’s somewhat unusual for world record-breaking lifts. Since then, Finkelman has been chronicling her rehab and her slow-but-sure return to strength in raw, honest social media posts.

[Wondering if it’s possible to prevent a bicep tear? Check out our in-depth article!]

We last wrote about her in April when she pulled 460 pounds (208.6 kilograms) for a double, so her rehab appears to be working pretty well.

This was a significant weight because the second rep of a set of 460-pound deadlifts is what tore her bicep in the first place. Now that she’s back at full strength, we can’t wait to see what kind of numbers this athlete will hit in the future.

Featureg image via @janisfinkelman on Instagram.

Nick English

Nick English

Nick is a content producer and journalist with over seven years’ experience reporting on four continents. His first articles about health were on a cholera outbreak in rural Kenya while he was reporting for a French humanitarian organization. His next writing job was covering the nightlife scene in Shanghai. He’s written on a lot of things.

After Shanghai, he went on to produce a radio documentary about bodybuilding in Australia before finishing his Master’s degrees in Journalism and International Relations and heading to New York City. Here, he’s been writing on health full time for more than five years for outlets like BarBend, Men's Health, VICE, and Popular Science.

No fan of writing in the third person, Nick’s passion for health stems from an interest in self improvement: How do we reach our potential?

Questions like these took him through a lot of different areas of health and fitness like gymnastics, vegetarianism, kettlebell training, fasting, CrossFit, Paleo, and so on, until he realized (or decided) that strength training fit best with the ideas of continuous, measurable self improvement.

At BarBend his writing focuses a little more on nutrition and long-form content with a heaping dose of strength training. His underlying belief is in the middle path: you don’t have to count every calorie and complete every workout in order to benefit from a healthy lifestyle and a stronger body. Plus, big traps are cool.

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