It is not every day an athlete walks into their gym and deadlifts more than they ever have before. However, that was the case for five-time Fittest Man On Earth®, Mat Fraser. On Aug. 29, 2021, the CrossFit G.O.A.T. took to his Instagram page to share a video of his colossal 540-pound (244.9-kilogram) deadlift personal record. The lift was performed raw, in socks, with a mixed grip, chalked hands, and without a lifting belt.
What is even more impressive is right after locking out his pull, Fraser shared that he is down 10 pounds of body weight and had just finished a 30-minute cardio session on the Stairmaster® before the lift. If you have not yet seen Fraser’s heaviest-ever deadlift, check it out below:
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The lift was relatively smooth, but once the bar got past Fraser’s knees, he hitched the weight (meaning he rested the bar on his quads for a brief second before pulling it to lockout). Hitching is a technique that’s not allowed in powerlifting but is allowed in strongman. He seemed quite pleased with this deadlift to the point where he almost couldn’t believe he hit it. After dropping the barbell, he popped onto a nearby weight plate and did a little dance while conveying to his team around him that it was, in fact, a lifetime PR.
The celebration for Fraser was rather short-lived as the caption of his Instagram post suggests he has already moved the goalposts for where he expects his deadlift to go:
Feels pretty cool to be hitting PRs after my competitive career. I think 600 needs to happen though.
A max deadlift was last featured at the CrossFit Games in 2020. The third event in the Finals of the competition was the “CrossFit Total.” It consisted of each athlete establishing a max rep back squat, shoulder press, and deadlift. Fraser established a max deadlift of 535 pounds (247.2 kilograms). Check out that lift below courtesy of the CrossFit Games YouTube channel:
Fraser retired from competitive CrossFit in early February 2021 but maintained a rather intense training regimen despite all the other endeavors he has undertaken since. He programs the “Hard Work Pays Off” (HWPO) training method for Hybrid Performance Method (HPM), records a podcast alongside CrossFit Games veteran Josh Bridges and Sevan Matossian, built out a supplements company called Podium with the Buttery Bros — Heber Cannon and Marston Sawyers — and wrote a book titled “HWPO” with Spenser Mestel. He even made time to be a guest for an episode on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast with host Joe Rogan and start his own YouTube channel to share insights into his diet, quirky equipment in his garage, and behind the scenes footage of his experience at the CrossFit Games as a spectator rather than the defending champion.
Although Fraser is finished with competitive CrossFit, he is still making improvements in the gym. It will be left to the imagination to wonder how he would fare should he return to the Games. Judging from his latest PR, he’d likely maintain his status as the G.O.A.T.
Featured image: @mathewfras on Instagram