A 77-YEAR-OLD Scotsman has been selected to compete in the Four Nations Powerlifting Championships in Ireland this weekend.
David Hearn, who lives on the Isle of Skye, will represent Scotland against teams from Ireland, Wales and England in Castleblayney, County Monaghan.
The team of 12 must include five men, three women and a master, someone over 40 years old.
Master classes are divided into age groups ascending every five years.
Mr Hearn, now retired from a 30 year long career as a firefighter in Glasgow, is a master level 8.
Under powerlifting rules the older the competitor, the better the handicap awarded to them.
In his last World Drug Free Federation Championships, Mr Hearn won his class of 75-80 year olds. He was one of three competitors in the M8 category.
He said: “I think that’s why they selected me, I get more points because of my age.”
The impressive pensioner can still hold his ground though, and hopes to beat or match his current records in the annual competition.
The septuagenarian can bench press 85 kilograms, squat 112.5 kilograms and deadlift an outstanding 155 kilograms.
Mr Hearn intends to start with a comfortable weight at the start of the competition, before moving up and trying to beat his own record.
He said: “In the squat round, if you fail during one of your three attempts then you are out. So it’s best to start with a weight I know I can do.
“That’s followed by the bench press and then the deadlift, you get three goes at each.
“There are three judges watching you at all times, are strict and there are lots of ways you can fail.
“In the squat you have to get your bum below your knees, and that can be quite tricky to pull off sometimes.”
The remarkable OAP shows no signs of slowing down and is preparing for the competition with a protein heavy diet of steak, eggs, fruit and vegetables.
He practices in his home made gym in his garage, as well as meeting up with his trainer in Inverness would mean a three hour trip each way.
Mr Hearn used to be an avid ultra marathon runner before he turned his hand to powerlifting, and likes to keep active and involved in the sport that he only took up four years ago.
He said: “I was getting too old for running, then I tried weight lifting and realised I was better at it than I thought I would be.
“A lot of people retire and stop being active. I hope they see me and that it will encourage more people to get fit.”