'The Ant' pulls his weight
BY day, Joel Keating works on transmission towers for Ergon Energy.
During his spare time, the 25-year-old enjoys working out at his local gym.
Last weekend, he proved the years of hard work had been worth it when he put his strength to the test at the 2012 Australian Strongman Championships.
The muscular, 90kg strongman said he lifted good weights earning him a place in the Australian side.
"I did various amounts of weights, I lifted 180kg, squatted 270kg, did a straight dead lift of 275kg," Keating said.
"I averaged out to be able to lift 3.4 times my own body weight," he said.
The local strongman was undefeated in his weight division leaving him ranked number one in Australia.
"Initially I wasn't going to enter into this competition but in the middle of December I decided to enter into a competition and lifted really well," Keating said.
"They nicknamed me 'The Ant' because I totalled 10 times my body weight, which definitely helped to boost my standings."
Keating said the Australian side would be heading to New Zealand next month.
"We head over to Dunedin on March 5 to participate in a strongman training camp," he said.
"There will be some big names and professionals teaching us different training methods, what we need to lift and how to lift safely."
Keating has competed in strongman events since the age of 13, winning his first national trophy at 17.
"I had previously made the Junior Commonwealth Games team, so I knew if I worked hard I could get there again," he said.
He hopes 2012 will see his strongman career continue after recently returning from injury.
"Two years ago I tore my bicep which put me out for a while," he said.
"I have been training for the past year in hope of qualifying for nationals."
"My goal now is to just not get hurt."
Keating is set to head to Malaysia later this year to participate in another training camp prior to the Olympics.