Patrik Baboumian may not be blessed with great height, but when it comes to the Log Lift he can beat many of his taller strongman competitors.
Even more astonishing is that he is a Vegetarian, so perhaps this article should be titled the World’s Strongest Vegetarian….
Over to Patrik…
Phil Burgess: Ok I’m confused, I read that you were born in Iran and moved to Germany as a child, but you are Armenian-German? Can you clear up my confusion?
Patrik Baboumian: My ancestors were Armenians who have been living in Iran for many generations. So I was born and raised in Iran.
When I was seven years old I came to Germany, so I grew up here.
Phil Burgess: You and Laurence Shahlei are both Iranian by birth, have you competed in Strongman against each other, and if so, have you discussed your similar backgrounds?
Phil Burgess: In 1999, You won the IFBB German Junior Bodybuilding Championship, why did you leave the sport of bodybuilding for strongman?
Patrik Baboumian: Primarily I have always been stronger than I appeared, and I seem to have more talent for Strongman than for Bodybuilding.
Additionally to me bodybuilding is much more demanding than Strongman.
FinallySstrongman is so much more fun than any other sport.
Phil Burgess: As a Vegetarian do you have to eat more protein than a meat eater, as the vegetable protein has a lower absorption rate?
Patrik Baboumian: I experienced no difference at all after adopting the vegetarian diet, but one thing that changed was my increased appetite which led to big gains in body weight and strength.
I have now been Vegan for more than 4 months and my main protein source is soy in the form of Tofu, soy milk and soy isolate powder. I am also stronger than I have ever been before.
Phil Burgess: You competed in the 2007 IFSA under 105kg Strongman World Championships in China, placing 14th, what did you learn from this?
Patrik Baboumian: Before I competed at this competition in China, I had been competing in Strongman for only one year.
At that time I didn’t have any training equipment for strongman event training, but trained in a regular gym. So every competition in that time was a great opportunity to learn and gain experience.
Phil Burgess: Do you think that there should be more under 105kg competitions, and perhaps another lighter weight class for strongman competitions?
Patrik Baboumian: Yes I think the lighter weight ideas are a good idea because they give “normal people” a chance to get into the sport. And only by that it is possible to bring the sport to the masses.
Phil Burgess: It seems that Log Press is your speciality, as you currently hold the Log Lift World Record for the under 105kg division with 162.5kg. What assistance exercises in the gym do you find the most useful for increasing your strength on this lift?
Patrik Baboumian: To be honest I think that if you want to be good at the log you got to work at the log but I used to do very heavy sitting front presses at the multi-press and also the same exercise with partials and weights up to 260 kg to get my joints used to the heavy weights.
Phil Burgess: In the Log Lift heavyweight class in 2011 you lifted 190kg in Turku, Finland, when do you think you will make a 200kg lift?
Patrik Baboumian: I already lifted 200 kg in training and I have even tried to break the loglifting world record with a 215 kg attempt for my documentary “Kraftakt” which will be released in 2012.
I could easily clean the 215 but couldn’t get the log over my head, but I won’t give up, I hope to get there by this year.
Phil Burgess: What are your goals for 2012?
Patrik Baboumian: My first goal is to defend my title as Germany’s Strongest Man and then I would love to qualify for the World Strongest Man to see how much damage a dwarf like me can cause in that field.
Phil Burgess: Speaking of height how tall are you and how much do you weigh? And what are your best lifts for Deadlift, Squat and Bench Press?
Patrik Baboumian: I am 171 cm and I currently weigh 125 kg.
My PRs are: deadlift 360 kg, squat 350 kg, bench press 210 kg (all RAW).
Phil Burgess: In 2011 you won Germany’s Strongest Man, how did it feel to win this competition?
Patrik Baboumian:It was my greatest moment in strength sports so far.
Phil Burgess: What events do you love and what ones do you dislike? And what do you love the most about the sport of strongman?
Patrik Baboumian: I think my favorite event would be the Yoke, if i wasn’t so good at the Log Lift. So basically I like overhead and running events.
I seriously hate the stones!!
The best aspect about strongman is the fact that you meet such great and crazy guys and there are several of them that I honestly love.
Phil Burgess: For recovery do you use a Chiropractor, or deep tissue massages, foam rollers or another treatment?
Patrik Baboumian: I only use massages if I have to treat an injury and I use a foam roller from time to time to relax my back.
Phil Burgess: If you could make any one change to the sport of strongman to improve its popularity what would you do?
Patrik Baboumian: I would make myself become world champion 🙂