The fear of being average. That’s what drives power lifters Jerad Johnson and his wife. “Neither of us are the type of person that just wants to blend in and be part of a mediocre group.”
LIFTING FOR REAL
Three years ago, high school teacher and football/track coach Jerad Johnson and his wife opened up their own powerlifting studio in Atlanta. “[The gym] was frowning on us for using chalk and not putting weight down light enough. And we weren’t there to socialize, so people were looking at us funny.”
Jerad knew he wanted to get his own place for people interested in lifting “for real.” “We wanted to play the music we wanted, use chalk and make our own rules,” said Jerad. “Then with me having a coaching profession, we came across a lot of college kids who don’t want to buy a membership because they need to power clean and dead lift and couldn’t get into the school around certain times – same reasons we opened the gym – so we opened it to them too.” Now Jerad sees up to 10 college athletes that come in to lift. “They want somewhere they can be outside of the masses of a cookie-cutter type gym.”
Their studio started out with one rack and a platform and has grown to three racks, three platforms, sleds, tractor tire, glute/ham-raise machine, cable-pulley system, farmers walk handles, plyo boxes and more. “I’ve always played sports and enjoyed being an athlete. Mainly baseball and basketball are the two I loved the most. The lightbulb went off that lifting makes you a better athlete, so I decided to get as strong as I possibly could, and lifting took over from there. I became a weight room junkie.”
Jerad’s personal workout starts with a 20-minute warm-up before he hits his main lift, incorporating dead lifts or dead lift variations, bench or bench lift variations off the blocks or rack pins. Depending on the day, he may work in bands or chains. “We have a main lift during the summer we work all the way up to a very heavy triple or even a single rep, getting 9 to 10 sets in. We’ll focus on one exercise and work on details that enhance and help with that movement. Nine out of 10 times it ends up being some kind of a glute/ham-raise variation because that’s a good power builder.” He usually finishes with some form of conditioning: runs with the sled, farmer’s walk/carry, flipping tires.
THE POWER & INFLUENCE OF P4
P4 sports supplements were the perfect match for Jerad’s intense routine and his position as a high school football/track-and-field coach. He found it through one of his former athletes who was home for the winter with the Cincinnati Reds. He knew Jerad was a power lifter and that he takes supplements. “I got smarter about understanding that these kids watch what I do. Like, if they see me taking a salt, they’re going to go take a salt. So if they’re going to do that, I want them to see me taking something that they can use. So I try to stick with stuff that I think is good. I pulled it up on the internet, and I said, ‘We have to look into the this company.’ They’re doing everything the right way. We can all take it safely and not get hit with any banned substance penalties and we’ll all be able to sleep at night.”
“I take P4 PRE GAME 20 minutes before I start warming up, and by the time I’m done getting loosened up, you can tell it’s kicked in and you’re ready to go.” Jerad takes P4 Recovery a little over half way through his workout. “I really enjoy that since it’s a good, solid two hours to get through what we need to get through. [Most] of the college guys here have bought Pre Game and Recovery. I keep it here for them so they can just grab a scoop, shake it up and get after it.
“We take a lot of pride in having the mental ability to push ourselves further than most people would want to. We feed off of setting the bar higher,” says Jerad. And P4 is proud to help Jerad power through it.