It’s no secret that our Masters are some of the toughest and most amazing athletes to be found. We’re not just impressed by the feats these men and women can perform, but we hope fervently that we’re half as badass as them down the line. Take Thomas Ackerman, for example. At 62 years old, he’s our oldest competitor at the 2016 Kill Cliff Granite Games. And clearly, he’s not letting a number slow him down. Thomas competed amongst his peers this year, finishing 10th overall, with FOUR top 6 finishes (including a 2nd place finish on Red Line and a 3rd place finish in The Longest Mile)! We’re beyond impressed, Thomas.
GG: Thomas, how long have you been training now, and how long have you been competing?
Thomas Ackerman: I’ve been at it about 4 years now and I started competing almost right away. Maybe 6 months into it, I started competing at local competitions.
GG: And why do you continue to compete?
TA: I like it. I like mixing with people and I like the competition. There aren’t a lot of sports you can do at my age where you can actually play competitively. The competitors are great, you’re doing the same thing with them, it’s collegial while at the same time being competitive.
GG: Were you always a competitive person?
TA: Well, I played high school sports, I did a couple of years of track in college, and I’ve been playing in pick-up basketball leagues my whole life—plus golf, those kinds of things. Basketball has been pretty competitive, I still do that. I played softball and a few other sports when I was young. So this is kinda fitting nicely into that environment, learning new things. And besides competing, I like still being young at the sport. You know, there’s still a lot of areas for me to improve upon: technique, weight, things like that. So I enjoy things like that, improving on where I’m weak.
GG: And what did you find to be the toughest event over the weekend?
TA: Midline Crisis was pretty tough. I think coming off the T2B, which is not my best movement, I tend to fatigue a little bit sooner than some of the other guys and the snatches were a little heavy. I failed a couple of them. And once you fail a couple of them, it becomes more difficult because you’re wasting energy and not getting any reps. I got a couple, failed a couple. I managed to get through the 5 reps and finished it. I think I was last in that event, it was the first one I came last in. I thought I’d do a little bit better, but that’s the way it is.