On Friday, Sept. 28, Len Sandberg won the 148-pound-and-under Powerlifting Bench Press World Championship (an AAU event) at Harrah’s Resort and Casino in Laughlin, Nev.
Sandberg, who is 90 years old, lifted 110 pounds to take home the championship win. As he reaches out to shake this reporter’s hand, one thing is certain... Sandberg is in peak physical shape for any age.
“That doesn’t tell you a whole hell of a lot,” said Sandberg of the competition specifications. “If I got into all the necessary methodology involved in the competition, it could take up this entire article.”
That being said, Sandberg notes that the competition did not entail a simple one-repetition “max out,” but he succeeded nonetheless.
Prior to his move to La Jolla, Sandberg worked in the steel business. He says that despite boxing as a kid, that he didn’t really get into working out until his 40s. Although he ran a marathon in 3.5 hours in his 50s, Sandberg’s modesty will not allow him to boast about his time – an average of 8-minute miles.
“I was too busy raising a family, paying bills, etc.,” he added. “Once I got here [La Jolla], it was really conducive to getting into shape. When you’re running marathons as an older person, just finishing the race is more important than your time.”
Sandberg is no stranger to competition, or the fine gym facilities available to himself and other Casa de Mañana residents. In fact, Sandberg has made a point to credit his moving there as a key to his success as a competitive weightlifter.
As a “dedicated gym rat,” he says that he works out three days a week at Casa de Mañana’s facilities.
“I cannot give enough credit to the staff, who I have had nothing but pleasant interactions with,” said Sandberg, who has been living at the minimal-assisted living facility for the past eight years.
One step into the Sandberg’s apartment and one could easily see why they love living there. Replete with ultra-modern amenities, a porch facing the Pacific and their recent renovations, they have found a slice of paradise most dream of.