Highlights from the 2020 Arnold Strongman USA – Muscle & Fitness

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Barbells were deadlifted, Atlas stones were hoisted, and cute dogs were spotted at the second annual Arnold Strongman USA in Santa Monica, CA. The Strongman contest was the last qualifier for the Arnold Strongman Classic in March in Columbus, OH. Reigning World’s Strongest Man Martins Licis claimed the spot and won the competition for the second year in a row. 
That means four-time World’s Strongest Man Brian Shaw will not appear at the Arnold Classic for the first time since 2009. In an Instagram post, Shaw, who came in second, said he was proud of how he performed and that “Big things are coming in 2020.” 

The Arnold Santa Monica is a wrap and it was an amazing event! Thank you to @schwarzenegger and everyone involved for putting on a great event! – I didn’t have the contest that I was hoping to have, but I am very proud to have fought through the adversity I had to face around the contest. At the end of the day none of that matters and only the end result is what is important and the bottom line is I came up one point short of winning. Congratulations to @martinslicis on his win and @max.boudreault23 on his great 3rd place performance – Thank you to my sponsors @redcon1 @trifectasystem @roguefitness @getnewage for all of their support and always being in my corner! Thank you to @probodycoach for helping me to get back on track with my diet and performance. And of course thank you to my team for everything (you know who you are)…last but not least thank you to my wife @fitmommy_kerishaw for your unwavering love and support…I couldn’t do it without you! – Thank you to all of you for your support! Big things are coming in 2020! @evolutionathleticsgear #shawstrength #begreat
A post shared by Brian Shaw (@shawstrength) on Jan 19, 2020 at 12:33pm PST

For a while, it looked like Maxime Boudreault was going to take the gold at Venice Beach after he won the first three events. But after struggling in the deadlift and sandbag toss, Licis and Shaw were able to catch up to him, and the Canadian captured the bronze. 
Here are some other highlights from the contest: 
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So inspiring to see our friend @smiles_taylor again at the Arnold Strongman USA. @schwarzenegger #Strongman
A post shared by Arnold Sports Festival (@arnoldsports) on Jan 19, 2020 at 8:21pm PST
Miles “Smiles” Taylor was christened Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “hero” after he managed to deadlift 200 pounds—more than twice his bodyweight. Taylor has cerebral palsy, but has not allowed his condition to stop him from becoming an avid weightlifter. 
In Santa Monica, Taylor once again inspired the crowd by lifting an Atlas stone over a bar. Arnold and the crowd loudly applauded him for his feat of strength. 
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YouTube Screenshot
Estonian Rauno Heinla is a mainstay in the deadlift at Arnold Strongman competitions — at the 2019 Arnold Sports Festival Brazil, he deadlifted 880 pounds for 14 reps. He’s also the reigning World’s Ultimate Deadlift champion, lifting 450 kg (992 pounds) in October. 
In Santa Monica, he managed to lift 775 pounds 9 times in 60 seconds to win the deadlift portion of the contest. 
Skip to 30:30 to watch him in action.

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Awesome day today in Santa Monica at the @schwarzenegger @arnoldsports Strongman qualifiers on the pier #bubbles
A post shared by JOE MANGANIELLO (@joemanganiello) on Jan 18, 2020 at 8:33pm PST
Actor, Dungeon & Dragons fanatic, and Sofia Vergara’s husband, Joe Manganiello, was on hand to catch all the action. The former Muscle & Fitness cover model also brought his dog, Bubbles, to the boardwalk to take in the competition along with Arnold and Vergara.
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Due to the recent devastation in Australia, a special part of the Arnold Strongman USA on January 18th will be dedicated to the victims and their families. Link in bio for tickets.
A post shared by Arnold Sports Festival (@arnoldsports) on Jan 5, 2020 at 10:56am PST
A portion of the competition’s revenue will go to support the Ventura County Fire Widows & Orphans Fund, the Santa Monica Firefighters Relief fund, and the CalFire Benevolent Foundation, all of which support California firefighters and their families. The Arnold Sports Festival also announced that money would go to the relief effort in Australia, which is experiencing unprecedented wildfires throughout the country that have killed hundreds of millions of animals and displaced thousands.
There was also a World’s Strongest Firefighter competition, with first responders from around the country showing off their strength for the crowd.

#repost @suckafreebg ・・・ This weekend was incredible! I was blessed with the opportunity to compete @arnoldsports #WorldsStrongestFirefighter competition @santamonicapier against some of the strongest, most honorable and coolest people I’ve ever had the honor to compete with. On top of that, I was able to pull out a hard fought win! In addition to that, we got to be witness to an amazing pro show that saw @martinslicis win by half a point! Huge thank you to @schwarzenegger @santamonicafirefighters for the opportunity! Congrats and thank you to all my fellow competitors who pushed me right to the final event @wonder.woman.13 @jpfitness19 @joe__cavin @teambolhar @sj_ass_etjr @jjohnson70383 @jbinder_tn @jayrod4733 and Cusick who’s IG I cant find.
A post shared by Arnold Sports Festival (@arnoldsports) on Jan 19, 2020 at 4:23pm PST
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