Relentless Detroit 2014

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter you have been seeing me post the fundraiser link for Relentless, but I never talked about it much on here yet.

When I first tore my bicep in March of 2013 I was down on myself for it, as injuries will do to someone.

During that time I gave myself a goal, to lift in Relentless. Before that I haven’t competed in anything since Fall of 2010 and even in my last two strongman contests I ended up with not being able to lift without pain for a while, due to my back.

As it goes for me, I do what I have to do to work around the major and minor injuries and make no excuses for it.

I started doing some bodybuilding training to build more muscle, cleaning up my diet to look and feel better and getting some gym mojo back.

In the process of all of that I finished my e-book; which has been well received by the people who use it.

I put heavy lifting on the back burner for quite a while as I was enjoying the progress I was making training how I was.

Enter Relentless Minnesota.

With a little over two weeks to go for their fundraising, and for the meet day, I contacted Rob Luyando of Team Mecca Barbell, and let him know I was going to sell my book for the last two weeks of the deadline and donate 100% of the proceeds to Relentless through his fundraising page.

Rob was on board fully.

I expected a few hundred dollars but I never expected 900 of them in two weeks for a book that has been on the market for a year at that point.

Thanks to Drywall for linking this fundraising attempt to his page and thanks to the others who spread the word, I was left happy that a nice bit of coin was raised in a short time.

After I donated it and thanked people publicly for it on my page, Jo Jordan replied, “why don’t you compete? If you do it, I will do it with you.”

I sent the request to Rob that day and the rest is history. I am lifting with Team Mecca Barbell at this meet.

I am not an elite lifter, I considered myself an athlete first over anything as I had a very personally satisfying competitive career with rugby. I lift because I want to push my own personal limits and have fun doing it. I have zero cares about records or not a care in the world if anyone beats me or I beat them. This in purely about pushing myself, with my limits and my goals.

Having said that, I am very happy to be a part of this event, not only for giving me back a definable goal to shoot for but to help out these children who need all the help they can get.

By now you may be wondering what exactly is Relentless. I saved the best, and most important, for last.

From their website (which does a better job explaining it than I ):

Relentless mission – To build relationships, change lives and to serve God by uniting strong men and women with even stronger children.

The Relentless Detroit Foundation, in collaboration with Detroit Barbell and Kirby Church, was created to raise money, awareness and support for families with children diagnosed with life threatening illnesses.

The foundation raises the bulk of the money donated by hosting a yearly powerlifting meet. Power lifters from the United States and Canada come together for this event after spending months training and raising funds to support the families involved. This event is modeled after a powerlifting fundraiser that takes place annually in Minnesota.

Relentless Detroit and Relentless Minnesota work closely to support each other during both events.

Leading up to the Relentless Detroit powerlifting meet other fundraisers are coordinated by Relentless Detroit supporters. These events help cover operating costs associated with the meet, in addition to funds for the families. The events that take place outside of the two day powerlifting meet also facilitate relationships between the lifters, families and everyone involved.

This is truly where you see the support and awareness come into action. Our goal is to not only raise money for these families, but also help strengthen and add to their existing support system.

Additional support for Relentless Detroit comes from Detroit Barbell, Kirby Church, Nubreed Nutrition, Randal Whately, Walmart and other local businesses. Operating costs include, but are not limited to, design and printing of promotional materials including flyers, tickets, t-shirts, etc.

These items are used to promote the event and also sold to raise awareness and additional funds for the families. All man power to plan, coordinate, and operate this event is volunteered. The event venue and equipment used are donated by Detroit Barbell and Kirby Church.

Read more on the Relentless Detroit site.

At the recent Relentless Minnesota meet, they raised over 200 thousand dollars in donations, with 100% of them going directly to helping the kids. Sit on that for a minute; a powerlifting meet raising that amount of money through a single event. That shows you the power of people coming together for a common goal. It makes me proud to say I am a part of something like this.

As a lifter in this meet I am raising money via my website, family, friends and supporters for this amazing charity and awesome kids.

I ask of you to give what you can afford, share this post anywhere you choose to and be a part of helping to make a child’s life easier so they can fight with all they have to defeat their illnesses.

This is not just a meet put on twice a year, this is a year round venture.

To give you a small example of what Relentless means to the participants and the children, please view the below videos.

Relentless Minnesota Photo Montage video on Vimeo

Pretty heartwarming isn’t it?

If you feel compelled to give, please do. The link to donate is at the bottom of this post and also in the sidebar.

Thank you very much.

Jay Ashman Relentless Fundraising page.

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