On Sept. 19, 2022, Larry “Wheels” Williams shared an Instagram video where he successfully locked out 15 reps of a 224.5-kilogram (495-pound) back squat raw with wraps. The athlete wore a lifting belt and knee wraps and used a safety squat bar — which can limit shoulder rotation and eases potential stress on them.
Wheels says he used the safety squat bar because of shoulder inflammation from some arm wrestling and traditional back squats with a straight barbell. Wheels set out for an AMRAP (As Many Reps As Possible) squat set but apparently “left a few reps in the tank” as an added precaution because he hadn’t squatted in a while.
[Related: Back Squat Vs. Front Squat: Which, When, and Why]
Wheels’ leg endurance and power feat is related to his preparation for a “mock” powerlifting meet while on Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT). While he hasn’t disclosed a concrete date, Wheels plans to test out his strength on the powerlifting staples of the squat, bench press, and deadlift.
Wheels’ Switch to TRT
In a late-August 2022 video on his YouTube channel, Wheels revealed that he would stop using steroids “indefinitely.” He maintained that he had been on some degree of performance enhancing drugs for the last decade and wanted to see what he could accomplish without their assistance. As a substitute, because the athlete’s body no longer produced testosterone naturally, he started using TRT.
With a goal of using 175 milligrams of TRT per week, Wheels would continue pushing forward with his general fitness. If a future blood work appointment with a doctor makes clear that Wheels needs less TRT, he will then decrease his dose accordingly.
Some early results from Wheels’ transition to TRT include the athlete showing off a noticeably leaner physique in September 2022 after apparently using the therapy for about a month. A week later, the athlete would simultaneously test his raw bench press and squat strength. He would cap his bench press routine by finishing a five-rep set of 224 kilograms (494 pounds). In the first instance that Wheels had squatted since injuring his back and withdrawing from the 2022 Middle East’s Strongest Man, his last set was 269.9 kilograms (595.1 pounds) for five reps.
For context, according to Wheels’ social media, the most he’s ever bench pressed raw was a successful 307-kilogram (675-pound) rep from May 2022. Meanwhile, Wheels once squatted 430.9 kilograms (950 pounds) during a September 2021 training session.
[Related: How to Do the Bulgarian Split Squat for Leg Size, Strength, and Mobility]
Editor’s Note: Breaking Muscle is not making a moral or ethical statement about the athlete’s actions. This article reports on what the athlete notes about themselves. Breaking Muscle is not a certified medical resource and does not endorse the use of performance enhancing drugs.
In late-July 2022, after revealing his back injury, Wheels had noted that his long-term training goal was to attain a 453.6-kilograms (1,000-pound) deadlift. This might have been around when he started using TRT. At the time of this writing, without steroids in the picture, the athlete has not clarified whether he would still push for that hallowed mark in the immediate future.
For now, it seems Wheels wants to focus on what his body is capable of on its own.
Featured image: @larrywheels on Instagram