Rolling Out

Tamara Walcott made history by powerlifting 636 pounds

The all-time world record-holding powerlifter is opening doors for women in fitness
Tamara Walcott made history by powerlifting 636 pounds
Tamara Walcott (Photo courtesy of SMUUV Studios)

Tamara Walcott is remarkably good at setting goals and creating challenges that strengthen self-discipline. The single mother found herself lost in food addiction and chose to adopt a new lifestyle that would eventually earn her a Guinness world record. Walcott, also known as the Plus Size Fit Queen, is a force in the fitness world who now holds the record for the heaviest deadlift by a woman.

Walcott was morbidly obese in 2015. “I told myself I have to live, and I have to survive. I was almost 500 pounds, and I know that to change, you have to change what’s on the inside first,” Walcott shared with rolling out.

She turned to powerlifting as an outlet to release life’s stressors and lost over 100 pounds. Now, she shares her story with women worldwide who want to change their lives and commit to a healthy lifestyle.

Tamara Walcott made history by powerlifting 636 pounds

What are the benefits of powerlifting?

You can burn more fat when you build muscle than running on the treadmill. I ensure that when I’m resting, my metabolism is still actively going and burning fat. It strengthens you no matter what the scale reads. I go off of body composition, so I weigh 275 pounds right now, but I can lift 500-600 pounds because of my strength training. 

When did you realize you were becoming the strongest woman in a male-dominated industry?

I realized I was making a pivotal turn when men came up to me, commending me for what I did in the sport and chasing the numbers they were chasing. They were like, “I can’t wait ’till the day that I’m able to pull 636 pounds,” … just [to put] that into perspective. Then all the young girls came out of the woodwork like, “Hey? I’ve always wanted to be strong but was afraid to be strong. But now I see you … a mom and a regular person doing extraordinary things.”

What motivates you to keep pursuing this lifestyle?

When I first started this sport, there weren’t a lot of Black women, but just the number of Black women that I see in the sport now, who are no longer afraid to be strong or come out and say, “I’m a part of the community,” has been very heartfelt and warm to see.
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