I love posting images from the American Roadtrip properties made by Retro Brand frequently on their Instagram feed. A few weeks ago I made a post featuring a Waffle House image and made sure to include the mandatory hashtag #WaffleHouse. After a good bunch of “likes” I was curious to click the #WaffleHouse tag to see what results would pop up. The first image that came up was of a bearded man in a Waffle House trucker cap who was clearly picking up a vehicle off the ground with his hands. Yikey! I was intrigued and instantly went to his profile. The brief interview below features the man behind that profile; Mike Sidwell, aka, “The Relentless Juggernaut,” and self proclaimed “Waffle House Junkie, Waffle House Monster, & Athlete Under the Yellow Sign.”
Andy: How and/or why did you come up with the nickname “Relentless Juggernaut” – did you come up with it for yourself or did someone give you that title?
R. Juggernaut: I was referenced as relentless and/or juggernaut by several people at one point or another. I liked both references. I embraced both of the definitions of these words and put them together to help motivate me every single day. A Relentless Juggernaut is a force that does not stop, nor can it be stopped!
Andy: I will not try to stop you, sir. How long have you been involved in weight training and can you give us more specifics on the type of competitions you enter – Strong man, Crossfit, etc.?
R. Juggernaut: I’ve been training and competing in Strongman Competitions for about three years. Events include things like the car deadlift, log press overhead, stone loads, yoke carry, giant globe dumbbell presses, and several others. I’ve competed at Nationals for the past three years and competed at the World championships last year. I had always looked at bodybuilding magazines and aspired to be a larger than life individual. After a short and unimpressive bodybuilding career, someone suggested I try Strongman. I had always loved watching the sport on ESPN, but never realized I had the opportunity to compete in it. After the suggestion, I immediately traveled to the closest strongman facility that weekend. The moment I touched the first implement, I became hooked. I’m unable to put my passion for this sport fully into words. This sport is engrained in my soul and cannot be turned off. Everything I do revolves around it, including my job as a Registered Nurse. As long as my son continues to enjoy the life he deserves, I’ll sleep on the sidewalk to ensure I reach my ultimate destination in this sport. I dream of the day I’m collapsed in victory at Nationals crying uncontrollably.
Andy: I don’t like to see a grown man cry, but in this case I look forward to being a witness. Seriously, it’s refreshing to see someone as fervently emotional and intense about your sport as you are. Also love that you are a self described “Waffle House Junkie/Monster” & love rocking our Waffle House gear. Can you really get Monster Muscles like yours by eating at Waffle House? Also have to ask what is it that you love about the American Roadtrip Waffle House gear?
R. Juggernaut: Obviously I love Waffle House. I started tagging myself as the #WaffleHouseJunkie out of fun and complete seriousness at the same time. If I’m competing or staying out of town, I’ll pull up my Waffle House Locator app on my phone. I’ll drive two hours farther to Waffle House before I settle at the local Denny’s, IHOP or whatever else there is and I have. I’ve visited more locations than I can count and met a ton of cool people along the way. My favorite experience was during the 2012 Nationals in Tunica, MS. I had recently cut twenty + pounds in five days to make the 175 weight class. I had 24 hours to hydrate and eat it back on. I drank four gallons of crystal light and ate five full-beyond-full meals at Waffle House. The next day I was competing at 205 lbs. My only regret was not eating there a sixth time. Whether I’m cutting weight or enjoying being a bit heavier between contests, I’ve been able to accomplish the goal with Waffle House. When I’m loose with my diet or refueling post weight cut, I’m slamming pecan waffles, grits, raisin toast, hash browns, bacon, and a cheesesteak omelet. When I’m in a heavy weight cut, I go zero carbs except two meals a week. My order becomes bacon, sausage and omelets. On the two meals with carbs, I’ll have regular hash browns and raisin toast.
American Roadtrip and Retro Brand caught my eye on Instagram immediately when I saw their Waffle House line. It immediately trumped the other Waffle House apparel I had. As a whole, Retro Brand has so many awesome designs, is quick to respond, prompt shipping w/easy return instructions form (not that you would unless ordering wrong size), high quality material, great fit, and a cool American Roadtrip logo in the neck and jock-tag on front. Most importantly, they make the best Waffle House gear to feed my addiction.
Andy: Yes, it’s quite obvious you’re a Waffle House Monster, and thanks for the kind words. Now about that Beard (you should check out our friends at Beardgang.com Mike!)…..
R. Juggernaut: My beard is similar to my introduction to strongman. One day I decided to not shave (don’t we all?). I’d never envisioned myself with a beard. Once it grew out, I loved it and knew I’d never shave again. I honestly feel stronger with it. My beard is not a trend. I view it as one of the curves of a unique fingerprint that makes me, me.
Andy: (Note to self: Grow beard) Clearly you are a highly motivated work out (and waffle house eating) machine. Can you give us a few daily inspirational quotes to live by?
R. Juggernaut: My personal quote is, “BE AGGRESSIVE AND WITHOUT FEAR ON THE PATH TO SUCCESS.” And this is more of a thought than a quote – Don’t go through your life trying to live up to others expectations, and trying to settle in with the social norms. Be yourself. Find your passion. Chase it forever. You’ll never be happier than when you are doing and chasing what you love.
Andy: Your thought makes for a great quote, sir.
I want to thank Mike for his time today, and more importantly, I want thank him for his contagious and positive attitude that makes me want to get up off my butt and grab life by the cojones! …and go to the nearest Waffle House. Thanks again Mike…
Mike Sidwell is a Nationally ranked 175 lb., American strongman proudly representing BigThunder96.com, Logan University of Chiropractic BIOFREEZE Center, Reaction Nutrition, Black Legion Gear, 1740Handmade, & Retro Brand – American Roadtrip of course!
****Mike also wants the folks at Waffle House to take note; “If Waffle House is reading this, I love you and will do whatever it takes to represent you. Please refer to my instagram site here, or my facebook page dedicated strictly to Waffle House here. Thanks!!”****