THE world’s strongest kid who became “addicted” to bodybuilding after he started lifting when he was just 11 looks unrecognisable today

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Jake Schellenschlager, now 22, set world records for his weight class in 2014 after devoting himself to training – and he still lifts three times a day.

Jake Schellenschlager started lifting weights when he was just 11
Jake Schellenschlager started lifting weights when he was just 11

He started bodybuilding at the age of 11 when he saw his dad lifting weights in the garage.

Jake, from Maryland, said he immediately started lifting for two hours every day – and soon became “addicted” after seeing the results.

Instead of playing video games like other children his age, he was committed to becoming the world’s strongest kid.

And when he was just 14, he could deadlift 300lbs.

He broke the world record for the squat for his age and weight at the Powerlifting Bench Press Championships in York, Pennsylvania.

It was his dream to continue competing and setting records in his weight class.

He told The Sun Online: “Being a child bodybuilder was a cool feeling. I was around it so much in my younger years watching my cousin Joshua, my brothers and my father lift in our house growing up.

“I had all the game systems there if I wanted to play, but that’s not what I wanted to do – I got bored constantly watching them workout.

“I wanted to do the same thing so one day I started lifting. When I was 11 I was watching my dad lift and I couldn’t just watch anymore, I had to do it.

“That day me and my father knew my future was going to be bright for lifting.”

He added: “There was no pressure at all it was something I wanted to do.

“I could have been playing videos games or with my friends, but I decided I wanted to become the world’s strongest kid.”

Nowadays, Jake said he’s still lifting up to three times a day – and is training even harder than he was before.

He said: “I’m stronger and heavier than I was before. I plan to compete this year 2022 in both bodybuilding and powerlifting.

“Being an IFBB Pro in bodybuilding has always been my dream goal and then I got into powerlifting with the help of my coach Mike Sarni.

“It was always back and forth with me, I could never decide what I wanted to move forward with, bodybuilding or powerlifting, so I trained in both. I have built a lot of experience competing in both over the years.”

Jake Schellenschlager set world records when he was just 14
Jake took part in competitions when he was just a teenager

Jake added: “Competing in professional bodybuilding has always been my dream, but I always love setting world records and making history.”

The 22-year-old, who frequently posts pictures of his fitness progress to his nearly 3,000 followers, said he wanted to change the perception of young kids doing weightlifting.

“It’s hard for a young kid to commit to working out everyday because it’s something you have to dedicate yourself to.

“I was always ahead of my time. I feel like I wanted to be the one to show kids around the world that anything is possible if you set your mind to it.”

When he was a teen, Jake’s trainer, Mike, praised his mental strength.

Mike told the Washington Post: “He doesn’t feel he can be defeated. It is that inner strength that tells him, ‘I can do this’.

“Usually, you only get that in older, more mature people.”

Jake’s dad, Chris, added: “Some don’t believe it is good to have kids weight lifting too early.

“But Jake never complains about pain or hurting, and he gets regular check-ups.”

He added: “You don’t want your kid to be sitting on a couch and playing video games.”

He frequently posts photos of his gym progress on his Instagram account
He frequently posts photos of his gym progress on his Instagram account
Credit: Instagram / Jake Schellenschlager
Jake, now 22, looks unrecognisable eight years later
Jake, now 22, looks unrecognisable eight years later
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