Meet the 'fittest dwarf on earth' who can lift four times his own bodyweight
People often say that size isn't everything, and that, regardless of your height, you're capable of achieving greatness. Think of some famous high-profile dwarf actors for example, like Warwick Davis or Peter Dinklage, who have successfully raised the profiles of short people with their incredible acting skills. But one area that's sadly lacking when it comes to representation is the world of fitness, sport, and weightlifting. However, maybe that perception is about to change.
Mikey Witous, who has dubbed himself "fittest dwarf on earth", is on a mission to prove that people with dwarfism can still have fitness goals, and lift weights that taller folk would baulk at. To that end, Mikey works out seven-days-a-week, and is now capable of squat lifting 34st, deadlifting 22st 8lb and benching 20st 3lb, even though he only weighs 9st 6lb. Because of his incredible gains, Mikey has become something of a social media star, and now boasts over 23,000 followers on Instagram.
Commenting on his skills, Mikey stated: "It’s great to see all this positivity in the way the world looks at little people now. It’s good to know for the next generation – and I try to be someone that shows them we can achieve anything we put our minds to. People shouldn’t second guess us." This is especially important to Mikey, since his wife Jessica and son Michael were also born with dwarfism.
"I’d be competing against average-sized people, so I’d be facing difficulties others didn’t, but I like to test myself," he stated, "I thrive off the challenge of competing. I chose those particular sports as I’ve never wanted to pick the easy option. You wouldn’t think a dwarf would want to do contact sports, but I excel when I’m pushed. I worked hard to ensure I wasn’t injured, and I was younger back then so nobody was big enough to really hurt anybody else.”
He added: "A few kids made fun of me, but kids will make fun of anything. You can get teased for having the wrong-coloured shoes. I’d get occasional ignorance and people reacting poorly to my disability, but most people were very accepting. Through sport, I gained exposure so people knew who I was anyway, and I also had a great group of friends who had my back. Because I’m competitive, if anybody did underestimate me, I’d be motivated to prove them wrong and show them I’m capable of far more than they think."
Mikey has even managed to achieve a black-belt in tae-kwon-do, and is currently training for an athletics event in Miami, where he hopes that his story will inspire others to hit the weights. So if your gym membership card has been lying in your wallet neglected, then maybe you should take a leaf out of Mikey's book and get back to it!