Eventful is an appropriate way to describe the past two months for Xtreme Powerlifting Coalition (XPC) Bench Bash competitor Brandon Smitley. This was not an event Smitley was planning on competing in, but after receiving a last-minute invite he knew this was an opportunity he could not pass up. However, in the weeks leading up to the competition, life refused to take a back seat to training and preparation. Smitley has recently become engaged, his fiancé and he are closing on a new house and he just began a new labor-intensive job on top of expanding his own training business (Smitley Performance Systems). Between both jobs, he is working roughly 65 hours a week and any free time is spent wedding planning. Finding the time to fit into his bench shirt, let alone train, has been quite difficult.

Despite the inability to train consistently and despite the fierce competition he will be up against, Smitley is looking to hit a new PR and place in the top 3 if not win the overall. He will be competing at 132 pounds, which makes him the lightest competitor by at least 50 pounds.


Having already competed professionally for many years, Smitley doesn’t feel the same game-day nerves that he felt early on in his career. Even with life as hectic as it is and despite not having his desired “bloat,” he feels relaxed and very confident. He has been able to continually smoke his opener in practice and although the idea of making a run at the all-time world record has been on his mind of late, he has decided to put that on the back burner for now.


Smitley is never shy when it comes to expressing his gratitude for elitefts, as well as the opportunities and platform they have afforded him. Being sponsored by elitefts is a true honor in his book and a responsibility he does not take lightly:

They have given me more than I can ever repay, and I'm thankful every day for the opportunity that God has given me to pursue my passion with a company that aligns with my own personal values.

Giving back to the community is an opportunity Smitley takes great pride in and he routinely spends hours upon hours rewriting and perfecting his blog posts and training logs to ensure the audience gets the quality information they deserve. Live, Learn, Pass On is at the core of elitefts and it is at the core of Brandon Smitley as well.


Brandon Smitley clipped the rack twice with 429-pounds. He was not allowed to try a third attempt per the judge's ruling.

I honestly knew going in it was a bad training cycle and I wasn't sure what to expect the day of the meet. This is just part of the sport. I am just ready to get married and looking forward to finding another meet to compete in later in the year.