World's strongest men to battle it out in Dubai on Friday

Top Stories

Worlds strongest men to battle it out in Dubai on Friday
World's Ultimate Strongman (WUS) contestant, Robert Oberst.

Dubai - 14 giant athletes will take to the Bab Al Shams arena to participate in six grueling events that will push their strength to the limits.


Kelly Clarke

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Published: Fri 26 Oct 2018, 4:45 PM

On Friday, Dubai will play host to 14 of the biggest men in the world as they battle it out to be crowned the World's Ultimate Strongman (WUS).
For the first time in Dubai, the 'Beasts In the Middle East' competition (held under the guidance of Dubai Sports Council), will see the muscle-bound men vying to win a total prize fund of $150,000; with $75,000 going to the winner.
Weighing a combined total of 2,314kg, the 14 giant athletes will take to the Bab Al Shams arena to participate in six grueling events that will push their strength to the limits.
In a chat with Khaleej Times, Eddie Hall (the 2017 World's Strongest Man), and American competitor Robert Oberst tell us what being a strongman is all about.
"Obsession, dedication and consistency. That's how I won the Strongman title last year. Sheer obsession," Hall, who is the Ambassador for this year's WUS, said.
"For me, a strongman is an individual who strives for the best; it's a chance to find out who the alpha is. When I won, I felt I had achieved all I could as a strongman. I solidified myself as the strongest man that ever lived, so the day I won, I drew the line on my obsession and retired."
But for Oberst, a fairly new face on the strongman circuit having only gone professional five years ago, retirement is a long way off.
"In this profession your peak really depends on when you start. The average man's peak strength is between the ages of 32 and 35 but from the sport perspective, five to seven years in is when you peak. Right now I'm five years in and I'm 33, so I'm feeling alright. Maybe you'll see me with that big cheque on Friday, how about that!"
Talking about the rivalry between competitors, Oberst said it's only natural in a sport like strongman.
"There is this thing called big guy beef. When big guys are around normal people we don't have to flex up. But when we all walk in a room together, we're all sizing each other up. You wanna see how they look, how they're walking, so you can get a little gauge as to where they are at."
Fancying his chances for a podium finish, even a win, Oberst said the Middle Eastern climate will definitely play in his favour.
"I think a lot of the guys will have an issue with it because they come from cold climates. I live in Texas so I'm ready for it. For me, it's cold here right now, a little chilly. So I think it could play to my advantage. I can walk around saying 'oh, it's kinda cold isn't it', just to mess with them and get in their heads."
When it comes to his strengths, Oberst said the overhead medley, where athletes run through a series of weights lifting them over their heads is his favoutite.
"My least favourite is the deadlift. I played American football for a long time and in football we didn't deadlift, we did power cleans, explosive stuff, so I've only been deadlifting for five years now, but I think I'm ready."
Kicking off at 3pm, the competitors will start with a truck pull, And with high expectations for the big event, Oberst already knows what he'll be doing with the prize money.
"If I win the money, well, I have a three-year-old son so it's all going into the bank for his college fund. I like money, but I like saving it too, I'm not like one of these big spenders, these flips flops I'm wearing only cost a dollar."

An insight into Eddie Hall's daily food regime
Monday to Sunday, seven days a week for 12 months straight. No days off.

2am - Wake up. Eat fillet steak and drink protein shake. Go back to sleep

7am - Wake up. Eat a full English breakfast, a litre of ice cream. Go back to sleep.

9am - Wake up. Eat a bucket of porridge, four or five pieces of fruit, several packets of beef jerky, a litre of cranberry juice. Go back to sleep.

11am - Wake up. Have physiotherapy for 1.5 hours. Steak, full chicken, bucket of rice and pasta, half a family size cheesecake, one litre of ice cream. Go back to sleep.

3.30pm - Wake up. 5-10 tuna sandwiches, flapjacks, beef jerky, fruit. Drive to gym. Drink 2 litres of Lucozade, a litre of cranberry juice, several packets of beef jerky, raw fillet steak, protein shake, a litre of coconut water.

8pm - One hour stretch in a hydro pool, one hour hot-cold treatment. Steak, two chickens, bucket of rice and pasta, the other half of the family size cheesecake.

11pm - Several protein bars, protein shake. Go to sleep.

Eddie Hall.
Eddie Hall.

More news from