The Polish athlete is ready to shine again on the strongman’s biggest stage.
Mateusz Kieliszkowski was hoping to finally break through with a win as World’s Strongest Man (WSM) in 2022. However, about two months before the competition, the Polish strongman retired after suffering a leg injury. After a three-year absence from WSM, Kieliszkowski is set to return April 19-23, 2023 in Myrtle Beach, SC. It seems like he’s pulling out all the stops. Literally.
On April 12, 2023, Kieliszkowski shared an Instagram video of himself Towing a 32 ton (64,000 lb) truck. Kieliszkowski also lists the weight as 70,547 pounds in his post, but that’s likely a typo or conversion error. The athlete writes that the monstrous truck-pulling feat is the final stop on his 2023 WSM prep before allowing time to adequately recover his strength.
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In his post, Kieliszkowski explains that he really only spent three weeks on hardcore preparation focused on WSM 2023. He claimed his last real WSM prep in 2019 was much more comprehensive and may have led to his second straight runner-up finish. On that occasion, the athlete did not explain exactly why he took less time to prepare, possibly related to schedule delays related to his leg injury. The athlete also competed in the 2023 Arnold Strongman Classic (ASC) in early March, where he took second place. This competition could have shuffled around his training schedules as his competitive energy was temporarily diverted elsewhere.
Therefore, Kieliszkowski does not have very high expectations for his individual performance. He will be content with a solid qualification to build on with patience and planning for the future.
“Three weeks late is not enough time to work miracles,” Kieliszkowski wrote in a translation. “That’s why I don’t ask much of myself. The goal is to get to them [2023 WSM] Final and then everything will be clear in the process. Next recovery, back to training and old form and then hitting 2024 with full force.”
At 29, Kieliszkowski is one of the more established modern elite strongmen with the profile that underpins it. According to Strongman Archives, in addition to his WSM runners-up in 2018-2019, Kieliszkowski is a five-time Poland’s Strongest Man (PSM) champion (2015-2019). He is also a two-time winner of the Giants Live World Tour Finals (2018-2019) and placed first at the 2019 World’s Ultimate Strongman.
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It’s clear that Kieliszkowski has emerged as a strong powerhouse to be reckoned with in the late 2010s. His performance as runner-up at ASC 2023 could be proof that The Polish Terminator is on his way back to prominence. Even though Kieliszkowski thinks he’s behind the eighth with WSM 2023, the titan could very well surprise many people in Myrtle Beach.
Featured image: @kieliszkowskimateusz on Instagram