Lovejoy Student Kade Ashley Excels
Lovejoy High School senior Kade Ashley is remarkable. So are his parents and sister Kyler, now on an athletic and academic scholarship. She is in the vanguard of a new NCAA sport, Tumbling and Acrobatics, at King University in Bristol Tennessee. In their day, both of their parents, Keith and Brandi Ashley, were also accomplished athletes and students. Keith spent twenty years in public service first in the military then as a police officer and finally as a flight nurse and medic before launching his own business, the Nine Band Brewery in Allen where Brandi runs all back of the house operations.
The Ashleys recall that when Kade was just five or six years old, whenever they visited Walmart, Kade would always ignore the toys and head straight for the sports department where he would check out all of the weight lifting equipment. Kade remembers, “I always wanted to be big but I don’t know why.” They finally bought him 2 lb. and 3 lb. weights; the plastic ones with pastel colors, and his long journey to the 2018 Texas Power Lifting Championships began. In 2017 Kade finished third in the Texas State Regional competition and also was named “Best Bench Presser in the Heavy Platform Division”.
This year, Kade became the first male Lovejoy student to have made it to the pinnacle of the sport, the State Power Lifting Championships in Abilene on March 24. With 505 other power lifters in his weight category, Kade, who weighs 225 pounds, finished 22nd by squat lifting 585 lbs. Think about that for a moment. If you lashed two motorcycles, say a Honda CRF250X (250 lbs.) and a Yamaha WR250F (252 lbs.) to your back, you would only be squatting 502 pounds. You would have to find 83 more pounds to lift to match what Kade did at the State Championships. Overall, Kade lifted 1,505 pounds in the competition.
While this kind of athletic performance is amazing, the daily preparation is even more extraordinary and grueling. Kade rises every day at 4:35 in order to get his workout in before school. After school, he works at Tom Thumb in a variety of roles from 5:00 pm until 10:00 pm. To stay strong and build muscle he consumes 5,500 carefully measured calories of food daily. His diet, which he meticulously records every day, consists primarily of protein, ideally 1.5 grams of protein for every pound of weight, and high calorie starches like potatoes. To understand what 5,500 calories of food means, think about eating 76.5 eggs everyday --- not that Kade does that. Everything he consumes is carefully planned and measured and is appropriate for an athlete that burns calories at a phenomenal rate.Kade began serious power lifting training as an adjunct for his role on the Lovejoy varsity football team where he is a valued utility player at defensive end, tight end and fullback. Kade has been on varsity teams since age 14 and is currently the seventh fastest football player in the 40-yard dash. He plays both offense and defense and has earned both an academic (his Lovejoy GPA is 3.65) and athletic scholarship to college in September at Southwestern Assemblies of God in Waxahachie where he intends to pursue a degree in criminal justice. Like his dad, Kade envisions a career in public service as a police officer. When he leaves Lovejoy High School in June, Kade will leave behind a series of power lifting records that are certain to remain in place for a long time to come.
**Article printed in the April 5h issue