That dead week between Christmas and New Year has always been about The World’s Strongest Man on TV. But now there’s a new kid in town – the world’s strongest boy.
Timofey Klevakin is in better shape at age eleven than most of us will be in our lives. He has been attending his local gym regularly since he was five and can tow a car and even flip a tractor tyre using raw muscle power.
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His proud dad Arseniy says Timofey caught the body-building bug after watching other people at the gym and trying to imitate them: "He just played at first, then he jumped rope, took up hoola-hoop and ran with it," he said.
"Then we noticed that he started to take light dumbbells, repeated after me and [other] people, looked at how they did it, tried to raise their dumbbells."
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Timofey, from Shalya in Russia, weighs just under six stone but can lift weights in excess of 16 stone.
Some people have voiced concerns that so much exercise might be bad for the boy. Not least his own mother, but dad Arseniy says that his son has regular medical checkups to make sure he’s not harming himself with his constant exercising: "Every three or four months we are followed up with by doctors and surgeons,” he said.
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"Of course, everyone says that he doesn't need such pressures at his age. But there are not any pathologies, and I think there won't be," he added.
Excessive exercise can be linked to a number of conditions including heart irregularities, weakened bones, immune system problems and even the rather nasty-sounding leaky gut syndrome in which the gut lining weakens, allowing germs and toxins to pass into the bloodstream.
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That in turn can lead to complications such as Multiple Sclerosis and Chronic Fatigue.
So if you were feeling guilty about lying on your sofa while everyone else seems – like Timofey – to be gearing up for New Year New Me challenges, there’s your excuse.
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