The bodybuilding world has suffered the loss of a legend. Konstantins Konstantinovs, a world record holder, passed on Sunday, October 28th at the age of 40. Those close to him have chosen not to make the cause of death public, but there are reports his bodybuilding and lifestyle was not the cause of death. His death was announced by bodybuilder Cailer Woolman with a heartfelt Instagram post.
Konstantinovs holds the world record for raw deadlift without a belt and was only beaten recently in the top deadlift with or without a belt. In 2009, the record was set when he lifted 939.2 pounds – all without a belt. The record was held up until 2016 when Eddie Hall lifted 1,102.3 pounds – but this time with a belt. Kontantinovs’ record still holds as the record for raw deadlift without a belt.
Konstantins started the athletic lifestyle early in his life with gymnastics and followed up with judo and strength training. He started around the age of 16 with powerlifting, as he stated in an interview from 2010. The first competition where Konstantins placed was in 2002 at the WPC Junior World Powerlifting Championships where he took home the 1st place medal. The next year he took home the 1st place spot in the GPC World Powerlifting Championships as well.
There is a quote from Konstantins from an interview where he said, “You should always keep in mind that this day may be the last for us. The ‘next competition’ will never happen, if you can lift the record today, never postpone it for tomorrow”. He was an avid reader of poetry and would read before a competition to get ready and in the right mindset. He said his favorite poet was Vladimir Mayakovsky from the Soviet Union.
Other bodybuilders around the world paid tribute to Konstantins with posts on Instagram. Bodybuilder Dan Green wrote about meeting Konstantinovs and his “gracious and warm” attitude he had. He recalled a time that his booming voice and his “lift or die” mentality at warm-ups would intimidate everyone around him. Konstantins made an impact on many bodybuilders’ lives and will live on in many powerlifting competitions for years to come.