Special Olympics


In or outside the gym, Anaconda power lifters not letting disability hold them back

Posted at 1:40 PM, May 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-12 10:28:05-04

ANACONDA — You could likely fill an entire journal with excuses people have cooked up for skipping the gym.

Too busy. Too tired. Too overwhelmed.

Just don't plan on seeing Alex Fitzpatrick or Cody Amundson scrawling in any entries on that list.

The Special Olympic power lifters, both 20-year-old Anaconda residents, will compete at a World Association of Benchers and Deadlifers (WABDL) meet in Missoula on Saturday and will then begin training for the 2021 State Summer Games.

Roomates and self-described best friends, Alex and Cody haven't allowed disability to detract them from their objective -- taking home some hardware.

"My goal is to come in first place," said Cody.

The pair met while juniors at Anaconda High School, with Cody moving to the Smelter City from Manhattan.

Alex developed a interest in power lifting and soon Cody joined him.

A veteran lifter named Charlie Farmer was asked if he'd be interested in training the two as members of the Smelter City All Stars. He decided to give it a try.

"They were naturals," said Charlie, who noted that Cody and Alex cannot wait to get into the gym when they see him pulling up. "They jumped right in."

Alex and Cody have exceled as much in the weight room as they have outside of it, with both living largely independent lives. Both hold steady jobs, with Alex working at Stoke's and Cody at Albertson's.

They bring the same level of determination to work -- after once injuring his shoulder, Cody could found at Albertson's the next day baggging groceries one-handed -- that they do to the gym.

"I can't believe the work ethic," Charlie said. "I wish everybody had their work ethic."