Morning in, morning out, for 14 years Ron Cooper has been lifting weights before most people lift themselves out of bed.
His 5 a.m. cup of coffee is push-ups, pull-ups, chest presses and dips.
This Sunday, he'll put all that strength training on the line and try to dip into the Guinness Book of World Records for two records: most push-ups with a pack; and most pull-ups.
He'll be wearing a 40-pound pack during the push-ups segment. He has a minute to bang out the reps.
That's two records. The competition goes off at 11:15 a.m. at the Lynch Van Otterloo YMCA.
The 33-year-old financial planner is father to two young children and, along with his wife, Katie, a runner at heart. Exercise and athletics have a special place in Ron Cooper's life.
He was a basketball player and track athlete in high school in Chappaqua, N.Y., and ran the 800 as a freshman member of the Boston College track team.
His future wife was an All-American runner at Boston University, setting a school record in the 5,000 meters.
Today they run together.
The Marblehead couple has two daughters, Emily, who is 3, and Ashley, who is 1.
"Sometimes my girls climb on my back while I'm doing push ups, while other times they'll hang from my legs while I'm doing pull ups," he said.
The fourth love of Cooper's life is strength training.
The attraction started in high school as he headed into his senior year. A friend introduced him to weight training.
He found that his body — now 5'10', 165lbs. — responded well to the training. He could run faster, jump higher and was a better basketball player.
"(Fourteen) years later I haven't missed more than one consecutive week of strength training, and when I do take time off it's because my body and muscles are screaming at me to rest," he said.
A crowd of supporters will be screaming for Cooper Sunday - he was first intrigued by the Guinness Book of World Records as a child and now he has a chance to make his mark.