After Hidilyn Diaz’s historic win at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, many took to social media to express their interest to try their hand at weightlifting.
Her gold medal came with other shiny things, literally and figuratively. But of course, nothing can compare to the amazing opportunity she had to bring pride to her own country.
To this day, Diaz is still the talk of the town. While it seemed that she did it all in only three minutes, behind that were long years of setbacks, triumphs, and other in-betweens since she started weightlifting at 11.
For those who have been inspired to follow Hidilyn's footsteps, Marlon Lugue, who is also the managing director of Kinetix Lab Gym, shared with PhilSTAR L!fe what it will take for you to get started in the sport.
Train like you compete
First things first, Lugue pointed out the importance of training like you compete once you decide to get in the game.
“Anyone who aspires to be a competitive weightlifter should train with regular equipment,” he said. “By doing so, minimal adjustment is required as you transition from your training facility all the way to the competitive platform.”
The quality of the instruction you will receive usually determines the direction and duration of your commitment to the sport.
He recommended making sure to have access to the essentials: Olympic standard bars and bumper plates.
“Having a squat rack or squat stand is also an important consideration so that auxiliary training can be carried out,” he added.
Swipe through the gallery below to know where you can get your hands on the aforementioned workout equipment that can help you get started.
Hiring a competent coach is also a big plus.
“The quality of the instruction you will receive usually determines the direction and duration of your commitment to the sport,” Lugue said. “You will establish a better physical foundation, develop the right habits, adhere longer, and most importantly, you’ll be less likely to injure or hurt yourself.”
Consistency is very important and it can start from setting achievable goals for yourself.
“For example, a kilo per month increase in a lift may seem small at first, but looking at it from a bigger picture means you being able to lift 12kg heavier in a span of 12 months. That’s 25 lbs!” he explained.
Patience is just as paramount in the process. “Learn how to run your own race. Stop comparing your progress or the lack thereof with other people,” he stressed. “Make a plan, stick with it, then adjust as you go along.”
Lastly, have fun and enjoy the process. This not only includes celebrating your small wins, but also sharing the changes that will happen to you with your support system. “As you become stronger and better, you will find renewed confidence and vigor. Savor those moments with the people around you,” he concluded.
Article thumbnails from Hidilyn Diaz's Instagram page