Coming from someone who has been pretty successful in powerlifting, I proudly say that I represent this sport well and love it with all of my heart. So much goes into it and here's why you can't just “like" this sport.
Depending on how good of a coach you have, you could spend more than 15 hours in the gym per week. I've had coaches that would hold 30-minute practices and leave me wondering why we even came that day, and I've also had two coaches that spent multiple hours In the gym with us: that's when we saw the results. That's when we started winning state, national, and world titles. It's all about dedication and the time you put in.
Along with those hours in the gym comes the willpower to be the best you can be. Whether it's squat day, bench day, or the best day ever—deadlift day— without giving 110% each time, there is no way you'll ever be who you want to be.
There was not a single time coach said "10 sets of 10 on squat today" that we didn't want to drop kick him. You'd be two sets in and so convinced that the world was going to end and that you would never see the light at the end of this squat day. But it wasn't about that; it was about being on the fifth set and treating it like it was the first. It was being on that last set of 10 and not cheating a rep, because like all good coaches say, when you cheat a rep you're only cheating yourself.
Passion is the one thing that got me through this sport. I love powerlifting. For four years straight I slept, ate, and breathed powerlifting. November through April was go-time and we never put anything before it. Without passion, there's nothing there to get you through the hours of practice, the pain of knee wraps, the bruises from suits, or the anxiety of your next meet.
I owe so much to the world of powerlifting; from being an inexperienced freshman to being on the World’s powerlifting team and competing against the best of the best, this sport made me who I am today and I thank God for that. I've met some of my best friends, some of my enemies, and, most importantly, I found myself. I am who I am today because I love powerlifting.
Also shout out to the people I owe this sport to: Coach Skipp, the most amazing coach I could ask for; Coach Urbina for being my mentor through it all; my other 3 coaches I had the chance of working with throughout my career; all the World Coaches; and my favorite people ever, the ASH Powerlifting team, a team that will always hold a special place in my heart.