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Jessica is our 2016 Olympic Hopeful and Sarah is our 2012 Olympian in Weightlifting. We're setting out to be "Pretty Strong" and we encourage you to do the same.


Saturday, July 13, 2013

Sarah's July 2013 so far


     I got back from Pan Ams and felt dehydrated and cranky. I have been frustrated with Arizona weather being hot. Doesn't Arizona know what I just went through at Pan Ams?! Well, being hot, sweaty and grumpy made me unexcited to train. I did it nonetheless. I mean, I do have Nationals coming up. It took me about a week to get back into the swing of things.
    Friday morning, I had a great session front squatting 195 kgs or 429 lbs. This was a personal record for me. The plan was to do 180, 185, and 190 kgs for one repetition each. I missed 185, made 185, went to 190 (all of which felt heavier than it looked.) Coach said, "Let's put 193 on the bar." I said, "Absolutely not. It's freakin' heavy." Especially after that 180 miss, I did not want to miss the weight, drop in on the floor, strip the bar down, rerack/reload/relift the weight. "C'mon. Just to say you did it. It'd be nice to get a new pr." My response was "Only if it means I don't have to do my down set with 160." (a down set is a set that you do with a lighter weight but more repetitions) "You can only get out of the down set if you go to 195."   I said, "I really hate making deals with you." as I load an additional 5 kgs to the bar. After sucessfully completing the lift I said, "See? That's how you motivate me to lift more weight: getting out of work." I followed this with a few snatches at 105 kgs.
     In the afternoon, my coach planned for me to go to 150 for three singles. My best before the Olympics was 150 for two singles. My coach had to travel that day so it was just me and my teammates lifting our brains out. My teammate told me he'd buy me dinner if I clean and jerked 155 kgs. I clean and jerked 150 for the first rep, it was slightly shakey but, no big deal. I repeated the lift for my second attempt and smoked it. So I told my teammate that if he loaded the bar for me, I'd give it a crack. So, with minor technical errors, I improved my clean and jerk by 5 more kgs and now I am only seven kgs away from the AMERICAN/PAN AMERICAN RECORD! I'm thinking sushi buffet is in order.
     There's a guy training with us who is preparing to tryout for the NFL and he said, "I don't know how you do it. I mean what did you have for breakfast?" "Well, I had generic Slimfast and beef jerky." He started laughing hysterically. "Who has that for breakfast?!" "I had orange juice too! Oh and then for lunch, I had Indian buffet. And the way over here I had a Clif bar." More laughing ensued.


     So my performance from Pan Ams is supposed to garner me a small bonus. I am really excited for this because I can pay off my trip to Nationals and get a new VCR. Those are some big dreams, I know. If I can put things together, I should be able to lift heavy enough to move into the #1 funding slot (It's strange that someone who is a Pan Am Champ is ranked #8 on the stipend list, right?) If I can manage to move up, I don't have to worry as much about a lot of things until December when the next payment period begins. If I cannot however, I have to make arrangements because my lease ends Sept. 30th yet, I have the World Championships in October and the President's Cup in Russia in November.
     I just saw this recently on the USA Weightlifting "DONATE" tab. It's an image of me and you can donate $. I am conflicted with them using my image. I am flattered they thought of me, I am glad my image is up in another location on the internet, and I am glad that I can be a face for USAW. I feel however, that it is better to just donate directly to the athlete of your choosing. If it's me, cool. You can mail them in, help with stuff on my Amazon Wishlist or donate through my paypal on the top right side of this screen. If it's not me, and you want to make a general donation, that's good too go ahead and donate. The last frustration I have is the fact that I have been fighting for years for a fairer stipend system and struggle all the time all while exceeding the expectations placed on me only to be ranked so low on the list. As a side note: only 3 out of 10 athletes getting any stipend at all are women.

Eyelashes and Dating:
     So one day at the gym, I had a funny, crooked eyelash. I tried to pluck it out with my fingers and managed to pluck out a whole gaggle of them. I then had a bald spot on my lash line. I invested in some individual lashes to get by until they grew back. I fell in love. I then decided, hey, go big or go home and bought a couple pairs of false lashes to give them a try. They are really fun and one of my new obsessions. Most fun less than $10 has gotten me in a while.
     If you are an avid follower of me, you may have remembered me saying something in the past about considering signing up for a dating site. Well, after some careful saving, I invested in a membership to a dating site. I have to say, overall, I am sorely disappointed. I have however in the past few months managed to scored a couple of second dates. One is coming up sometime before I leave for nationals, and the other one won't happen.
     So before Independence day, I had a fun Starbucks/movie date. He said he wanted to see me again. Huzzah! So we were talking about going out again on 4th of July. I thought it would be cool to go see fireworks together and enjoy eachother's company. He however, wanted an evening more in private. "We could watch fireworks, or we can stay in and make out." I was really flattered and it was good to know that he thought I was attractive. However, in my personal dating life, I don't think that is appropriate timing for those types of kisses and the subsequent activities he probably wanted to participate in with me. I told him no. I am not comfortable staying in a private place with someone of the opposite sex, that I do not know well, and wants more than I am comfortable with."You act like it's a bad thing." he said. I told him, "My reputation and my virtue are important to me." Was he handsome? Yes. Did I want to kiss him? You betcha. Just not at this time. He didn't respect my wishes and I was to never see him again.
     I thought to myself, "If I were to go over there or vice versa (however you spell that), it could make for an eventful 4th of July. Because hey, who doesn't like kisses? I wasn't comfortable with it though and I remembered all of my fans and followers too. What I do in my private life is no one's business nor am I obligated to tell anyone what I do in my free time. I could not however bring myself to be OK with it knowing I encourage women and little girls to be strong, confident, and to stick by their personal, moral codes by making good decisions. So as I said before through Twitter, thank you all for holding not only yourselves to a high standard but, me too as well.


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