Do You Even Lift? Well, um, no, not really.

As an active, sport enthusiast, transfer student from the greater Los Angeles area, I have been exposed to various “mainstream” sports, such as baseball (Dodgers and Angels), basketball (Lakers and Clippers), and soccer (Galaxy). However, the sport I devoted a large portion of my life to is not common among most girls my age, nor is it listed above. In first grade, a boy punched me on the playground and I fell to the asphalt crying. Consequently, my parents enrolled me in martial arts to learn how to defend myself so that the next time a boy punched me, I could knock him out by kicking him in the face. Although I began taekwondo to foster self-security, I fell in love with fighting as a sport–the game, if you will.

I devoted most of my time in high school to training and made the US National Taekwondo Team four times. Since taekwondo is a weight-dependent sport, I had to lose about 18 pounds to fight in the feather weight division at tournaments. Generally speaking, I did so by eating healthy foods and working out two to three times per day. However, when I went to the gym, I would do a lot of cardiovascular exercises and less weight-lifting exercises. I wasn’t at the gym to “get buff;” I was at the gym to lose weight so I could fight.

After I achieved the goals I had set for myself, I stopped competing. Although I still train, my primary focus is school, family, friends, and my boyfriend. When I ask him what day it is, I expect an answer like, “Monday or Thursday.” However, his reply is, “Legs day or Back day.” I enjoy cookies and cream milkshakes, but he prefers cookies and cream protein shakes. I admire Wilma Rudolph, whereas his role model is Arnold Schwarzenegger.  He is immersed in the weight-lifting community and has inspired me to study the sport of weight-lifting for my project. Perhaps by the end of this quarter, weight-lifting can be our sport, not just his. stronger

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One Response to Do You Even Lift? Well, um, no, not really.

  1. Sarah McCullough says:

    Congratulations on your impressive achievement in taekwondo! Given this background, I imagine you will excel at weightlifting. The various uses of the gym space and their different atmospheres will be something to think about as you move forward in this project. It sounds as if you have spent a good amount of time in the cardio section. My observations are that the differences between the cardio and weights section is significant, particularly around gender. However, I do not know if that is the case here. I look forward to learning more. I have some scholarly sources on female bodybuilding that I can share as well, if you email me.

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