I get all sorts of questions about powerlifting but the one that is hardest to explain is this one… “Why do you powerlift?”
Going to family functions, sometimes I feel like a circus freak. I mean that in the best of ways lol, really… everyone wants to talk about how much weight I can lift, what competitions I did, what powerlifting really even is, and more. I explain these things all the time to people. But the one I always stumble a little over is… why? I usually get the typical… “Do you get paid?” or “Can you win something?”
No, I don’t get paid. (Typically, I laugh at this.)
Yes, you can win something including cash at some meets, but you really have to be the top of the top to even have a chance at that 9 times out of 10. I can proudly say I’m really good at what I do, but I’m by no means the best of the best… and it is only becoming more competitive, especially with women year after year.
There are chances to get sponsorships as well where sometimes you can get your meet entries paid for, supplements/product, etc. But for the most part 99% of powerlifters don’t get shit. Only the top of the top (or sometimes a lucky good-looking woman can, who has a good following or voice on social media. Not hating, but marketing is marketing. Just being honest.)
So when it comes down to it, why… well I absolutely fucking love it! And so does the powerlifting community. It’s one of the reasons I truly think we are a tight knit, love it or hate it, die hard community. (No, we all don’t get along always or agree on everything. But I have met some truly amazing people through this sport.) Because we wouldn’t be doing this shit if we truly didn’t absolutely love it.
I’ve learned that something you are passionate about and love you can’t always explain to someone else… especially people who probably just see it as a lot of work, a waste of time or something that takes up too much of my time, or a risk for injuries.
Yes, it takes up a lot of my time. But it also has taught me patience, hard work, dedication, and strength – both mentally and physically. Yes, there is a risk for injury. But there also is a risk for injury for almost anything you do in life. That’s why working on solid technique, using smart programming, body maintenance, trigger point therapy, stretching, and deloads are staples in my lifting.
I know a lot of people bash this sport for many reasons (some valid). But ultimately competing in Powerlifting has been one of the most positive influences in my life. It has taught me a lot about myself and also helped me to gain more confidence. I truly believe it was something I was meant to do. I feel alive when I step on the platform.
I challenge people to go out and find something like this for their life. I don’t mean to try powerlifting. It’s obviously not for everyone, but I believe everyone needs something like this… something that you just can’t explain completely… something you just genuinely love… something that makes you forget about any stress on your mind… something that is worth all the hard work… and trust me, you will know it when you find it. (And so will everyone else.) But don’t be surprised when you get the same why question. Just smile when you do.