Truth vs Feelings in the Sport of Weightlifting

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Truth VS Feelings: 
What Will Take you Further in Weightlifting?

by Stephen Powell

This is not intended to be a philosophical nor theological post. It simply is some advice to help lifters achieve goals and reach his or her potential in weightlifting. Truth, by its definition is exclusive of anything false. It is not open to subjective interpretation or debate. So, if you haven’t considered the truth of who you are and why you pursue weightlifting, then it’s time to do so. Why? Because too many lifters with exceptional talent never reach it because they allow feelings to dictate their daily training, and ultimately whether they will reach their potential.

Feelings serve us as much harm as good. One day a lifter may exude feelings of confidence and train well. The next, feelings of doubt and uncertainty dominate thoughts, and weights that are routine become difficult or missed numerous times. I couldn’t begin to count the number of times I’ve heard lifters say in frustration, “I don’t feel strong off the floor,” or “I don’t feel confident getting under the bar.” These are feelings, which allow the mind to rule the body in a very unproductive way. It raises an age-old question on how to overcome mental blocks or barriers.

I believe the only mental blocks or barriers that exist are the ones we create in our minds. The best way to overcome them is to never let them develop in your mind to begin with. It only takes one little seed of doubt, fear, uncertainty or frustration to cultivate barriers that will take root in your mind. How can you prevent this? By making the decision to live by the truth of who you are and what your willing to do to achieve whatever you want from weightlifting.


If weightlifting is what you want to do, if you seek the guidance of a good coach who agrees that you can reach your goals then everyday you have the choice to live by this truth or not. THE ATTENTION YOU GIVE TO YOUR DESIRE TO SUCCEED WILL DETERMINE WHETHER YOU DO OR NOT. Decide that when the seeds of doubt or uncertainty start creeping up in your mind TELL YOUR FEELINGS TO GET LOST! The truth is you’ve made up your mind. The truth keeps you putting one foot in front of the other no matter the terrain. Paul Anderson. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Muhammad Ali, all made up their minds they would be champions years before they actually did. It’s not like Ali stepped into the ring with Sonny Listen or George Foreman hoping he would win. He knew he would. If there were any doubt against these devastating punchers, he not only would have been beaten, he would have been severely beaten up like their other opponents.

Don’t ever allow yourself to forget what you want. Make the choice daily to do whatever it takes to keep your mind focused on what to do. Trials will come. Set­backs will occur. The truth will keep you on the path to your goals. I will close with a quote from Abraham Lincoln. “If you will allow no feeling of discouragement to seize or prey upon you, it is a certain truth you will succeed if you remain resolutely determined you will not fail.”

The best example of this is Amy Hay. She posted this to her Instagram account after lifting at the recent Sr. National Championships. There are very few people who could endure what she did while preparing Sr. Nationals. Amy Hay:

“Most people don’t know or understand what it takes to get to the point of high level competition. The most obvious requirement is time, followed by hard work and genetic ability. But for me, the months leading up to this competition required even more. In January competition season for my gymnasts kicked off which meant working 40 hour weeks with more than once, 26 hour weekends. On top of that, in February I faced my two rapists through a highly stressful and emotional trial. (I won btw). On top of that I had an ever increasingly painful shoulder injury I was and still am dealing with. The last month leading up to this competition I was exhausted and dealing with a lot of emotions and anxiety about my lifting but also about the trial experience. It led to a lot of break downs and even panic attacks. However, and I thank my years of gymnastics for this, I was able to fight against those feelings and find my inner strength and ended up having one of the best meets of my life. At the end of the day all its really about is how much weight you can put over your head. But it is also important to recognize what it takes to get there.” Go Follow @amy_75kg

Don’t forget about the Mash Elite Weightlifting Team Camp:

We are hosting a three-day camp July 8-10 at the Mash Compound. It’s going to look like this:

• Day 1 Max Out Friday with the team and social afterwards
• Day 2 Clinic with Coach McCauley, Coach Wilkes, me and the team
• Day 3 Clinic about meet day prep and strategy, and then a sanctioned meet

We’ve decided to limit the camp to only 20 people, so don’t wait if you’re interested. Here’s the link to find out more:

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