I lift heavy…for a person.

I follow a bunch of athlete’s on instagram, one of which appears pretty hard core, (Bobby Ashhurst) today he posted a picture that said.. “Better sore than sorry” and “deadlift, because somewhere a girl is warming up with your max weight.”

Are you kidding me?

Here is the conversation that followed:

susanknight: Because somewhere a girl is warming up with your max? You get how insulting that is to women lifters.. right?
laxjustin: How is that insulting to women lifters? If anything it makes them look better…
susanknight: Why should it be motivational that a “girl” is warming up with your max? Shouldn’t it just be that “someone” is warming up with your max?
bobbyashhurst:  you’re taking it way too serious. The best female lifter, although impressive, will never out lift the best male lifters. That’s just a genetic advantage men have. Just like women can endure more pain, in general, then men.
susanknight: Yup. You are correct when talking about the best. Please just keep in mind that if you have female lifter friends, even if they don’t say anything, after awhile those cracks start to grate a bit.

I love how he added the “in general” about the pain but not about the lifting. My point here is using a specific group to define something to be “not as good” is just plain rude, and for someone that appears to want to motivate people it goes beyond rude and can not only be demotivating but also sets a horrible example for expectations in the gym and how men and women should look at there accomplishments.

I train at The Athlete Factory with Michele Helmeczi, next to me in those squat racks along with weekend warriors and people working on general fitness are Olympic swimmers and skiers, world class rugby players and elite level hockey, football, basketball and soccer players. NOT ONCE have I felt any disrespect, NOT ONCE have I heard “for a girl,”  NOT ONCE was it pointed out that I wouldn’t lift as heavy because I was lacking a penis.

I have been RESPECTED.

Those athletes and trainers have stood by me and cheered while I tested lifts. They spot me when needed with NO judgy comment about if I make the lift or not. Not once have I ever heard.. that’s heavy.. for a girl. I get respect for what I am lifting because I am lifting it.  I put in the work, I put in the time, I fought with my head and I made those muscles strong. I have cried as I walked out the door and I have also high fived my way out the door.. none of that was due to my sex.  I will say straight up that I have been frustrated while working on my bench because the guys seem to be able to lift so much more so much faster, and we had the male vs female muscle talk.

Powerlifting is about you and the iron. Period. I love the records I hold in powerlifting and I strive to hold on to them and set a few more, in the process of doing that I will out lift other people. Am I motivated because someone can lift more then me?


I am motivated simply because I can lift more tomorrow with hard work then I did today. I don’t need to be motivated by someone else’s achievements male or female. I can admire them, they can let me know it is possible, but the motivator for me is simply.. that I can.

I am a strong but over thinking over emotional girl that doesn’t always feel that she fits into the powerlifting world or the sports world at all. I guess I should change that to “I was” until I found a place that I belonged. Who knew it would be with some of the best athletes in the world?

If you are motivated to lift more because a “girl” is warming up with your max weight, it is time to rethink a few things and perhaps consider how some of the women lifters who are working just as hard as you might feel about a statement like that.