Saturday, August 5, 2017

Become What You Have Received; My Internal Struggle with Powerlifting

Become what you have received.

These words resonated with me at my daughter's first communion back in May. When I first heard them, I asked myself what is it that my children are receiving? What am I, as their Mother, giving them? The answer I gave myself was a mix of good and bad and a lot in the middle. It certainly gave me another perspective to the ever changing canvas of parenting.

Powerlifting is a hobby. It is not my job. I repeat these things over to myself when I'm stuck in the middle of obsessing and worrying about lifts, and meets, and form, and attempt selection, and body weight, and flights, and hotel rates, and time off from work.

I love this sport. I love training and competing. I love preparing. I love analyzing. I love almost everything that is necessary to be good in this sport. I'm good at it too. Really good. I don't mind waking up at the ass crack of dawn to train (80% of the time at least), I don't mind the annoying aches and pains, I don't mind the physical effort, I don't mind any of it. BUT FOR WHAT? The truth is, I really don't know the answer. Any result, whether internal or external, is and has been at sole benefit of myself.  This is my internal struggle.

But for what?! I yelled at my husband when discussing exactly why I'm pursuing a sport that rarely puts enough money back in my pocket to even break even. A sport that takes time away from children, money away from vacations we could be taking as a family, energy I could be putting into avenues that produce income, attention and validation I could feel from parenting, being a wife, being good at my job that this sport is currently doing for me. FOR WHAT?

Become what you have received. For whatever reason, which has become multifaceted for myself, I have received this gift of being strong. I am workhorse. There is no amount of work, or discomfort that will deter me from fulfilling my potential. I am not the person that needs external motivation to show up. I have a trance like focus and I can't escape it. However, I also have genetics. When I started lifting, I was immediately an outlier. Work and commitment will certainly take you to levels you thought were un-achievable, but those things combined with genetics, and you will become unstoppable.

Who am I to deny these gifts that I have received? What kind of asshole would I be if I received this gift and I were to ignore it? My pursuit of strength has made me who I am. My pursuit of strength has made me a better person, a better parent, a better wife, a better teammate, a better Jennifer. While I may struggle at times with the "WHY" of powerlifting, I am forever indebted to the sport.

I have received this gift, and I will become it. I will become it, I will nurture it, I will evolve it....AND THEN I will give whatever I received to my children, to any of you that read my blogs, to any of you that follow along with my journey, to any of you that reach out to me, to any of you that walk into my gym, to any of you that cross my that path.

I will give you what I have received.


  1. Beautifully written! This resonates with me even though I am pretty certain I have NOT been gifted with some extraordinary strength or talent. Nonetheless, I too love this sport and all that it requires. Keep strong my sister ~ lift on!

  2. Im just getting back into powerlifting after many years off and kids. This post really hit home for me, I'm almost im tears. Thanks for the inspiration!