News and Media


Mattie Rogers (USA): “Nothing replaces competing at the Olympics!”

“Always a bridesmaid, never a bride”. The expression is self-explanatory and is used by US lifter Mattie Rogers to describe her past performances at the IWF World Championships: 13 medals, including nine silver and four bronze. The so-awaited gold may be reserved for 2023, at the global showcase in Riyadh (KSA), in September. “I don’t know... I have always been on silver, I would love a gold, but it’s going to be my first time in this super competitive 81kg category… It’s going to be hard!” she admits, laughing. Last December, in Bogota (COL), she was second (overall: 247kg) in the 76kg category, after three previous silver linings in 2021 (243kg), 2019 (240kg), and 2017 (235kg). Born on August 23, 1995, Rogers leaves this week for Bariloche, Argentina, where she will defend her 2022 Pan-American title in the 76kg. “I would like to say that the goal is to win, but I’m pretty much number-focused right now. This is an Olympic qualifying event, so if I have to take a lift just to secure a higher total than what I did at the World Championships that will be the goal. Make whatever is on the bar and be happy with that”, she explains. At the international level, the results achieved last year at the continental championships are her personal bests: 252kg overall (snatch: 111kg, clean & jerk: 141kg). But in 2021, she had done better on national soil: 255kg (112+143). Initially a competitive gymnast for 12 years, the young Mattie then wanted to “try other sports”. She found CrossFit and thanks to that, her first weightlifting coach. In between, she was a cheerleader for four/five years. “It was a kind of transition between gymnastics and weightlifting. My cheerleading coach used to put us on some conditioning workouts and was doing also a bit of CrossFit. He told me: ‘you should come to the gym with me’. And the gym owner was an Olympic weightlifting coach. Once I got on CrossFit – at my own rhythm – he told me: ‘I know you could be a good weightlifter!’ It was just a question of time”, the US star recalls. She competes at her first US Junior Nationals and the doubt was gone. “It was the first time I said ‘maybe, just maybe, I can really be good at this’. I have a good raw strength, a strong athletic background, but as far as being really strong, I still didn’t have that. So, it was not something I had planned; it was rather something I had to put a lot of effort into it even before I could realise this was something I could do well”. Games’ rollercoaster 2016 is the year when the first international successes emerge: silver at the Pan-Ams (69kg category) and gold at the FISU University Championships. By that time, the Olympics take place in Rio de Janeiro – Mattie Rogers travels to Brazil as an alternate lifter. She doesn’t compete; instead, she supports her teammates from the stands. “I was happy to be there, but it wasn’t a full Olympic experience…” Fast forward five years later, and we find her at the Tokyo Games (largely impacted by the Covid pandemic), this time as a member of the competing US team. “Going to Japan, I finally said: ‘I’ll have the full experience there’. And it wasn’t still that… We were there just for four days, it was very quick, hard to see any other sport. I was of course very happy to be at the Olympics, I wouldn’t trade it for anything else in the world, but it was a kind of a bummer. It wasn’t once again the full Olympic experience”, Rogers admits. Performance-wise, the Florida-based lifter, doesn’t hesitate to label the experience as both her best and worst career memory. “Nothing replaces competing at the Olympics! That’s every athlete’s ultimate goal. But it was also the worst competition of my life! It was terrible for me. It’s hard to pinpoint what was wrong – it was just not my day… I was also dealing with some mental issues at the time and that played a big part in it. I had a panic attack going into clean and jerks, and it was really difficult to recover and hold it together. It was both an embarrassing and scary moment,” she painfully considers. In the Japanese capital, she finished sixth in the 87kg, with a total of 246kg (108+138). After Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020ne, Rogers is cautious concerning the expectations for Paris 2024: “I just want to get there, I don’t care how it will look like, if I can have fans or not there, I don’t care… Just being there and I’ll be ecstatic!” Looking still ahead, she proceeds: “I really hope weightlifting can be in Los Angeles, in 2028. Not just for me, as it could be the end point of my career, but for the younger generation. Athletes who are in their late teenage years dream to go to the Olympics. Not knowing if they will get a chance to be there, it’s upsetting. So I hope we can get it together, come back, and be fully included in the Olympic programme”. “We do a great job together”Surrounded by animals in a big farm, the US champion is training most of the time alone. “It’s a bit challenging with my coach [Aimee Anaya Everett] as she lives in Oregon and me in Florida. So, there is also a very good job in communicating as I train completely by myself. But I couldn’t ask for a better coach – I wish we could be together more often, but we do a great job together!” While on the screen (this interview was a video online call), a cat walks behind Rogers. “It’s my training partner. I have my chickens outside, doing all kinds of noises when the cat is approaching… We have quite a farm… Four cats inside and as many as we can find outside. Yeah, I go anywhere, I see a cat, and I want to bring it home!” Coming from a family with “good athletic genes” (her parents were competing at high-school/college level), the 27-year-old lifter has developed in the last couple of years a clothing line, aimed at serving the lifters. “There is a lot of fitness stuff out there, but they don’t really fit well on weightlifters… We are just larger people. So that was the main driving force behind the project. I wanted to make it size-inclusive, gender-inclusive, just as inclusive it could be, so that it could serve everyone in the sport”. Still a small five-people project (taking care of the design, production, and promotion), “the business is steadily growing”. Graduated in December 2020 (Sports & Exercise Science), Rogers necessarily thinks of a future beyond competitive weightlifting. “Coaching will always be a part of my plans. I already do it now – I have my own athletes and programmes. That’s something I love and it will always be a kind of part-time job. For weightlifting, and for the time being, it’s not something from which you can do a fruitful career. There’s no money in coaching yet, and that’s what it is. So, I’ll always do that because I love it, and then whatever I need outside of that to survive. We will see what happens when the time comes”. Honesty and authenticityAlso very active on social media (with over 658k followers on Instagram at the time of this interview), the world silver medallist admits being a role model for the younger generation. “I try to be very honest and genuine. If I feel I am not being authentic, honest, or genuine, I hate that. I portray myself the same way I would do with my close friends and family. I hope they like it. I feel grateful for having such a kind and encouraging audience. I feel that my audience also looks at me in search of motivation and inspiration, but perhaps also on technique tips... They are in general very supportive”. Considering herself a “lucky athlete on the injury front”, Mattie Rogers reflects on her passion for the sport: “I love it because I’ve always loved individual sports. It’s only you, 100% you. It can be great, or it can be terrible. But I love that and that’s how I grew up. I also love how technical it is. You can be the strongest person in the world and be terrible at Olympic weightlifting. You need both the technical aspect and the strength – one alone, is not enough. So, there is always something you can still work on”. On the competition's environment, she is clear: “They are always scary, terrifying, but exciting! It’s always an adventure!” Finally, on the place of women in the sport, the US lifter believes weightlifting is now gender-balanced: “It has become more popular, especially over the last 8/10 years. There is a ton of women realising that being strong is indeed quite cool, and fun! We are definitively heading in the right direction. Every year, I feel the women’s weightlifting classes are getting more and more packed. That’s a proof of progress,” she concludes. By Pedro Adrega, IWF Communications Photos by Isaac

Tenishia Thornton (MLT): “This sport makes you more mature”

As the smallest country in the European Union and one of the tiniest nations in the world, Malta is not often in the news headlines. Sport is no exception to this rule. Until June 2022, the archipelago (located in the Mediterranean) hadn’t produced any world champion in Olympic sports. In Leon, Mexico, at the IWF World Youth Championships, Tenishia Thornton (only 16 at the time) won the gold in the 55kg category, thus becoming a pioneer in Maltese history. She lifted a total of 178kg (78kg snatch and 100kg clean & jerk) and finished largely first (by a margin of 7kg), leading a group of 16 competitors in her weight category. Tenishia was born on September 1, 2005, and is already one of the most recognisable faces in Malta. Last weekend, she was voted the Women’s Youth Athlete of the Year 2022, and also won the People’s Choice vote, in the 63rd edition of the SportMalta Awards, aimed at honouring the best athletes of the country. Her coach Jesmond Caruana, also President of the Maltese Weightlifting Federation, was consecrated as the Coach of the Year. The right choice It all started in 2017. “I was 12 years old. My father does CrossFit (he is not a professional) and from a very young age I used to go with him to the gym. He is a big inspiration for me, as I grew up surrounded by this sport. It was part of my childhood. My parents then understood that this was my passion and they contacted coach Caruana. He took me to a first session, and from then, I couldn’t stop,” recalls Tenishia. Surprisingly (or not...), the young talent didn’t have to wait long to shine. “Only a month later, I had my first competition, and I did very promising results. My coach then told me: ‘with only a month of training, these are quite encouraging performances!’”. The event was a Maltese tournament, and for the record, the then 12-year-old Tenishia lifted 21 kg (snatch) and 30kg (clean & jerk). “I understood I had done the right choice! With the support of my family and my coach, I started training more and I kept improving the results. Moreover, I immediately loved the competition atmosphere and felt the necessary adrenaline to do always better”. Fast forward almost six years later and we now find Tenishia training eight times a week, under a personalised programme elaborated by her coach. On Mondays and Wednesdays, the gym sessions start early in the morning (before school) and continue in the afternoon, while the remaining days include only one evening session, after her high school obligations. Sunday is a rest day. “It’s definitively a busy schedule, but when I see the results appearing, I think it’s worth all the sacrifices,” she confesses. At almost 18, the Maltese prodigy is now facing a dilemma: sport or university? “I am in an age group where I still can highly improve my results, so an exclusive focus on the sport seems to be the right choice for the moment. However, we had some meetings with the university management on how to conciliate studies and training. The feedback was highly positive. So, this is still a question mark,” Tenishia admits. For the moment, the only clear topic in her mind, should high studies be considered, is the direction of those studies: “Coaching, physical education!”. “LA 2028 is more realistic for me” Besides the world title in Mexico, the Maltese lifter also won the European continental youth gold medal and had the opportunity to compete at the IWF World (senior) Championships last December in Bogota (COL). In the 59kg category, she was 33rd (in a field of 52 athletes), lifting a total of 188kg (84/104). Less than one month ago, in a national event, she improved her Personal Best, which is now 190kg (85/105). “The Olympics? Of course! Paris 2024 or Los Angeles 2028? Los Angeles is more realistic. I am only 17, so doing better than senior athletes in 2023 is quite complicated. I will try my best for the Paris qualification. However, by the time of the Games in Los Angeles, I will have physically and mentally developed more and my results will for sure be even better and more consistent,” she anticipates. After her outstanding successes as a lifter, Tenishia is already a role model for the youth in her country. “As I am the first world champion from Malta in an Olympic sport, I received very positive and enthusiastic feedback from everyone – my family, my schoolmates, people in general, but also the media. They highly promoted my results and made sure my success was known. This had a very positive consequence: the sport is now more recognised (it was not very well-known before me...), and more young athletes are practising it. And most of them are women, so this is very important in terms of the future development of the sport. It’s not a male-dominated sport anymore and it can be practised by both genders. There are now some really promising athletes, who can achieve prominent results in the future. I dare to think that I may have inspired some of these young athletes...” she humbly admits. Widely speaking, the 2022 youth world champion believes that women will have a very relevant role in the sport: “The word is spreading out and more people, especially women, are keen to learn the sport because it’s an amazing sport. Promotion and awareness are being developed and this effort is giving results”. Mental struggle Another very positive evolution relates to the reputation image of weightlifting, namely its main challenge in recent years: doping. The Maltese star is also quite optimistic: “This problem will get better because things have changed. More awareness has been put forward and I am very hopeful that these changes will only bring benefits to weightlifting. Many, many athletes lift clean and it’s a pity that their sacrifices and their efforts are destroyed by a few that don’t respect the rules. The majority of athletes strive to get better results in a clean way – and they do it! It’s important to have this discussion. Athletes like me really believe that the sport should be practised on a fair basis”.   Despite her young age, Tenishia has a very mature vision of the future development of weightlifting. She is therefore keen on passing a “new image” of the sport she loves: “Although it is physically strenuous for your body, it doesn’t harm your body, it’s actually good. It helps you to mature and develop in so many aspects. Being only physically strong is not enough. The mental aspect of it is perhaps even more important. Throughout weightlifting, I have enormously developed my personality and character, as I try to constantly do better. This is a huge mental struggle. Weightlifting clearly makes you a more mature person!” As a concrete example of this mindset, the Maltese champion explains how difficult is to remain in a bodyweight category. “When I must cut down some weight, this represents a lot of sacrifices for me. When you study and are stressed because of your exams, you tend to gain weight. I must do the opposite, so it’s a kind of double sacrifice. And this requires a lot of mental effort,” Tenishia admits. “Never give up!” In another challenging moment of her life, she had to overcome a knee injury in 2021. She was growing too fast (she is 1.73m/5’8’’ tall) and the body couldn’t manage this fast natural progression with the intense training in the gym. “It was a very difficult period for me. But again, with perseverance and a lot of work, I was again able to lift and compete. 2022 was indeed my first experience at the world level (we had competed in 2020, but virtually...). I felt I had the potential, but it was quite stressful after this injury. In the end, things went quite well...” Relatively popular in the social media environment, the 17-year-old wants her fans to retain one basic principle: “You must never give up! I am a concrete example of this rule: if you are determined, disciplined and patient, you’ll manage it, you’ll progress and get there”. Tenishia’s short-term competitive programme includes two tournaments (in Malta and France) in the weeks to come, and then the European Championships in Yerevan (ARM), from April 15-23. “I am quite excited to take part in these competitions. I also look forward to improving my results and achieving more success for Malta. Even though we are such a small country we can show through sport our strength and determination,” she concludes. By Pedro Adrega, IWF Communications   photo by Isaac Morillasphoto by Isaac

Get to know… Loredana Elena Toma

Name:  Loredana Elena Toma DOB: 10/05/1995 Nationality: Romanian Weight category: 64kg Medal record: 9 gold medals European championship, 3 gold medals and 1 silver medal World Championship Senior Personal Bests: Snatch: 111kg Clean and Jerk: 131kg Total: 239kg Loredana Elena Toma celebrating in Ashgabat. Career Snatch or clean and jerk? - Snatch What do you like to listen to when training?– Hip Hop How many hours a week do you spend in the gym?- Depends on the training period, up to 25-30 hours week What's your favourite aspect of training? - The technique aspect of the competitive exercises Which aspect of training do you hate the most? – The jerk If there was one thing you could improve about your technique, what would it be? – The jerk technique What is your most memorable lift? – 110kg snatch in the World Championships in Turkmenistan What achievements will allow you to retire happy? – Olympic Medal Knowing what you know now, what one thing would you change in your first training routines? – I believe I wouldn’t change anything Who is the greatest weightlifter of all time? – Nicu Vlad What is the most important thing needed to be an Olympic weightlifter? – Strong mind   Loredana Elena Toma's clean & jerk in Ashgabat.   Personal Describe yourself in 3 words – Determination, strength & focus What other sports do you like to play? – Ping Pong What is your favourite meal?– BBQ Ribs/ Cake If you could only eat one type of one cuisine for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Romanian cuisine Describe your perfect day off – Eating in a good restaurant Which person, alive or dead, would you like to have a conversation with? – Deng Wei Name one skill you would like to learn – To swim Where is the one place you would like to visit? – Indonesia What's the best piece of advice you've ever received? – Never give up on your dream   Loredana will be taking over IWFs Instagram on Thursday 16 May, make sure you tune in to see what this weightlifting star gets up to on a daily basis!  

Get to know… Hidilyn Diaz

Name: Hidilyn Diaz D.O.B: 20 February 1991 Nationality: Filipino Bodyweight Category: 55kg Major Medals (Total): 13 Personal Bests: Snatch: 103kg Clean and Jerk: 123kg Total: 226kg Hidilyn Diaz winning silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics -- CAREER 1. Snatch or clean & jerk? Snatch   2. What do you like to listen to when training? Pop music   3. How many hours a week do you spend in the gym? 9 sessions a week in Weightlifting and 3 sessions jogging and other stuff.   4. What’s your favourite aspect of training? When I’m crying like crazy because I'm in so so much pain and I can’t do anything but rest and accept that day is not my day.   5. Which aspect of training do you hate the most? Hate the process. Love and hate actually, when I have to train even though I’m sore.   6. If there was one thing you could improve about your technique, what would it be? I need to improve my strength and I want to muscle memory my technique.   7. What is your most memorable lift? The most memorable lift was the winning moment in Olympics. Wooh! With all the pain and challenges I was able to survive.   8. What achievements will allow you to retire happy? I will retire happy if I win a Gold medal in Olympics.   9. Knowing what you know now, what one thing would you change in your first training routines? I need to change my mindset. I need to believe that I can do it. I need to convince myself that I love what I’m doing.   10. Who is the greatest weightlifter of all time? For me, Idolize Eko Irawan. When I was young he was already a champion and he was able to maintain his status. That amazed me. How was he able to do it?!   11. What is the most important thing needed to be an Olympic weightlifter? What makes me different from other athletes is my attitude towards training. I will give everything to what I’m doing. I think all Olympic weightlifters are disciplined, determined and have a dreams and even when they fail they still get up and keep fighting for their dream. Hidilyn Diaz at the 2017 IWF World Championships -- PERSONAL   1. Describe yourself in 3 words. Weightlifting defines who I am. (Sorry not three words)   2. What other sports do you like to play? I didn’t play other sports when I was young but now I've learnt to appreciate swimming and cycling.   3. What is your favourite meal? I love food, so everything is my favourite!   4. If you could only eat one type of cuisine for the rest of your life, what would it be? I don’t want only one cuisine, I want a buffet where I can try everything. I will always choose Filipino cuisine. Yummy!   5. Describe your perfect day off. The perfect day is a productive day, where I move and do the things I need to do.   6. Which person, dead or alive, would you like to have a conversation with? I want to talk to my Lola, who died before 2016. I miss her and I want to hug her.   7. Name one skill you would like to learn. I want to learn how to be an Interior Designer.   8. Which is the one place you would like to visit? New Zealand   9. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? God is the best direction in life. Lean on Him. Seek him on every decision you make.   See Hidilyn's results from the 2018 World Championships in Ashgabat here.  Follow IWF: Facebook Instagram Twitter

Weightlifters’ New Year’s Resolutions

We asked professional weightlifters from around the world what their 2019 New Year’s resolutions were. Here's what they said... [caption id="attachment_25735" align="aligncenter" width="512"] Mohamed Ehab (EGY) in Ashgabat 2018[/caption]   Mohamed Ehab (EGY), 81kg  "Achieve new world records and be the best weightlifter in the world."    Christine Girard (CAN), retired  "Get more involved in the anti-doping movement both domestically and internationally."    Jessica Lucero (USA), 59kg  "Go 6 for 6 in an international event and work on more consistency in my technique."    Rebeka Koha (LVA), 59kg  "When every year comes, I aim to improve my results. I want to do everything at the same level as 2018 or better and earn my way into the Olympics."    Ianne Ernesto Vergara Guinares (NZ), retired  "Grow weightlifting in the Netherlands."   [caption id="attachment_25737" align="aligncenter" width="512"] Fernando Reis (BRA)[/caption] Fernando Reis (BRA), +109kg  "Recover from my knee surgery for the first part of the year, then medal at the 2019 World Championships."   Mike Cerbus (USA), retired  "Continue to teach the Olympic lifts to as many people as possible."   Sarah Davies (GBR), 71kg  "Win medals at the European Senior Championships and continue to improve my rankings for Olympic qualification."   Anais Michel (FRA), 49kg  "Lift 82kg Snatch and 102 C&J at the next Euro or World Championship."    Yoichi Itokazu (JPN), 61kg  "Lift 300kg total."   Berny Bernardin (FRA), 69kg   "Have my wife and son join me in Paris, win the European Championships, podium at the Worlds and achieve my PRs: 147kg snatch and 182kg C&J."    Luz Acosta (MEX), retired   "Encourage boys and girls to start training into the sport, become closer with the IWF to start growing the sport in Mexico and improve the classification of national selection for a fair process in Mexico."    [caption id="attachment_25736" align="aligncenter" width="512"] Mattie Rogers (USA)[/caption] Mattie Rogers (USA), 71kg  "Train SMART and give my absolute best every day."   Hidilyn Diaz (PHI), 55kg  "Lift 100 Snatch and 120 C&J in my next competition."    Adam Beytin (USA),  77kg (old bodyweight category)  "Fully heal my back pain and surpass my old competition bests."   Rachelle Bazinet (CAN), 55kg  "Break the Canadian Snatch record at 55kg. Work on my mindset and listen closely to what my body needs to limit injuries."   Rosane Reis (BRA), 55kg  "Work on my technique."   Arkadiusz Michalski (POL), 109kg   "Get a Personal Best, especially in Snatch. I must correct my technique and build strength."     Carolina Valencia (MEX), 49kg  "Correct my technique in the Clean and Jerk and to arrive with good points for 2019 Pan-American games and get a gold medal for my country. Give a good competition at the IWF World Championships and lift 6x6."   Jared Fleming (USA), 94kg (old bodyweight category)  "Snatch and C&J what I’m capable of. Enjoy every training session and enjoy competing again."   Emily Godley (GBR), 69kg (old bodyweight category)  "Try and keep as healthy as possible and to keep my body in one piece throughout training and competitions in 2019."   Joanna Lochowska (POL), 55kg  "Improve my personal records in the 55kg category and exceed my limit of 200kg in total."   Loredana Toma (ROU), 64kg  "Get the necessary results for Tokyo qualification, focus on World Championships, European Championships and 2 QUP. My initial goal is 112/133, but I will adjust if necessary."   Jenny Arthur (USA), 82kg  "Win a World Championship. Snatch 115+ and Clean and Jerk 145+."   [caption id="attachment_25738" align="aligncenter" width="512"] Mart Seim (EST)[/caption] Mart Seim (EST), +109kg  "Get good PRs in every main exercise and get rid of my back injury and remain injury free; by doing these I hope to win a medal again at Worlds."   Gaelle Ketchanke (FRA), 76kg  "Work even more to improve my technique and performances to get back to my best level. Win the European Championships, stay in the top 8 in the World and qualify directly for Tokyo."   Sopita Tanasan (THA), 49kg  "Do my best in all competitions."   Chad Vaughn (USA), retired  "Get back onto the competition platform a little more (Masters level). Working to go to US National Masters and then potential Worlds. Trying out 1 or 2 new weight classes, as it’s been a long time since I competed at anything other than 77kg."   Jessien Bradley (USA), 69kg (old bodyweight category)  "Be intentional with every single training session, focus on every single lift and recovery."   Mönkhjantsangiin Ankhtsetseg (MNG), 69kg (old bodyweight category)  "Compete and get a medal at the 2019 IWF World Championships."     You can preview all the weightlifting events coming to you in 2019 here.    Follow IWF: Facebook Instagram Twitter

Get to know… Rebeka Koha

Name: Rebeka Koha D.O.B: 19 May 1998 Nationality: Latvian Bodyweight Category: 59kg Major Medals (Total): 18 (youth, junior and senior) Personal Bests: Snatch: 103kg Clean and Jerk: 124kg Total: 227kg [caption id="attachment_25633" align="aligncenter" width="500"] Rebeka Koha at the 2018 IWF World Championships[/caption] -- CAREER 1. Snatch or clean & jerk? Clean & Jerk.   2. What do you like to listen to when training? I don’t listen to music when I’m in training.   3. How many hours a week do you spend in the gym? 18 hours.   4. What’s your favourite aspect of training? My favourite aspect of training is when my coach explains clean and jerk techniques to me.   5. Which aspect of training do you hate the most? Learning snatch technique!   6. If there was one thing you could improve about your technique, what would it be? I would improve my clean technique.   7. What is your most memorable lift? My 120kg clean & jerk lift at last year’s Junior World Championships. Because of that lift, I won my first world champion title and it looked so awesome - two 25kg plates on each side of the barbell!   8. What achievements will allow you to retire happy? If I said all of them, I would be lying. Sometimes I know that I did less than I could, but I’m grateful for these failures, because that’s how I get to the podium’s highest step. I hope that I have learned from the failures and now will be only the best.   9. Knowing what you know now, what one thing would you change in your first training routines? Actually, I would take something from my first training routines and bring it back. Now I’m lazier than before, because I’m always tired of the hard work we do. At the start I was more hard working because it was only the beginning. Now that I know how hard it is, it’s harder for me to withstand all of this work.   10. Who is the greatest weightlifter of all time? I will not say that there is one who is better than another. In every timeline there are athletes who are at the top: Yury Zakharevich, Ronny Weller, Halil Mutlu, “The Pocket Hercules”, Pyrros Dimas, Viktor Scerbatih, Lasha Talakhadze and many others, but with time they will change. In my opinion there is not one best, there are many.   11. What is the most important thing needed to be an Olympic weightlifter? Be brave and believe in yourself. [caption id="attachment_25634" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Rebeka at the 2018 Junior World Weightlifting Championships[/caption] -- PERSONAL   1. Describe yourself in 3 words. Strong. Funny. Brave.   2. What other sports do you like to play? Basketball, tennis and boxing.   3. What is your favourite meal? Beef fillet.   4. If you could only eat one type of cuisine for the rest of your life, what would it be? European cuisine.   5. Describe your perfect day off. I would like to sleep for as long as I want and then time with my family and friends!   6. Which person, dead or alive, would you like to have a conversation with? Conor McGregor.   7. Name one skill you would like to learn. I would like to learn to juggle.   8. Which is the one place you would like to visit? Hawaii   9. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? Don’t listen to other opinions and do what you want to do. If you decide to do something - do it, because we should all live our lives how WE want to not how OTHERS want us to. See Rebeka's results from the 2018 World Championships in Ashgabat here.  Follow IWF: Facebook Instagram Twitter