Hidilyn Diaz carries her weight to victory | Health And Family, Lifestyle Features,

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Hidilyn Diaz has been our new sports hero after winning the silver medal in weightlifting in the Rio Olympic Games in 2016, and she continues to bring glory to the country by amassing more medals in various international tournaments.
She has had tremendous growth in her career after competing in the Beijing Olympics in 2008, being the youngest competitor there.


Her success has helped propel the popularity of the sport, and she herself has taken pains to put up a gym that can accommodate enthusiasts, as well as develop the new heroes of the sport.
There also is a national event named after her to help the locals improve their craft before tackling bigger challenges abroad.
All this has kept her plate full, but make no mistake, she continues to hone her skills with her ultimate goal in sight: a gold medal at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.




Muscles and victory

PHILIPPINE STAR: Talk to us about the 2017 World Championships. You won another medal, but the road was apparently very difficult?



HIDILYN DIAZ: The journey was very tough. Heading into the competition, I had difficulty making the weight. I know this is a usual problem, but for this event it was more of a challenge. When I arrived in the US it was very cold, so I couldn’t drop my weight despite everything I did. Then the time difference was drastic, too. It was upside down. The food wasn’t a problem. But the adjustment to the weather and time, I was constantly crying.


But despite all that, you bagged the silver medal.

Yes, amid all those challenges, I did win a medal for the country. I am so thankful to God for the courage. Then he also blessed me with people that provided me the wisdom in competing.  There were really times I felt I couldn’t continue. But he provided the courage. I was crying for days. I couldn’t bring down my weight. Eventually I was able to bring my weight down so I could compete. But I really thought it was over. That’s why I’m so thankful to the Lord.


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You have also been trying to push the sport locally.



Yes, now with the Hidilyn Diaz Weightlifting Open Championship, so every year there will be a competition. I thank the MVP Sports Foundation, Miss Pat (Hizon) and company because they gave me this opportunity to help grow the sport. It’s not for me but for the kids to be able to experience what it takes to be in an international competition. The platform is the same. The nerves you feel, it’s exactly what I felt abroad. I have truly been blessed after winning in the Olympics. I have been able to put my sport on the local map. I always thank God for the people he has surrounded me with, helping the sport grow here.  We have advance abroad in this sport. We just need the constant support with proper availability of our needs. Step by step, little by little, we will progress. Until the day I retire, weightlifting athletes will have a bright future.


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