After months of hard work, grueling competitions, and tiresome training, Austin Simply Fit is sending nine athletes to compete in the International Powerlifting League’s World Championships to be held in Las Vegas November 5-9.
Representing Austin Simply Fit will be Krista Bergeron, Nicole Gonzales, Franki Spell, Robyn Pettinger, Annie Diu, Lauren Goebel, Phoebe Morales, Martha King and Bruce Koch. In order to compete at the world level, each athlete had to meet vigorous qualification standards at USPA sanctioned events between November 2013 and October 2014. Athletes who qualified but are not competing include John De La Paz, Meryl Carey, Bonnie Thomas, Julie Novack and Dana Rygwelski.
This will be Nicole Gonzales’ second appearance at Worlds. All the other athletes will be making their World debut this November. The athletes will have three attempts at three lifts (squat, bench and deadlift) with the goal of breaking personal records and taking home a World Title.
The team has been training under the direction of Austin Simply Fit President, world class power lifter and expert fitness trainer Mark Rogers. “This will be another opportunity to showcase our strength, perseverance and love for the sport,” said Rogers. “We plan to break multiple world records and have multiple athletes chosen to TEAM USA.”
Gonzalez, weighing in at 132lbs, aims to lift 900lb total and break the World Record in both the squat and deadlift. “I’m excited to test out all the hard work and dedication I’ve put in these past four months training to compete with the very best in the sport.
Martha King, a 56-year-old retiree, qualified to compete and finds the entire experience surreal. “I just want to do the very best that I can and improve on my previous lifts,” King said.
Over the past year, the team has overcome a variety of mental and physical challenges in order to make it to the World Championships. The mantra they live by and will be taking with them to Las Vegas is simple, “We will not accept mediocrity.”