interview

Interview with 2 times Olympian Lydia Valentin (75kg, Spain)

10846937_10152692216228705_98717006_nI had the chance to contact Lydia Valentin – who is arguably one of the greatest female lifter at the moment – through her friend Sayra Yever. I would like to thank her for help in getting in contact with Lydia and for her translation skills. Lydia’s achievements are many in the 75kg- category: 6th at the 2007 World’s, Bronze at the 2013 world’s, 5th and 4th at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics respectively, and after many bronze and silver medals, she also got gold at the 2014 Europeans. This is a rather brief interview were we discussed how she got started, her plans and more.

Without further ado, here is the interview with Lydia Valentin.

Read More »Interview with 2 times Olympian Lydia Valentin (75kg, Spain)

FP interviews Olympian Marie-Ève Beauchemin Nadeau (69/75kg, Canada).

141 clean and jerk at Classique du Quebec.

141 clean and jerk at Classique du Quebec.

This is a well timed interview as Marie-Ève just won the Gold medal at the Commonwealth Games only a few days ago. Marie-Ève is an incredible athlete who has quite an interesting story to tell. Her achievements are many. On top of the Gold medal she won at the 2014 CWG (75kg category), she claimed a silver medal at the 2010 CWG in the same weight category. At the 2012 Olympic Games, she finished 8th and won her group (B group). She is consistently rank top 15 in the Worlds as well. Her story is one of perseverance, hard work, and passion… and is quite inspiring. We discuss technique, sport training vs weightlifting, how training evolves through the years, training conditions and more.

Read More »FP interviews Olympian Marie-Ève Beauchemin Nadeau (69/75kg, Canada).

Interview with Canada’s strongest man, George Kobaladze

Untitled-18One of my many goals with this First Pull Project is to promote weightlifting, especially in Canada. With that in mind, I am quite pleased to have had the chance to interview Mr. Kobaladze whose achievements are nothing short of spectacular.  George is an outstanding lifter who has been lifting for 24 years (In Canada and Georgia) and currently holds the records in the 105+KG category (174snatch/226 clean and jerk/400kg total). He won a bronze medal at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and 2011 Pan Ams, a silver medal at the 2012 and 2013 Pan Am championships, and ranked 11th at the 2013 World’s.

Read More »Interview with Canada’s strongest man, George Kobaladze

Interview with Vlad Rigert, son of the Best lifter of the 20th century DAVID RIGERT

Vlad Rigert with his friend Dmitry Klokov

Vlad Rigert with his friend Dmitry Klokov

It is such a great honor to have been able to interview Vlad Rigert. Vlad is the son of acclaimed and legendary weightlifter and coach David Rigert. Vlad is a weightlifter himself who has posted some pretty good numbers in the 105kg category. He trains at his father’s academy with Dmitry Lapikov, Andrei Demanov and Roman Konstantinov who are all great weightlifters. He is also a good friend of Dmitry Klokov. Vlad is a very nice person with lots of interesting things to say about coaching and training. I subtly edited his answer – with his approval- so that they read easier.

And without further ado…here is my interview with Vlad Rigert…

Read More »Interview with Vlad Rigert, son of the Best lifter of the 20th century DAVID RIGERT

Interview with Ian Wilson (105kg, USA)

945778_148167932048604_1171289702_nThe following is my interview with 2014 US National junior champion (105kg), Ian Wilson. At that competition he snatched 170kg and clean and jerked 205kg which were records. He was also a silver medalist at the 2011 youth championship. Ian is from Berkley but now lives in Seattle. He has been a weightlifter since he was 12 and has been making steady progress. He was kind enough to answer my questions.

Without further ado… here is the interview with Ian Wilson

Read More »Interview with Ian Wilson (105kg, USA)

Interview with Artem Ivanov, 2 times silver medalist at the World Championships (94kg)

Artem-Ivanov-ScreamI am very excited to have been able to reach out to Artem Ivanov, who kindly answered my questions even though I knew he was busy training. Mr. Ivanov lifts for Ukraine and, fortunately for us, he speaks/read/write English. Among his achievements, he has won 2 silver medals at the World Championships (2010 and 2011) where he faced very tough competition. For instance, at the 2010 Worlds, he totaled 402kg for Silver whereas Aleksandr Ivanov (Russia) totaled 403kg for Gold. In Paris (Worlds 2011), he snatched 5 more kilos than Ilya Ilyin. Ilyin proceeded to clean and jerk 5 more kilos than Ivanov and did not take his third attempt on the clean and jerk. Ilyin won on body-weight (Ilyin : 93.78kg vs Ivanov : 93.94kg). Ivanov’s best competition to date is 2012 Ukrainian nationals where he totaled 420kg (190kg snatch and 230kg clean and jerk). 

Without furter ado…here is my interview with Artem Ivanov.

Read More »Interview with Artem Ivanov, 2 times silver medalist at the World Championships (94kg)

Interview with Damon Kelly, 2010 commonwealth gold medalist

823256-albert-and-logan-olympiansI am thrilled to present you the following interview. Damon Kelly, from Australia, is the 2010 105+ Commonwealth championships gold medalist (Delhi) where he set a clean and jerk record of 221kg, beating his 217 clean and jerk record from 2006. In 2008, at the Olympic Games (Beijing) he placed 9th and he placed 6th at the World’s championship. During that year, he also won a gold medal at the Commonwealth championship and at the Oceania championships. He also has a website, a blog and a facebook page. Damon’s best lifts to date are a 176kg snatch, 222kg clean and jerk, and a 310kg backsquat, amongst other. Needless to say, Damon has achieved a lot in this sport and I am glad to have had the chance to interview him. 

Without further ado… Here is the interview

Read More »Interview with Damon Kelly, 2010 commonwealth gold medalist

First Pull Interviews Olympian Norik Vardanian

Norik at the 2012 Olympic Games. Credit to hookgrip.

Norik at the 2012 Olympic Games. Credit to hookgrip.

Son of one of the greatest weightlifter of all time (Yurik Vardanian), Norik was kind enough to answer my questions for your reading pleasure. Norik has trained in the USA as well as in Armenia. He mostly trained at the OTC when he was living in North America. In 2012, he represented Armenia at the  2012 Olympic Games in London, where he placed 11th in the 94kg category.  He just won the 2013 Armenian nationals. He also has a page on facebook and a youtube channel. He regularly post pretty nice photographs and videos over there.

Without further ado… Here is the interview with Norik Vardanian who has a lot to say on many topics.

Read More »First Pull Interviews Olympian Norik Vardanian

Interview with Christine Girard, bronze medalist in London 2012

Christine snatching 105kg at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, credit @ VancouverSun

Christine snatching 105kg at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, credit @ VancouverSun

It goes without saying that I am very excited to publish today’s interview. I had the chance to interview a very talented Canadian women weightlifter who happens to have nice perspectives to offer on many weightlifting-related topics.

Christine Girard is the first Canadian woman weightlifter to receive an Olympic Medal (3rd place in London in the 63kg category, 4th in Beijing). She has also won many medals in competitions like the Commonwealth games and Pan American championship. Above anything, Christine is a very nice and humble person who was kind enough to answers my questions.

Before proceeding to the interview, I would like to point out that Christine’s club is on facebook [link] and that she has a website [link]. She is now offering services such as seminars, personal coaching and public speaking which the reader can find information about on her website.

With no further ado… here is the interview.

Read More »Interview with Christine Girard, bronze medalist in London 2012

Interview with Greg Everett

blogAuthor-gregIt is now time for a third interview. Greg Everett is the owner of Catalyst Athletics. which was founded in 2006. He is a weightlifting coach, an author (he has written 2 books and writes the Performance Menu journal) and, as of lately, he is also a (weightlifting) documentary maker. Indeed Greg will be releasing his new documentary called ”American Weightlifting”  very soon and I had the chance to see it. I will publish my review of the documentary tomorrow, so make sure to check it out. 

Without further ado… Here is the interview with Greg Everett

Read More »Interview with Greg Everett