Empowered Lifting

Video posted December 8, 2015 in Sports by Haley Nelson


“Once you get under that bar, this heat comes in your face from the lights and the judges and you just get this adrenaline rush. You grab the bar, tighter than you ever have at practice… and you make the lift and it’s the best feeling ever,” Sara said, her face excited at just the memory of competing at her last powerlifting meet. Only two years before, Sara Pelletier, treasurer of the Penn State Powerlifting Team, had never even heard of the sport.

As a freshman, she was standing in line at the White Building when a member of the team struck up a conversation with her. Pelletier, impressed by the girl’s 135-pound bench press, decided to attend a meeting and when she met some new friends on the team, she was sold. While she valued the team and individual aspects of the sport as well as the challenge that it presented, it was the diversity and welcoming nature of the members that made her stick to it.

Starting with a max squat of 85 pounds and now at a max of 250 pounds, Pelletier has not only taken on a new sport, but has committed to a lifestyle that has changed everything. She has lost weight, improved her self-esteem, made best friends and a boyfriend on the team, and has become a force to be reckoned with on the competitive roster. Her goals include making gains in all her lifts, improving her technique, and performing well at Collegiate Nationals in Providence, Rhode Island in the spring.