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Prepping for Success or Failure


Most of the time when you look at someone else who appears to be ahead of you in your sport, you assume that they must always be on to their next win in the

sport. Most of those athletes are incredibly confident in themselves and their ability to win at their next show, but deep down they understand there is always a chance that someone can outdo their effort. That person could easily be you. That’s the thing about being courageous within a sport. It’s not going about completely devoid of fear, it’s about going about it with the fears you have alongside the confidence you hold for yourself.

Very few are actually without fear or nerves when it comes to competition, but everyone is capable of calming down and realizing that they deserve the spot they have been granted. Whether it be your first time at a national or world level show, if you find yourself there then you need to be proud of the place you have earned at that show. Are there people capable of outworking each of you? Sure, but you don’t need to, nor should you go down without a fight if you’re as passionate as you claim to be.

As a rising star or a completely new amateur, you should value the work you have put in and continue to put in while striving for more growth as you go. Many amateurs that make it to nationals or something higher in a quick fashion, begin to count themselves out as a contender because of the people that came before them or the “well-known” names that they are up against. I’d call that preparing to fail mentally first and as an athlete second. If you’re counting yourself out, then how can you give your competition preparation your all? In my experience that’s when then excuses come out like, “It doesn’t really matter if I make weight then does it,” “X person is going to win this event anyway,” and other things like “It’s fine I really didn’t expect to podium here anyway.”

At the end of your career in the sport, do you want to say that you kind of gave it some effort along the way or do you want to be able to confidently say that you gave it 100% and feel proud of it? There’s no shame in losing and growing from it when you actually put your best foot forward. I went from winning my first national show to taking second at my first worlds show completely devastated but confident in the fact that at the time I had given it my best effort. Since then, my “best effort,” has changed significantly as will yours as you take each competitive experience and learn from it. I learned at that show that if I had found ways to remain calm in my lifts instead of angry/ flustered I would have performed much better. I continue to find new ways to prepare myself for success mentally and physically, and I truly hope you find ways to prepare yourself for success over failure every time. As soon as you count yourself out, you give everyone else permission to count you out as well.


Nancy Johnson

2019 Women's Mid-Weight Strongman National Champion

USS MWW Deadlift Record Holder

Cerberus Strength Ambassador - NANCIEE10 to save 10%