Athlete of the Month – Whitney Nelsen

Whitney has been a long-time member of Six Lifts Weightlifting and is one of the most dedicated athletes! You’ll always find her in the platform side of the gym early morning putting in the work. Recently, Whitney has made some important progress and breakthroughs with her Olympic Weightlifting training. Above all, she supports her teammates, gym, and coaches and is an invaluable member of the wider CrossFit 6S family.
Whitney comes from an extremely athletic background. She is a high level figure skater and an NCCP Level 2 coach in figure skating. On top of that, she is also a CrossFit coach herself. Never satisfied, Whitney is constantly driven to improve her skill repertoire. She began with Six Lifts Weightlifting because she has a knack for technical-based movements. As a testament to her driven nature, over the time Whitney has been with us, she has competed numerous times under the banner of Six Lifts Weightlifting and has landed herself on the podium numerous times.

Recently, Whitney has encountered a year-and-half long roadblock of injuries and training plateaus. After consultation with her coaches, who adjusted Whitney’s programming, she grinded her way through an incredibly tough training cycle of high volume and intensity. She rose to the challenge, focusing on technical proficiency and recovery, and she broke through this plateau with some new PRs at the end! But more importantly, Whitney’s technical consistency is evident in her lifts and is perhaps her biggest progress. Watch her lift some time, her lifts at 90%, 95%, and 100% look identical to her lifts at 60% and 70%.
She truly shined as a team player when she stepped up to the plate into an impromptu coach role when both Six Lifts coaches were unable to attend the 2018 Summerfest Weightlifting competition. Not only eager to learn more about the competition aspect of the sport, Whitney wanted to ensure that her teammates are well taken care of. She fulfilled the role in a big way, ensuring that first time competitors were at ease while she took care of all the ins and outs of the competition for them so that their athleticism could shine through. Being a competitive athlete herself, Whitney uses all of her knowledge to help lift others up. We are truly fortunate to have her with us!

Currently, Whitney has her eyes set on qualifying for the Ontario Senior Provincial Championships as well as the Master Pan Am Championships in 2019. We wish her the best in her upcoming training cycle and can’t wait to see her hit the big stage!
Tell us about yourself
I’m Whitney, checking off the first box of the masters category, and is a closeted crazy cat lady with only 1 furry side kick Bella.

What do you do for a living?
I am primarily a coach (mostly Figure Skating then CrossFit) but also a Dental Hygienist.

Something people may be surprised to learn about you:
I used to play a Disney Princess and skate professionally for Disney On Ice.

Why did you start Olympic Weightlifting?
I started to improve my lifts with CrossFit in mind, not necessarily competitive Olympic Weightlifting. It was a few years after I joined 6Lifts that I turned my focus more to Oly lifting rather then CrossFit.

Favourite music to listen to while working out?
EDM or rap when I’m lifting heavy.

How would you explain Olympic Weightlifting to people who have never done it?
Lifting a heavy barbell from the ground to overhead in an explosive yet graceful manner. Two types of lifts that are highly technical but look smooth when done well.

What would you say to someone to convince them to try Olympic Weightlifting?
Try it! What have you got to lose? It will teach you strength, patience, and practice in more ways then one.

What do you do for fun?
I enjoy making jewelry, running obstacle course races, and drinking copious amounts of coffee.

What are your goals?
First and main goal: enjoy what you do. Whatever it may be. Secondly: lift on a big stage. Thirdly: never stop making goals and chasing them.

Who inspires you?
Not any one person inspires me, but many and for many different reasons. I am inspired by people who are focused on what they want and work hard to achieve what they want. Seeing the look on someones face when they’ve achieved something they’ve worked so hard to get inspires me. Whether it’s at the gym, in the office, or my kids that I teach. That look of euphoria is contagious and inspiring!

What store would you max out your credit card at?
The grocery store! Imagine the possibilities of all that food…

The strangest talent you have;
I can make dark chocolate disappear very quickly.

Three things left on your bucket list:
Machu Picchu hike, visit the Polynsian islands, walk the Great Wall of China

If you could have one super power…
Fly. It would make Toronto traffic much more reasonable.

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