Hank’s LiftOff 2023

The morning of September 9th seemed like an ordinary fall day. The sun was shining, brunch was being enjoyed and some were sleeping in. But inside the walls of 6S Fitness, 18 fitness enthusiasts were pushing their limits, stepping outside their comfort zone and preparing to lift some big weights!

The 2023 Hank’s Liftoff was a roaring success! The day started with volunteers and coaches gathering to organize the last few details of the competition and have their morning coffee, of course. Athletes started rolling in around 9am – some knowing what to expect since they’ve participated in years before but most having a little bit of a nervous look as they entered the unknown. Coach Darcy briefed the athletes on rules and tips to succeed followed by a warm up for flight A led by Coach Omkar.

Back squat was the first lift of the day and the one that usually comes with the most nerves. One by one, athletes took the platform and demonstrated their strength, composure and the results of all their hard work as they all crushed their opening lifts and then proceeded to hit PRs!

Bench Press was next. This lift comes with the most commands and the most rules and includes a pause of the barbell on the chest which is something many don’t train with and can make this lift the most intimidating and potentially frustrating. This didn’t stop many from setting new PRs and crushing big weights, though!

After a quick lunch break it was time for the final lift – Deadlift. By now the nerves were mostly gone, the adrenaline was spiking and the candy fueled athletes (thanks Kelly!) prepared to lift the most weight of the day!

It was a day of amazing success. While some athletes went 9 for 9 on the lifts and others had a more frustrating day, everyone left with a new experience under their belt and hopefully a new understanding of what they’re capable of. Some learned that the limits they thought they had weren’t real and others learned they’re more resilient and stronger than what they thought. FOMO was had by all who were there and not competing…

The top 3 female lifters were:

  1. Kelly Dyke
  2. Asiya Ahmed
  3. Suruchi Mistry

The top 3 male lifters were:

  1. Keith Chan
  2. Greg Shink
  3. Matthew Devlin

Rookies of the year were Addie Blohm and Arash Aminianravazi and spirit awards went to JR Slonik and Mary Zhen.

Finally we have to thank Coach Darcy and Coach Omkar for organizing such a great event. We need to thank Dr. Emily Younes for keeping our athletes in tip top shape on the day of lifting and donating prizes. Of course this day would not have happened without all the amazing volunteers who we are so grateful for. They took time out of their Saturday to make this day run so smoothly.

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