Strength sports training is an arduous process, both physically and mentally. But for professional powerlifter Stefi Cohen, the hardest part of her training has nothing to do with lifting.
Last month, Cohen dropped to a lower weight class so that she could break even more powerlifting records. Shortly afterwards, she posted a video to her YouTube channel which revealed the extreme lengths she goes to in order to drop weight fast ahead of competitions.
In addition to making changes to her diet to cut down, Cohen spends time right before events literally sweating out her water weight in an infrared sauna, which literally heats you up from the inside. She alternates 10 to 15 minute windows in the sauna with short spells cooling down in a pool.
“I cut down to a lighter weight class; I went from weighing 130 , 132 pounds from the off-season, to dieting down to about 125, and then cutting down to 114 water weight,” she explains. “It’s not something that I recommend, not something I endorse, it’s just something that you do as part of the sport, and quite frankly, it’s the most difficult part of being a powerlifter; having to manage and change your weight that drastically in such short periods of time.”
Subscribe to Men’s Health
Cohen also elaborated in the video on the state of mind that she cultivates during competitions.
“Independently of whether you’re prepared or not prepared, professional athletes tend to go into a flow state,” she says. “It’s like a tunnel… I’m not visualizing, I’m not thinking about the lift, I’m not thinking about what I have to do or what I don’t have to do. Literally, my mind is totally blank. I don’t know what music’s playing, I don’t know what people are saying around me, I don’t know if they’re taking pictures of me or not, I don’t know where my mom and dad are, I don’t know anything. All I know is that I’m there, and when my name gets called, it’s my time to go on the platform, and that is all.”
Cohen remains critical of herself, however, even after setting new records: “The day that you ask me ‘what did you think about your performance’ and I tell you ‘I crushed it, I did great, there’s nothing I would change’, that’s the day I retire,” she says. “That’s the day I’m not chasing anything else.”
Source: Read Full Article