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5 Wing Goose Bay member power lifts her way to victory

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MCpl Shanna McKenzie was awarded a trophy for her performance at the
Atlantic Regional Power lifting Competition held Nov. 25-28 at
12 Wing Shearwater. She recorded a deadlift of 287 lbs.

By CPL. KRISTA BLIZZARD

Special to The Labradorian

Master Corporal (MCpl) Shanna McKenzie, a medic currently posted to 5 Wing Goose Bay, surprised the competition as well as herself when she won overall best female lifter for 2013 at the Atlantic Regional Power lifting Competition held last month.

The Atlantic Regional Power Lifting Competition is an annual occurrence held at a different Canadian Forces (CF) Atlantic base each year. This year 12 Wing Shearwater in Halifax hosted the event from November 25 – 28.

McKenzie had only been lifting weights for the past five months as part of her high intensity workout routine, and only found out about the Power Lifting Competition three weeks prior to it starting. She immediately began training in earnest, changing her focus from multiple repetition and cardio to heavy lifting by gradually increasing the weight.

Carly Christian, a Fitness, Sports and Recreation Coordinator with 5 Wing Goose Bay Personnel Support Programs (PSP), nominated Shanna based on her performance at the gym.

“Carly began working with me back in the late spring, early summer,” explained McKenzie. “We would do a lifting portion before our workout and the weights just kept going up.”

McKenzie barely stands five feet tall and only weighs around 126 lbs. She uses no gear; no belt, no wrist straps, no knee wraps, and amazingly she is able to lift over double her own weight.

“My deadlift during the competition was 287lbs,” she notes. “This is the most I have ever lifted. My short term goal is to break 300lbs.” she smiles and goes on to say “I’m really hoping to get the word out to females about this sport. Lifting heavy isn’t just for men.”

The competition was an amazing experience for McKenzie, who instantly fell in love with the sport. When asked how it all started, she said “I went in there looking to meet some people in the community, get some experience, and learn some new skills. I walked away with all that and more. I’m more excited about lifting now than I have ever been and look forward to seeing how far I can push myself. I would love to compete nationally and break some records; with the proper training I’m confident I can get there.”

Sport initiatives, like the Atlantic Regional Power Lifting Competition are important to the Canadian Forces for the physical fitness and esprit de corps of its members. The success of these programs greatly contributes to the operational readiness and effectiveness of the Canadian Forces members. Sports Athletes like McKenzie would not be able to compete without these initiatives or the support from their Bases, Units and PSP staff. 

McKenzie saw the competition as an amazing opportunity and wanted to show her appreciation to those who made it possible for her to attend and compete.

“I would like to thank Carly, her love of the gym is inspiring.” She said. “She is an amazing workout partner and coach. I would also like to thank Cyril Brennan, Deputy PSP Manager, and 5 Wing for providing me with the opportunity to go, and 27 Canadian Forces Health Services Center for granting me the time to compete.”

MCpl McKenzie will be moving to Edmonton in the New Year where she will get involved with the powerlifting community and hopes to start lifting at the provincial level.

           

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