By Michelle Poirier

Just six months after her first foray into powerlifting, Kim Magee broke a Canadian record in the World Raw Powerlifting Federation (WRPF) during the Tournament of Power, which took place at the Apex Barbell Club in Burlington on November 12.

Magee, a Keswick resident, now has the Canadian record for deadlifting in the women’s 90-kilogram weight class for the 24-to-34-year-old age range, and the second highest record squat in her class. She is in the tested category of lifters, which means she completes drug tests and is judged only against other tested competitors.

This was her first full power competition, where the competitors complete a deadlift, a squat, and a bench press. During the competition she deadlifted 424.4 pounds, her squat was 314.1 pounds, and she bench pressed 143.3 pounds.

“I feel really excited and proud and ready to beat more records,” she said.

Though Magee said she has always gone to the gym and has been aware of powerlifting, it was only half a year ago that she became interested in competing and switched her training style to powerlifting.

“I feel like there’s always a stigma for women in weightlifting; that you can’t be strong, and you can’t lift heavy,” she said.

“Women, they don’t see themselves as being able to do it, but when you’re actually doing it and training, it’s empowering, you feel strong, and you feel like you can do anything.”

Magee has five competitions coming up in the next six months, including one in Toronto in December and one in Alberta in January.

“I’m going to be trying to get higher numbers on all of my lifts, going for the squat record, and then I want to join the Canadian international travelling team with the WRPF,” she said.

Before a competition, Magee said she will follow a diet plan and work with her coach for six weeks to prepare. Starting with lower weights, moving towards her personal records and improving them, and then backing down again, followed by a few days of rest leading up to the competition.

On the day of a competition, she says she brings her headphones to listen to music with a hard bass beat to prepare mentally and focuses on the lifts and having a positive mindset.

She also says she has a pre-workout drink and eats a lot of candy to get her energy levels up.

“Powerlifting is a great environment and community. Everyone just wants to see you do your best. Everyone’s cheering you on, even people you’re competing against, they just want you to lift the weight that you’re there to lift. It feels like everyone is on your team,” she said.

Magee encourages anyone interested in powerlifting to try it out, especially women.

“[Women] tend to say things like, ‘Oh, I could never lift like that.’ You can, you just don’t think you can, but you’re a lot stronger than you think,” she said.

“A lot of people think you have to lift big numbers to compete, but it’s more just finding the confidence within yourself, feeling good about yourself, and being part of a community that is always going to uplift you.”



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