Yolandie Weir wins silver at Australian Weightlifting titles - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Yolandie Weir wins silver at Australian Weightlifting titles

5 Nov 2019

Congratulations to Yolandie who has won silver at the 2019 National Weightlifting Championships in Canberra in the 49kg category.

Yolandie Weir, high performance student athlete

Sport: Weightlifting

Study: Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology

Location: USC Sunshine Coast

I’m Yolandie Weir, Olympic Weightlifter, single Mum, business owner/ operator and full time student studying my Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology at USC Sunshine Coast as part of the HPSA Program which provides the support, guidance, assistance and opportunities that allow me to successfully juggle this incredibly busy workload.

In 2014, I was ranked number 2 all time in the world for powerlifting, with numerous World records, countless Australian records and 13 Australian titles to my name. In 2015, I found myself critically ill on life support given little chance of survival. Coming out of hospital, the medications I was on meant lifting wasn’t an option for roughly 12 months. I faced a tough road to recovery having lost every bit of my strength and fitness, walking 100m was excruciatingly exhausting.

Having been an elite level athlete my entire life representing Australia in Marathon Kayaking, being selected on QLD teams in 6 very different sports and winning a total of 18 Australian Titles in 3 very diverse sports, I was determined to recover as fast as I possibly could and get back to competition. Eventually, I was healthy, strong and fit enough to train properly again but my passion to lift was gone. It was time to seek a new athletic pursuit to fulfil my competitive urges, I discovered boxing.

February 2018, after numerous fights, my coach programmed a strength training block where I learned the Olympic lifts of Snatch and Clean and Jerk. Within a few weeks, I found myself on the platform in my first Weightlifting competition where I qualified for the QLD Titles, held a couple of months later. I placed 5th, and I was hooked on the honesty of lifting weight again and the complexity of these two unfamiliar, new lifts.

Deciding to make the switch from boxing to Weightlifting in December 2018 resulted in my training schedule and style completely changing. I began lifting specific training 6 days a week with my sessions involving mobility, flexibility, technique and strength. Being a little older then my competitors, I also find the need to place a huge emphasis on nutrition, recovery, rest and really listening to my body. 14 months after starting, I won the 2019 QLD Titles, secured a place on the QLD Team and qualified for the Australian Titles which was held on October 19th 2019! 

I believed at 33 years old, and being a full time student, my days as a competitive open athlete were over particularly in a new and very foreign sport. Ordinarily, they would be over, however the HPSA program has provided an environment in which I can optimise my recovery, training, minimise stress and excel not just in my athletic pursuits but in every aspect of my life.

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