Amazing Grace

Senior sets state record in the deadlift

At the Powerlifting State Finals, senior Grace VanArendonk set a state record with a deadlift of 350 pounds. (Courtesy Photo)

At the Powerlifting State Finals, senior Grace VanArendonk set a state record with a deadlift of 350 pounds. (Courtesy Photo)

Mal Meston, Editor-in-Chief

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Setting a state record is extremely difficult for most, but when it comes to senior Grace VanArendonk, it comes easily.

“It is pretty cool that I was able to break the state record and the school record for my deadlift of 350 pounds, but if I had one more year at Shores, I would definitely go for 400 pounds,” VanArendonk said. “It is so satisfying, but I know that I can do more.”

VanArendonk, who won a state title last year in the 114-pound weight class, set the deadlift record in the 123-pound weight class at the 2018 Powerlifting State Championship meet, March 10, at Lake Orion.

Even with the new record, VanArendonk placed second, losing by five pounds with a combined weight of 660 in the three lifts (bench, squat and deadlift).

“Preparing for this wasn’t easy, but I just listened to coach K (varsity football coach Matt Koziak) and followed all of his workouts. I also did Crossfit last spring which really helped with my strength,” said VanArendonk, who was also a member of the competitive cheer team that placed fourth in the state this year. “I knew that coming into the season I had to work hard to reach my goals, and Coach K really helped with that.”

Not only is VanArendonk able to beat state records, but she also succeeds outside of the weight room.

“Grace deserves what she worked so hard to achieve,” Koziak said. “She is going to be one of those kids who deserves everything in life, whether it’s when she goes off to college or joins the Army. Whatever she does, she is going to be successful. She has that mindset and that work ethic that makes her successful.”

Going into this year state tournament as a returning state champion,VanArendonk still knew it wasn’t going to be easy, and that is why she said she remained positive and not too over confident.

“My goal this year was to get my PR’s (personal records),” VanArendonk said. “Winning back-to-back state titles would be really cool, but that’s not what I was going for because I knew that you can’t always win everything. I was in seventh going into my deadlift and jumped to second and

I’ve never been more honored to place second at states.”

Koziak is also proud of what she achieved.

“Obviously, what Grace did (at the state meet) was remarkable, but that wouldn’t be the main reason of why I’m proud of her,” Koziak said. “Her worth ethic is remarkable, and what she did is just an accumulation of the type of worker she is, and that is why I’m proud of her.”

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