Meet Olympic Hopeful Kristian Abian
I first came to the oval in 2011, for my high school senior graduation party. Overall, I was blown away by the looks of the oval and its facilities. It wasn’t till my second year of university, when I was looking for a place to train, that I remembered the Oval and decided to do a little tour. The weightlifting area blew me away because of the long wooden platforms attached to the cages. So, I bought a membership.
What are your favourite activities here and why?
My favourite activities at the Oval are weightlifting, and playing on the Formula 1 simulator and testing my reaction time, in the ROX. I’ve been super busy since my return to Vancouver, but I want to find time to do some yoga, as well.
How do you find the Oval different from others? What makes us unique?
During my first visit, I admired the beautiful scenery and vast space overlooking the various sporting areas. However, the thing that keeps me coming back to the Oval is the amazing staff and the Olympic weightlifting platform that allow me to perform my weightlifting program every week.
I was introduced to Olympic weightlifting through high school football strength training, and fitness classes. Throughout high school I was decent in “cleans,” but it was my university football strength and conditioning coach that recognized my talent and referred me to a previous Team Canada coach. Now, I continue to invest and train for my dream of taking part in the Olympics. I have been training in Olympic weightlifting for six years as an amateur, and 2-3 years professionally. If it wasn’t for my strength and condition coach spotting my talent and determination, I don’t think I would be where I am today.
How often do you compete? When should we expect to see you going for Gold in the Olympics ☺ ?
I’ve competed 3 times, recently I came in 4th place out of 20 competitors ion Montreal in November for max weight testing, and soon I will be training for Feb 2018 to compete for qualifiers. If I do well, I will be able to compete in Nationals. My current goal is to compete in the next Olympics hosted in Tokyo. #Tokyo2020! I hope to do Canada proud if given a chance in the Olympics and I want to be the best I can be. If I am able to come home with a medal I wouldn’t mind loaning it to the Oval. Currently I am pushing and increasing my weights to squatting 400lbs.
How has the Oval supported you in your fitness journey?
In Vancouver it’s very hard to find a place to practice and train Olympic lifts. With the Oval’s amazing facilities, I’m able to push myself and really focus on technique and strength without the fear of being told to place the weight down. In Olympic weightlifting a lot of energy is expended to complete a lift so by the end when the weight is overhead the risk of injury is high. When one is asked to place weights down, especially after the 200lbs mark. With bumper plates and rubber platforms the ability to grow individually and climb closer to my dream becomes an achievable possibility.
When I’m not lifting, I usually work to support my travel and athletic expenses. In my limited free time I like to watch movies and have dinner with my friends; when all my friends are busy with school or work I like to play racing games at home or just have a quiet day to myself. I record my lifts to send to my coach in Montreal and with the film I have I like to do some small video edits and post my montages to YouTube.
What are your upcoming short and long-term goals?
My short-term goal is to come home from Montreal as a medal winner or even a national invitation candidate. Looking a little further in the future, the title of Olympian would be an amazing fleet in my life.
My long-term goal is to be a personal trainer to inspire young athletes to follow their dreams and give a solid foundation to those pursuing an athletic lifestyle. I enjoy editing so I would also like to grow my YouTube channel from weightlifting montages to small competition Vlogs.