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Novem’s Barbell Club Athlete of the Year: Lauren!


In honor of Novem’s sixth birthday, we are pleased to announce our current Barbell Club Athlete of the Year! As you know, we have selected an Athlete of the Month every month since we opened our doors. Each athlete that we have selected has been chosen based on their accomplishments, their dedication, and their ability

In honor of Novem’s sixth birthday, we are pleased to announce our current Barbell Club Athlete of the Year!

As you know, we have selected an Athlete of the Month every month since we opened our doors. Each athlete that we have selected has been chosen based on their accomplishments, their dedication, and their ability to inspire and push those around them.

In selecting our Athlete of the Year, we looked for those same qualities on a grander scale. We certainly wanted an athlete who has made tremendous efforts for not just a month, but someone who has worked hard for the entire year+ and has seen big accomplishments as a result. But we also wanted someone who embodied some of the more intangible elements of our community here at Novem. Through fitness, we strive, we suffer, and we persevere – together. The community of our gym is incredibly important to the success of all our athletes. For that reason, we also looked for an athlete who has inspired the community of Novem – not just for a month, but someone who has pushed people to be better all year long, time and time again.

We are very proud to name Lauren Stahley as 2017 Novem Barbell Club’s Athlete of the Year!

Behind the scenes with our Novem’s Barbell Athlete of the Year, Lauren.

How or when did your focus shift to concentrating on Novem’s Barbell Club program?
I transitioned from CrossFit to focusing completely on barbell in the fall of 2015… And I’ve been hook(grip)ed ever since.

Tell us one thing about yourself that no one in the gym knows about you.
I occasionally play the meow game with people at work who make my life difficult… “You’re missing your iv drip because you forgot to request a new one? I see… Well if you put in a medication message right meow, and send a tube, I’ll get it together and send it up meow.” It’s a skill that I continue to
practice, always aiming for the perfect meow.

What is your Athletic background?
I started horseback riding when I was 4, and continued riding into my 20’s. I also competed for a local swim team until I was a teenager.

What is your favorite of the two competition lifts and why?
I have a love/hate relationship with the snatch, so I would have to choose the clean & jerk as my favorite of the two competition lifts. I find the C&J to be the more raw and powerful lift of the two, which suits my bull in a china shop nature. There is something very empowering about driving out of the bottom of the clean, settling, then throwing the bar over your head in the jerk that I can’t imagine being able to replicate anywhere else.

What do you find most rewarding with the competition style of lifting?
It never ceases to amaze me that something that can appear to be relatively simple (wait, I just pick it up and put it down?!?!) can have so many finite components, any of which can make or break a lift. Just a hair too far over the bar here, balance too far on your toes there, failing to engage this muscle or remain active through the entire lift… Any of those things is enough to negatively impact the lift. There are so many things that can and do go wrong, so it is incredibly satisfying when things go right.

Do you have any goals or aspirations to compete?
I have competed at the Liberty Barbell Classic the past two years, and plan to do so again in the spring. I’d like to do more competing in the future, but I want to work on my snatch more before I get too crazy.

How has Novem Barbell Club impacted your training and your life?
I truly think that barbell is probably the biggest factor in my life that helps keep me grounded. It’s my personal brand of therapy; my stress reliever, self esteem booster, body image improver, relationship builder, thought provoker, just to name a few. I think you learn a lot about yourself when you wrap your hands around the barbell, not just as a weightlifter but as a person. Barbell is my home away from home and I can’t imagine what my life would be like without it.

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