How to Understand the Weightlifter’s Mindset (with Dr. A’Naja Newsome)

Dr. A’Naja Newsome, PhD is an educator, weightlifter, and weightlifting coach, and she has studied sports science and athlete psychology both inside and outside the gym. In this episode, we talk about weightlifting in particular: What are the factors that influence performance from within the athlete, and which external factors impact what and how they lift? Which questions are most coaches NOT asking that they should be? And when do normal strategies for contest preparation and peaking simply fall short? We do a deep dive that’s useful for all strength athletes hoping to reach that next level of performance and strength.


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In this episode of the BarBend Podcast, host David Thomas Tao talks to A’Naja Newsome about:

  • Falling in love with sports through softball (2:00)
  • Where do performance and academics dovetail? (6:00)
  •  (10:10)
  • The basics of eating — the science is there, but you have to consider the nuance of the individual when it comes to nutrition (12:00)
  • Bodyweight class and height can have so much impact on movement, and here’s how to understand that better (15:30)
  • Weightlifting strategy (19:00)

Relevant links and further reading: