Jeison Lopez is a Junior weightlifter from Colombia, and he frequently turns heads with his crazy strong lifts. To further my point, Lopez is only a teenager with two more years of Junior eligibility. His best snatch currently sits at 170kg, and his best clean & jerk at 200kg.
This year alone, Lopez has claimed first at the IWF Junior World Championships with a 356kg total, and first at the Senior Pan American Championships with a 352kg total (his first ever Senior competition). There’s no doubt Lopez is one of the Western Hemisphere’s best weightlifters.
The 2017 IWF World Championships take place this November in Anaheim, California. So we thought it was only fitting to take a moment and learn a little more about this record setting Junior in the lead up to the year’s biggest meet!
BarBend: How long have you been weightlifting?
Lopez: I started lifting seven years ago.
BarBend: What originally got you into weightlifting?
Lopez: I started lifting due to my cousin Wilmer Torres, who is a former national team member who encouraged and inspired me every day. I was motivated because of the challenges and disciplines weightlifting demands.
BarBend: What’s been your greatest accomplishment so far?
Lopez: Recently, it was taking first at the Junior World Championships.
BarBend: You have an amazing snatch. But is there any area you struggle with this lift?
Lopez: Thank you. I actually need to keep working on my technique. Technique is everything, and the base of Olympic weightlifting.
BarBend: How do you prep for the snatch?
Lopez: To prep for snatches, I usually follow a certain amount of pulls, deadlift, and accessory movements for snatch specifically, and I do strength workouts.
BarBend: What’s the greatest lesson you’ve learned from weightlifting?
Lopez: Nowadays you cannot underestimate anything or anyone. Today you may look like a world class lifter, and then tomorrow you might just be an average athlete. That’s why my mindset is to compete against everyone, as if they are the champs of my weight class. I always see every lifter as my principal opponent, every single one.
BarBend: What’s your best tip for a beginning weightlifter?
Lopez: My advice to all the youth-amateur, or just daily enthusiasts is: Be humble at every moment, have discipline, and consistency. Also, work hard and be conscious of every single day and achievement. Do not settle and take things for granted.
If Lopez can continue crushing big lifts and compose a total similar to his 370kg best lift total, then he may find himself in medal contingency at the 2017 World Championships. Until then, we’re excited to see what the future holds for this young weightlifter.
Feature image screenshot from @jeison_lopez99 Instagram page.