The Best Answers from Mattie Rogers’ Reddit AMA

Mattie Rogers is the United States’ strongest -69kg weightlifter, currently holding the national record in the snatch (106kg/233.7lb), clean & jerk (134kg/295.4lb), and total (239kg/527lb). She also took home bronze in the snatch (104kg) and the total (235kg) at the 2017 World Weightlifting Championships, and after news broke last week that Albania’s Romela Begaj may lose her medals due to a doping violation, Rogers could be in line for silver medals.

The 22-year-old recently took to Reddit for a rare AMA (“Ask Me Anything”) in which redditors asked her about everything from her training structure to mindset. Here are a few of her most notable responses.

How Important Are Squats, Really?

Q: Do you pay any attention to your efficiency from yours squats to the lifts (does squatting more help you personally have a bigger clean and jerk, snatch) if not, what seems to help the lifts out the most other than repetition which is obviously the key driver.

A: OK, first: all the olympic lifters that have massive squats, cool tight rad, but what are you comp numbers? That’s all that matters in this sport.

Obviously, a bigger squat means you have stronger legs, which is great for both lifts. I personally have never been a great squatter and my clean has always been very close to my front squat (within 10-12 kilos).

Squat adequately, I love volume to start off a cycle in ALL lifts.

Missing the Lift that Would Have Sent Her to the Olympics

What was going through your head when you called 141 to get a spot on the Rio team?

tbh I have never felt so horrible in my entire life as i was struggling with borderline adrenal fatigue/failure leading up to trials from the months of training prior. I knew I needed something crazy like that going into trials and was prepared for it to come down to that, but day of I just did not have it in me at all

Training Structure

What is the general structure of your training?

Squat, press in the morning. Technical movement, pull, press, accessory work in the afternoon.

Weird Fans

How do you legit feel about being the crush object for so many weightlifting fans? Does it, like, bother you or is it kind of flattering? 

I don’t ever think about that. It used to bother me honestly because I felt like people were discrediting my lifting abilities for silly things like that, but now I just don’t care.

Managing Joint Pain

How your joints feelin?

Oh, my (joints) feel like absolute shit, but that comes with training at the elite level year round even though i’ve only been in the sport for 4 years.

Glucosamine & chondroitin & fish oil help me, I think.

On Focus

What has helped you most in terms of achieving such consistency and focus on the competition platform?

V I S U A L I Z A T I O N. Visualization. Repetition and visualization are key for consistency for sure, especially when it comes to comp time. If you have successfully performed the movement thousands of times in training, then a thousand more times in your head, there will be no doubts when on the big stage.

Life After Weightlifting

Once you’re done with weightlifting, do you see yourself going back to CrossFit?

Nooooooooppppeeeeeee. Unless its just like for fun to keep my old lady bod in check when I’m old and not competing.

Featured image via @iwfnet on Instagram.

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Nick is a content producer and journalist with over seven years’ experience reporting on four continents. His first articles about health were on a cholera outbreak in rural Kenya while he was reporting for a French humanitarian organization. His next writing job was covering the nightlife scene in Shanghai. He’s written on a lot of different kinds of things, but his passion for health ultimately led him to cover it full time.Shanghai was where he managed to publish his first health related article (it was on managing diarrhea), he then went on to produce a radio documentary about bodybuilding in Australia before he finished his Master’s degrees in Journalism and International Relations and headed to New York City. Here, he’s been writing on health full time for more than five years for outlets like Men's Health, VICE, and Popular Science.Nick’s interest in health kind of comes from an existential angle: how are we meant to live? How do we reach our potential? Does the body influence the mind? (Believe it or not, his politics Master’s focused on religion.)Questions like these took him through a lot of different areas of health and fitness like gymnastics, vegetarianism, kettlebell training, fasting, CrossFit, Paleo, and so on, until he realized (or decided) that strength training fit best with the ideas of continuous, measurable self improvement.At BarBend his writing focuses a little more on nutrition and long-form content with a heaping dose of strength training. His underlying belief is in the middle path: you don’t have to count every calorie and complete every workout in order to benefit from a healthy lifestyle and a stronger body. Plus, big traps are cool.