Last month, USA weightlifter Kate Nye went six-for-six in the -71kg weight class to win the 2019 Pan American Championships and bring home three gold medals. That performance helped build to Nye’s current case as being one of the best weightlifters in the country.
But, before she made a 110 kg snatch for a new Junior and Senior Pan American and Junior and Senior American record, she told BarBend that she had been visualizing making that snatch on that platform for the past year.
“I visualized so much this time around,” Nye told BarBend over the phone. “I was coming right off of finals so I didn’t have any stressors coming into this meet. The whole time in Texas I just had time to visualize and think about it. I think the visualization was the biggest thing for me because I could just take the whole week and think about my performance. It was a huge game changer for me because I went in knowing exactly what I wanted to do, and how I was going to do it. I had been visualizing that snatch for the past year.”
When we asked Nye what her favorite memory was from the Pan American Championships she had a hard time choosing just one moment, but a highlight she couldn’t shake was making that snatch.
“That 110 kg snatch,” she said. “It wasn’t even a PR for me, I hit it in training once, but I wanted to have the reds and blues on the bar, and the competition, I just knew it was going to be a big one for me. I hit 2 kilos over my previous America record which I was really proud of.”
Hitting that number for Nye was something she had been imagining, but it wasn’t until the moment that her coaches finally gave her the green light to go for it.
“It was a number I had wanted for awhile, but my coaches hadn’t let me take it on the competition platform yet.” The decision to go for it was bold, but nothing Nye didn’t feel prepared for. Up until the Pan American Championships Nye had been in a strategic training cycle, and also carved out time to practice visualization which she thinks was one of the main reasons why she had so much success in Guatemala City, Guatemala.
“I visualized that 110kg probably over 1,000 times, and I’m very glad to have finally got that done out on the competition platform.”
Now, Nye is visualizing herself on the next big stage at the next major competition, Junior Worlds in Suva, Fiji from June 1st to June 8th.
“I have my eyes on the prize, I want to go to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games,” Nye said proudly. “So now until then, I’m completely focused on that goal. You should expect me to try and do my best and attack some big totals at big international meets, Junior Worlds, Senior Worlds, and all of that.”
Nye is confident in the process, but admits she’s constantly hungry for the next big thing — or lift rather.
“I’m very big on the five increments, If I hit 100, I want 105, and then I want 110. I have been wanting this 110 for awhile. I’m always thinking about the next lift, so now I have my eyes on 115,” Nye said.
With Junior Worlds and several other big competitions coming up this year, Nye has no shortage of opportunities to put these visualization techniques to the test and improve her competition numbers. The biggest goal that Nye is currently visualizing is competing for the US and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Feature image from @katherineenye Instagram page.