Lisa Marie Schweizer is a powerhouse, as it says in the book. Since functional fitness has become more and more popular, weightlifting has also received more public attention.
While a few years ago you probably only saw Matthias Steiner with a fighting weight of over 100 kilos, how he moved brute loads at the Olympics, the perception is now also opening up for lighter weight classes. Lisa competes in one of them, in the 140-pound class. While she holds an incredible amount of gold medals and titles as German champion of her class, the field of participants in the competition is now getting a lot stronger for her. Lisa Marie Schweizer is part of the German squad for the Olympic Games in Tokyo! Just being able to compete there is an unimaginable achievement. That's exactly why we took the opportunity to ask Lisa a little for you and capture who she is and how she feels as a new Olympian of the future.
Lisa, before we dare to tackle the actual highlight of this interview: Sport is starting again, the temperatures are rising immeasurably, some tough stages are behind you. So how are you doing right now?
"Let me put it this way: I couldn't do better! But I can clearly see that I've been training for over a year and haven't had a break from training. The body is crying out for vacation and the weather is also playing along. That's why the heat is really bothering me. But I'm looking forward to the next few weeks with full focus. And then we go on vacation!”
To pick up the readers: You've been lifting weights for how long now? In addition, are you a professional weightlifter? How does this work?
"I've been lifting weights since I was 14, so I started in 2009. Since 2019, since I finished my studies with the police, I have been admitted to the police sports promotion group. I am currently completely off duty. Otherwise competitive sport like the one I do would n't work at all."
Sports promotion groups serve as an opportunity for top athletes to build a professional future and at the same time to be able to fully devote themselves to sports. In addition to the police, for example, the Bundeswehr also offers sports promotion posts. Basically, the following applies: The athletes must meet the hiring requirements of the respective position, regardless of whether it is for training or studies. They then start the respective training, but the learning program is stretched, so it takes longer than for normal civil servants. This is intended to ensure that sport and work can be combined without having to make concessions on either point.
Which competitions have you competed in so far in your career and which do you remember most fondly? (Which lifts did you particularly like? Where is the best atmosphere? Which after-show party stayed with you for a long time?
“It all started with a regional championship, then progressed to the German championship, the European youth championship and the student world championship . Finally, I now take part in the "classic" senior European and world championships.
I can't even remember one particular lift that I was particularly fond of, because there are so many! For example the lift that acted as the lottery ticket to the first World Cup. At that time it was 110kg in pushing. I will probably never forget this Bundesliga competition! I was in the middle of my studies, nobody expected such success.”
“In any case, there is always a great atmosphere in Obrigheim during the Bundesliga competitions there. There's a lot going on in the hall!"
"Fat after show party? Thailand! After the World Cup! After that we added a three-day trip to Bangkok to the World Cup.”
Now the Olympics are on the agenda. Did it all come as a surprise? How did that happen? What does the family say, how do you feel?
"It all came as a very surprising surprise. I haven't counted on myself and this success since last spring. I had the least chance of anyone on my team because up until then I had been able to collect the fewest points in qualifying competitions in my weight class. That's why I wasn't even considered for competitions or courses. The capacities were used differently.”
"Thanks to my performance development at the end of the year (thanks to Corona), I even had the chance to attack again. Since March of this year at the training camp, I knew that there was a realistic chance if I could transfer what I did in training to the competitions. At the European Championships in April and in the benchmark competition in Colombia, I was able to recall the training performance. In addition, I was lucky because an entire nation was banned from the amount of doping cases. As a result, I climbed up the rankings and can now go to Tokyo!”
“Of course my family is very happy. They're not the typical weightlifting family that can really feel into it. But of course they are extremely proud and know my way with the ups and downs, but also mental problems that the sport brings with it. Lasting bite and ambition tears I 've shed. Then everyone was always there for me and strengthened me. I'm just relieved and I'm looking forward to the competition!"
How are you preparing for this brutal step in your career? What thoughts are you currently struggling with?
There isn't that much time left, I think 5 weeks. Based on that, I'm in my form and I just have to stay injury-free and optimize what's already going well. Of course it would be ideal if you could still deliver a best performance on the Olympic stage. As always , I try to do my best but not put too much pressure on myself, because that doesn't get you very far.
We're going to a lot of training camps now, three weeks in total. Then we'll fly! That doesn't leave much time to get nervous."
Is the Olympics a milestone for you? Where do you see yourself after weightlifting?
"That's the highest you can achieve in our sport. But I have to say that I never pursued weightlifting with the aim of going to the Olympics. I never imagined that I would actually be able to do it because lifting weights has always been a hobby. At that time I was at a grammar school, not at a sports school. After graduating from high school, I joined the national team, but I studied quite normally. However, I then changed my studies, towards full-time studies in the police force. I also didn't go to the sports promotion group and always fought my way up. My heart is in this sport and this ambition, this bite, it all brought me to where I am now. I was given nothing! That's why it's so nice to know: " Lisa, you did it! YOU! "
I will probably only really realize the whole thing in the Olympic Village, which everyone is so enthusiastic about. I still have no idea how the Olympics feel, how everything works. I'm happy and want to enjoy the time."
“After sport, I definitely see myself as part of the criminal police. I've dreamed of this since third grade! But I will take it with me for the next few years as best I can. After that, I'll attack again, just in a different direction!”
We wish Lisa all the luck in the world in Tokyo, lots of adrenaline that can be transformed into strength and a time that will burn in her life for the rest of her life. Lisa, we are proud of you. The entire Wodstore keeps their fingers crossed for you!
Photos: Michael Dick