Students lift full-time

Multiple NT seniors have committed to different forms of weight training

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Strength and conditioning has been a fixture of NT athletics for a long time, but students have recently begun to lift or coach lifting individually and/or competitively.
Participating in Crossfit and body building competitions is a full-time job in itself. These activities require a substantial amount of time and commitment, which can include daily training and long tournaments.
Senior Ben Sklansky started lifting throughout his freshmen year after being called “the skinny kid” by friends, teachers, and coaches.
After two years of dedicating time to the gym, he decided to go down the path of competitive bodybuilding. He spends six days a week weight lifting for about an hour and a half, which includes multiple exercises using free weights, body weight and machines.
Sklansky feels the most difficult part of his training is maintaining a strong motivation at times, as well as the strict schedule that comes with the training.
“Often times it takes away opportunities to be social with your friends or family to maintain the lifestyle,” said Sklansky.
Senior Daniel Park began powerlifting in eighth grade, after being introduced to the demanding sport by his older brother.
He even keeps track of his health journey through his YouTube channel and Instagram blog, which is dedicated to sharing his experience with others. As a student at New Trier, he agrees how it can be hard to keep everything in order.
“Juggling school, going out with friends, and working out every day can be a challenge at times, but having a focused mindset is key to staying on track.”
Park enjoys the sport so much, he even spends his time training others. He became a certified weightlifting coach in 2017 and powerlifting coach last October.
Along with his certification, he trains friends and other students at New Trier, educating them on a healthier lifestyle and safety precautions while working out.
“To me, there is no better feeling than helping another person reach their athletic goals and improve their overall well-being,” said Park.
Senior Nathan Khomutov also spends his time training others professionally as a full paying job at multiple Crossfit locations around the North Shore.
During eighth grade, Khomutov began working out in his basement and started to want more of a challenge to get in better shape. He soon joined the Crossfit Wilmette gym to get in better shape, and immediately became attached to the comfortable vibe of the gym.
After years of working out at Crossfit Wilmette, he became inspired to take his journey a step further and become more committed, and he is now certified to coach at the gym, teaching multiple classes.
Khomutov has taught multiple classes and continues to work as an instructor during the week. He also takes classes with his best friend to work on his own physical health
“He and I did not meet because of CrossFit, but we always workout together and it brings us closer,” said Khomutov.
Khomutov has also made other friends from working out and from training them, usually high school or college students from around the area.
Although juggling the two lifestyles of being a student as well as a competitive bodybuilder can bring some downsides, Sklansky says how the encouraging atmosphere of his gym has allowed him to grow stronger, physically and mentally.
“The most important thing lifting has provided for me,” said Sklansky, “is a extreme sense of consistency and self-discipline.”

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