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These #GirlsWhoLift Are Killing It on Instagram
Los Angeles–based trainer Marisa Inda has been lifting for more than 20 years and knows that a love of lifting starts in the gym and surpasses anyone else's thoughts or expectations. She posted this pic with an epic, hater-bashing caption: "I've heard it all. There have been positive comments and negative ones, but I never stepped foot in a gym to appease anyone but myself. The gym has always been a place to work on ones self. To test your limits, to mold and sculpt your physique; to become better. To get underneath that bar and keep pushing even when it feels impossible. To hold on even when the grit of the bar is tearing away at your hands. To train for months and months to overcome plateaus even if that means you only do that with an added pound. Whatever you're working towards remember why you do it and who you're doing it for and stay the course."
Krissy Mae Cagney is owner of Black Iron Gym and Doughnuts & Deadlifts (which will fill your feed with just as much doughnut porn as lifting porn), and she has come a long way in just about five years. She posted this powerful photo describing how her life has changed since she's been sober and how thankful she is for the healthy body she has earned.
Sarah Bowmar, one of the founders of Bowmar Fitness, quit her marketing job to pursue a full-time career in fitness—but even now she knows it's all about balance. She captioned this Instagram: "...To me- health is more than just curling 35lb dumbbells. To me- health is vitality. Health is being mentally healthy. Health is still living a life outside of the gym. Health is not being a prisoner to the gym. Health is listening to your body. Health is sustainable."
Canadian Robin Gallant, sitting at only about 100 pounds, has competed in both bikini competitions and powerlifting competitions, squatting, deadlifting, and bench pressing crazy-impressive amounts for her size. Her signature high-waisted leggings show off the booty she's worked hard (and squatted heavy) to get. (Stop thinking that lifting heavy will make you bulky—and these other weight lifting myths.)
Leanna Carr, a raw powerlifter and a coach for Iron Woman Strength, has some body-positive wisdom to share with her fellow female weight lifters: "When you look in the mirror and continuously acknowledge every imperfection, you'll never allow yourself to succeed. No one cares about those couple extra pounds or stretch marks. The only person who acknowledges those things is your own harsh inner critic who is causing you stress and preventing yourself from ever reaching happiness. At the end of the day, we are all human beings who deserve to feel confident and be cared for and loved."
Katy Hearn became a social media sensation for using weight lifting to lose her college weight gain, grow sexy muscle, and spark a following of more than 1 million. As a CPT and creator of several fitness plans, she posts tons of progress pics from clients, plus training videos and motivational quotes to get you through your next workout. (Just like Katy Hearn and this writer, weight lifting could change your body image forever.)
Ewa Januszkiewicz overcame two torn ACLs, spine pain, and other health problems as a premier and collegiate soccer player—and now deadlifts 405 pounds, benches 165 pounds, squats 315, and is a competitive powerlifter. She captioned this photo with a simple quote: "Earned not given." As an American record-holder for the squat and deadlift in her junior weight class, you can guarantee Ewa has practiced that mantra in recovering from major injuries to reach the level of success she has today.
At just 114 pounds, Kim Valentine holds the all-time world record powerlifting record with 970 pounds of total lifted weight. She posts tons of training videos (and the occasional cheeky mirror selfie) that will have you in awe of her incredible strength.