Who is Chelsea Mathews?
I’m a 33 years old massage therapist at Massage Envy where I’ve worked for almost 10 years. I’m currently single, and my family still lives in northern Indiana close to South Bend, where I was born. I do not have many hobbies as my life revolves around work, lifting, eating, and sleeping. I do enjoy reading as I have a collection of books, and I love traveling. I try to go somewhere new once a year if possible.
What is your favorite exercise?
I really do not have a favorite exercise. I simply enjoy lifting weights. Of the three lifts for powerlifting, I enjoy deadlifting the most.
Why do you train?
I’ve never really thought about why. I’ve been in sports since elementary school and started lifting weights in high school for track and field. I’ve been hooked ever since. There is huge gap when I stopped exercising, and I was miserable when a friend recommended crossfit and that brought back some happiness, because I was lifting again. Also the feeling of being part of a ‘team’ if you will, felt good. Individually, I enjoy competing against myself, but there is nothing like the feeling of being on a team and supporting one another.
How long have you been training at Force Barbell and how did you get started?
I started at Force Barbell in August 2016, so close to 5 months now. Previously, I did crossfit for four years, but I was not happy with my progress, and I wanted more expertise in the powerlifting field. I did some research and asked around when I found this place.
What were your emotions and feelings when you were taking that first step?
It was humbling and frustrating. It still is frustrating at times, but it’s part of learning and improving the skills I need to lift optimally. I say humbling because I thought I was quite decent in a lift when there was so much more to learn and that is exactly why I joined Force Barbell, to learn from coaches who can get me to where I want to be.
What were your goals?
My goals were to improve my technique in all the lifts and to improve my shoulder health as my shoulder was preventing me from enjoying working out and lifting. I also wanted to do at least one lifting meet.
What goals have you been able to accomplish?
Since coming to Force, my confidence in not injuring myself has skyrocketed. I did ThanksLIFTING early in December. My approach for the deadlift was positive instead of negative. It used to be negative in the sense of ‘am I going to hurt myself?’ Now, I approach deadlift with a positive attitude of ‘I got this’ and ‘I can do this.’ Despite some frustrations, lifting is fun and enjoyable again. Plus the positive attitude that the coaches and other lifters in the Force family have has done wonders on helping me be and stay positive.
What new goals have you set for yourself?
New goals would include new PR’s, and I cannot wait to lift at another meet. Everyday goals would be technique. My biggest focus is doing certain movements correctly as I still struggle with shoulder form. If I can keep that up, my shoulder health keeps improving. Also, patience. I need to learn to have more patience with myself as I’m relearning proper form.
What advice would you give to a new member or somebody looking to get started?
Sleep is crucial. I just bought a new mattress this month so that I would get the best sleep I can to aid in recovery. Being well rested certainly helps in keeping up with the demands of lifting. Also, stay determined. Progress does not always move forward. Sometimes there will be set backs, but the goal is to keep pushing forward to get better and be better.