Next Level Lion

Athlete Spotlight: Nick Yustin

Nick Yustin will be heading off to Boston College in the fall. There, he will meet new people, navigate a new city and culture, and wrestle with advanced academics. He takes this next step with confidence. As an athlete at Saint Viator High School, he built skills which have prepared him to be adaptable and resilient. He feels confident and optimistic. Nick reflects fondly on his time as a Lion and feels empowered by his athletic experience.

Bill Heniades, an intern at the Good Athlete Project, caught up with Nick to learn more about the lessons he learned competing in hockey, lacrosse, and powerlifting that went Beyond Strength to empower him for this next step.

Bill Heniades: What is your favorite lift?

Nick Yustin: Squat. It’s a classic lift and it’s always been my best. I have fun doing them and they translate well into hockey and sports in general. In powerlifting, I like competing in squat, and in training there are so many squat variations that make it fun and allow you to get creative.

B.H. What are your powerlifting and/or performance goals?

N.Y. I’m trying to steadily increase my powerlifting total and individual lifts. I want to bench 300lbs, squat 495lbs, and deadlift 495lbs by the end of 2020. I also want to stay athletic and become the best hockey player possible.

B.H. Those are big numbers – you’d lift that at what bodyweight?

N.Y. I’m hovering right around 175 lbs.

B.H. What motivates you to train?

N.Y. I train to find my limits and break them. I love pushing myself and seeing what I can achieve. I’m motivated by those around me as well as a personal desire to be the best version of myself in all aspects. Accomplishing something I didn’t think was possible is easily one of the best feelings in the world to me.

B.H. In training, what habits have you found most successful?

N.Y. One habit that I practice is keeping a schedule. I think this is really important to stay productive and motivated, especially when you’re stuck inside and don’t have much to do during Covid-19. This helps me to prioritize my responsibilities, training, and social life in a way to get the most out of each day.

B.H. What lessons have you learned in training that extend Beyond Strength?

N.Y. I have learned that you shouldn’t compare your successes to those around you, and you should never criticize yourself based on someone else’s accomplishments. Strength training (and life in general) is highly individual and harshly realistic, as what might be a small win to one person could be a huge victory for someone else. I think that a lot of people base their own success in regard to others, but this shouldn’t be the case. As much as I want to deadlift 501kg (1,104.5 lbs) like Hafthor Bjornsson, I never will, but I shouldn’t let that get me down. I believe that an understanding of this will help with many aspects of life beyond strength.

you shouldn’t compare your successes to those around you… it’s highly individual and harshly realistic

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