An Iron Bar Is A Golden Opportunity


Connor Tomlinson

AJ Lass doing an over head press in the weight room. AJ has been weight lifting for over a year in order to get in shape for his enlistment to the National Guard.

Connor Tomlinson, Staff Writer

      For most of my childhood, I was not involved in a lot of physical activities. Whenever I was not sitting around the house watching TV, I would be riding my bike around, but never much more than that. At the start of my freshman year, I learned that the high school had a weight room that was open to students after school, and one of my friends wanted to start using it. He asked me if I would workout with him, and I agreed, thinking it would just be time for us to hang out. But once we were in the weight room, he encouraged me to actually workout. The workout was fun and I decided to do it again the next day. And the next. My friend taught me what the equipment was and how to work it, and I quickly found out that weightlifting was something I really enjoyed.

    Throughout the following weeks and months, I learned how much of an impact weightlifting had on me. If I knew before, I would’ve started a lot sooner. The weight room was a great opportunity for me to try working out because it has not only helped me better my health and body, but it also is a great way to relieve stress, depression, and anxiety which is not uncommon among high school students. In order to continue weight lifting after freshman year, I’ve worked out after school and signed up for track 4 P.E. Track 4 is one of the options for gym class, taught by Brian Lutter, and teaches students the basics of weightlifting including terminology, safety, and proper lifting techniques.

    There are many students at Johnston who weight lift and workout for sports, to stay in shape, or even just to kill time, and they all use the school weight room to do so. Students have many different views and experiences from weightlifting, but none of them regret trying it and they see themselves continuing to do so after high school. One student in particular, Parker Inman, a senior, doesn’t currently weight lift but has done it before. “It wasn’t hard, it was just boring,” Inman said. “But I would totally do it again.” 

     Zeke Baer-Deffebaugh, a senior, works out quite frequently for the sports he is in, and sometimes even works out outside of his sports. Baer-Deffebaugh is apart of football, track, and wrestling, and also martial arts. In an interview he said “I’ve played sports since I was five so that’s like 13 years.” What got him interested in sports was “just being healthier and – I liked to be stronger than everybody else so I’m competitive as heck.” However he doesn’t just weight lift for sports, Baer-Deffebaugh stated “If I’ve just been feeling really lazy I’ll go workout to boost my self esteem.” As for continuing sports after high school he said “I don’t know if I’ll pursue like any of them, anymore, but I’ll definitely still workout.” He decided to join sports in order to become healthier and live a better lifestyle. 

     Even students who do not participate in sports still enjoy getting in the weight room and lifting. There are students who have been lifting throughout almost all of high school, and others only recently started to workout and are all able to do so in the weight room. Some students workout to gain strength, others stamina, some students workout to become leaner and others who workout to get bigger. There are students that lift because they have a deep passion for working out and others simply because they are bored. What all these students have in common, however, is a desire and drive to make themselves better and reach goals they have set for themselves. Many students who weight lift agree that it’s never a bad choice just to give it a try. Anyone who is interested will want to do light research beforehand, just to get basic knowledge of the subject, and if they really want to know more, I highly recommend they join track 4 P.E. They will not regret it.