I started training with Will a little more than a year ago, in April 2017. I started doing Crossfit in 2013 but switched my focus to Olympic weightlifting in 2015 and started working with a remote weightlifting coach. I met Will at a weightlifting seminar hosted at the Crossfit gym where I was training and was impressed both with his knowledge and experience in weightlifting and his skill as a coach. At this point I was ready to start working harder and make more of a commitment to weightlifting: get stronger, fix inconsistencies in technique, improve my mental focus, and compete at national and international Masters weightlifting competitions. After reading about the SAA programming, reviewing testimonials, and having an initial consultation call with Will I felt sure that he could help me meet my goals and take my weightlifting to the next level, whatever that meant for me. I can confidently say that joining SAA has been an excellent choice for me and I couldn't be happier about what I've accomplished over the past year.
I'll be the first to say that it hasn't been easy, some days. Will knows how to analyze lifts, give feedback about what's happening, and then incorporate drills into my programming that address what I need to work on. It's humbling to break down a lift you thought you knew and then build it up again, and I still work on technique every day, but at the end of the day I'm stronger and better and the results speak for themselves. Will's programming is tailored to my individual needs as an athlete and each element has a purpose, whether to build strength, reinforce good movement patterns, or to work on my weaknesses. Over the last year I have set new PRs in multiple lifts, including my snatch and jerk, and set a new competition total PR as well. I qualified for and competed at US Masters Weightlifting Nationals in 2019, and qualified for Masters Pan Ams. I've set a new goal to qualify for Masters Worlds, something that wasn't even on my radar a year ago. Will has experience coaching athletes of all ages, and I trust that with his programming I can keep getting stronger in a sustainable way and continue to set and reach my goals.
The SAA community is great and I can't say enough about the positive atmosphere and great coaching, no matter who is there and what we're working on. Everyone who comes in is there to work hard and do their best, but they're also ready to give a word of encouragement and cheer on someone else's PR attempts. It's kind of a cliché to say that a gym is a "community", but at SAA it's really true – from the supportive coaches to the friendliness of the members. SAA seems to attract people who are serious about training, but don't take themselves too seriously, who can push themselves hard and then stop and have a little fun. It's a respectful, friendly place and I really enjoy training at SAA. I can't wait to see what I can do in the next year, and I would recommend Will's coaching and SAA to anyone who wants to get stronger and reach goals they maybe only suspected were possible.