Gracie Corbett: I just love to do it

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Credit: Courtesy of Gracie Corbett

Sophomore Gracie Corbett jerks a 95 pound bar above her head. Corbett is a weightlifter. “I really like being healthy. I want to make sure I’m always healthy,” Corbett said.

Whether students are pumping iron in the WHS weight room or training per a coach’s instruction, students in Wayland partake in weightlifting for exercise, strength building or even physical therapy. However, for sophomore Gracie Corbett, weightlifting is a hobby that became a passion.

Gracie Corbett began lifting as a way to improve her game within another sport: soccer.

“When I was 10 years old, soccer was my real main thing,” Corbett said. “I was doing a weightlifting class to work on strength and conditioning, and I ended up really loving it.”

Corbett then suffered a knee injury that involved a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and a torn meniscus. Corbett continued lifting as a way to rebound.

“One of the things that’s really important about the ACL recovery is weightlifting,” Corbett said.  “The only way you’re [going to] be really strong is if you have strong quads and hamstrings so you don’t re-tear your ACL. I realized weightlifting had become so important to me, and I didn’t want to tear my ACL again.”

Following her recovery, Corbett continued lifting out of love for the sport. She can be found in either of her two gyms strengthening her muscles and training for competition.

It started as just a hobby, and now I’ve become more serious about it,” Corbett said. “I’m working to figure out how I can start doing competitions.”

Corbett lifts for an approximated 10 hours in a given week, resting just one day in the same span.

“I try to take one rest day partially because of my knee,” Corbett said. “I can’t really run anymore because of my knee. I [take a break from] running for two weeks and [then] try again, and I can’t walk the next day. It’s really hard. I have to rest it for that reason. It’s also important to give your muscles a break.”

Corbett is a teenage female weightlifter, which is a small demographic in her eyes. However, she doesn’t let that bother her from doing what she loves.

“There are not a lot of teenage female weightlifters,” Corbett said. “I’m kind of used to being the only girl. I played on a boys’ soccer team for most of my early time because that was where I liked to play and that was where they needed players. I don’t think it has to do with being female – I just love to do it, and I enjoy being around other people who enjoy doing it.”

When she’s in the gym, Corbett is Olympic weightlifting. She is consistently setting new maxes for her squat, deadlift and her personal favorite: the bench press.

“I get really competitive, so I want to beat my own records,” Corbett said. “I just beat my eight-rep [bench press] max, I did 125 [lbs], so [I] should technically, with a calculator, [be] now at one-rep of 155 [lbs].” 

All in all, Corbett loves weightlifting, as it has opened doors for her to grow as a person and made her a stronger person both figuratively and literally.

“I really like being healthy. I want to make sure I’m always healthy,” Corbett said. “I also like being strong. I guess I also like it because I’m really shy, and it helped [get] me a little confidence in myself.”