Injury not holding nations best back
DOWN to his third and final attempt and battling an injury, doubts began to creep into weightlifter Rohan Cuffe's mind.
He started to question whether he could handle the 150kg laying on the ground, whether his gruelling training regime had prepared him enough to lift that weight above his head.
But those doubts melted away when it was time for Cuffe to walk out and lift a weight he had never lifted in competition before.
He stepped out onto the platform, signalled to the crowd to cheer for him as he grabbed the Olympic bar, channelling all his inner strength and with one mammoth effort, lifted 150kg above his head, and in doing so, lifted himself into the record books.
Over the weekend, Cuffe competed in the Master Championships and Oly in the Outback 2020 hosted by the Saints Weightlifting club in Miles.
During the competition he put in an extremely strong performace, breaking both the national and state clean and jerk record for males aged between 35-39 after lifting 150kg.
Struggling with an unknown injury and describing the last six months as a rollercoaster, it was unclear how the 36-year-old might perform under the circumstances.
He's spent much of his time as of late visiting various healthcare practitioners, but they have been unable to diagnose the injury.
Usually training six days a week, injury has reduced his regime to three days a week due to pain management, meaning the injury did impact on his preparations for the competition.
"If I were healthy I would be pushing numbers week to week, but at the moment it's a pain management," Cuffe said.
"If it hurts we keep the numbers down, if I feel good, then we go up a little bit, but it's all dictated by that injury."
Cuffe represented the North Brisbane Weightlifting Association over the weekend and competed in the 35-39 age category over the weekend.
Although a little disappointed with his snatch section, lifting 110kg, he fought back hard in the clean and jerk section, lifting an enormous 150kg.
"The first half wasn't quite as good as what I would have liked," he said.
"The snatch portion was a little down on where I could be but coming back from injury it's pretty good."
"However, I'm stoked with the clean and jerk, that was well beyond my expectation.
"I managed to break my state and national record by three kilograms.
"It's something I have been chasing for a while now."
The lifter has been working hard on his rehabilitation for over six months and is glad he has managed to get himself back on track and almost where he wants to be.