Five years ago, Amna Al Haddad was a young journalist with an ambition to alter her unhealthy lifestyle. On April 25, she hopes to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
“Before all this, I was a very unhealthy person. I was depressed, and a few pounds overweight (well, I used to think I was a lot more, but I really wasn’t). Then there was a day where I was like, ‘You can do much more than this, you can be better than this’. So, I said to myself, ‘Go and do something. Go for a walk’. And that’s what I did. I went for a walk and that kind of changed my life.”
While Amna discovered her strong competitive spirit and began to focus on competitive weightlifting, she started to look for a training environment with more established infrastructure for female weightlifters.
“After exploring different areas (in the US) I really fell in love with Akron. It was so different than Dubai in every sense – the weather, the people, the atmosphere, the trees. I mean I live in a forest right now. That’s crazy!”
“It’s a journey, that’s the thing. It’s not just going to the Olympics or not. It’s more about learning about who you are, and how you can impact the world in a positive way and that’s what I want to focus on: Keep impacting the world in a positive way.”