Student breaks world records at local expo

By Eduardo Castaeeda

Cal Poly Pomona student Ana Malagon broke three national and international records at the 14th Annual TheFitExpo Los Angeles – Health and Fitness Convention Event on Jan. 24.

Malagon, a fifth-year accounting student and Bronco Recreation Intramural Complex fitness supervisor, set new power lifting records for the 148 lbs. weight class in the junior division ages 20-23. She is ranked No.2 internationally, No.5 nationally and No.10 overall in her weight class.

Malagon broke the squat lift record of 160 kg. with a lift of 163 kg. She also set a new dead lift record of 197.5 kg. that was previously 177.5 kg. Her total lifts combined set a record of 450.5 kg. Each competitor is given three attempts per type of lift.

“I was really nervous going into the competition because the people at the expo were the elite of the elite. I wasn’t specifically training for this competition, and I ended up doing the best that I’ve ever done,” said Malagon. “I was terrified because I knew how big of a deal it was. There were thousands of people there with a live feed recording us. All of the competitors were on stage for everyone to see.”

Only the top 10 members in the United States Powerlifting Association of each weight class in the nation are invited to participate in the American Cup competition. Malagon was one of 13 women that were invited to the competition. Only three participants were in her weight class.

Susan Salazar, Malagon’s idol, attended the competition and shared the stage with her. Malagon said that Salazar was a source of motivation for her to enter the competition.

Malagon said she entered the competition a week and a half before the American Cup. The expo director asked her to join the competition, after another competitor dropped out.

Although Malagon only had less than two weeks to train for TheFitExpo LA competition, she began weight training in 2012.

Malagon said that she was not interested in fitness until she started running her freshman year. She started weight training to become a better runner, and she eventually pursued power lifting when she realized that lifting weights was slowing her down.

Brett Bailey (’15, technology and operations management) introduced Malagon to the world of weight training. He gave Malagon her first lever belt, which she used at her first competition only months after she started weight training.

“Honestly, she started pretty heavy,” said Bailey. “I was always really impressed with her progress. When she started lifting she actually couldn’t do a push up. If you look at her now, you wouldn’t believe that. It’s crazy to think that she started weight training at the BSC, and now she is a world-renowned power lifter. She did insane at her competition, and I expect her to do even better at her next meet.”

Malagon does not have a formal trainer anymore, as she prefers to do her own programming at her own pace. She said that the only people who see her workout now are her coworkers and students at the BRIC.

As Malagon breaks records at each competition that she attends, she believes that her position as a fitness supervisor at the BRIC has helped her envision new career and fitness goals.

The next record she wants to set is a 1,000 lbs. combined total. Malagon hopes to pursue higher education in campus recreation to become a fitness graduate assistant. She has an offer at the University of Florida to study exercise science in strength and conditioning.

Allyson Caudell, BRIC fitness coordinator, said that Malagon is very passionate and humble about the work she does at the BRIC.

Malagon assists members in weight training workshops that are similar to the power lifts that she competed in at the expo. She teaches students how to execute power lifts correctly in order to avoid injuries.

“She’s highly organized, full of energy and very passionate about what she does at the BRIC,” said Caudell. “Prior to this competition, she’s been able to share her knowledge in our powerlifting workshop. Her accomplishments are really going to help the BRIC because she’s highly educated in powerlifting as a sport. Her position as a fitness supervisor will help her gain more experience and make her stronger in her power lifting endeavors. We’re really proud of her accomplishments. She’s very ambitious, and we’re supportive of what she will do in the future.”

Ana Malagon

Gloria Vanegas / The Poly Post

Ana Malagon

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