July slogan at Solcana: Get Rad; Be Like Eik.
Our two Athletes of the Month, Sara Radjenovic and Jen Eik, have a few things in common, including formidable reserves of strength. These two beasts both bench press like it’s going out of style, have troublemaker knees that they’ve had to work around, and if you put their names together, “Eik and Rad” could be a dymanic duo from a superhero comic or a pair of folk singers out of the 60s.
Eik made an impression during her first appearance at Solcana in 2014 when she earned the award for Best Female Lifter at our inaugural Beginner Powerlifting Meet. She recently joined us as a member this past February. Whether we are working on gymnastics, weightlifting, or metcon, Eik exudes power, control, and athleticism. She makes it look easy because she puts a lot of work in. Her knee doesn’t allow her to do a lot of squatting, and she hasn’t let that stop her for even a second. From the moment she walks into the gym, she’s got a plan and will freely substitute equally or even more challenging movements. If you think about how much time we spend squatting, or doing other movements that demand deep knee flexion, you’ll realize how this could have been an easy excuse for anyone to shy away from hard work, but Eik is continually pushing herself and absolutely crushing it. In addition, she is genuinely kind, funny, a super supportive workout buddy, and an awesome person to be around.
Sara joined us just over a year ago, and has accomplished a ton as an athlete and a gym member since then. It took a little while for her to settle in, like maaaaybe she wasn’t so sure about us, but with time she started opening up, identifying her lifting buddies and finding a rhythm, and now we all get to enjoy her goofy and generous personality, which is a true pleasure! Like Eik, Sara has wonky knees and works really hard despite them. Sara is on our powerlifting team and she recently repped Solcana at her first USAPL meet. She had planned to enter the bench-only competition but switched to full powerlifting (bench, squat and deadlift) because she had no competitors in bench-only. She ended up successfully making a total, a huge achievement because of the difficulty that squatting to regulation depth imposes on her knee, and I feel compelled to mention that she bench pressed 72.5kg, or just a couple ounces shy of 160 lbs. Sara, we’d love you even if your arms weren’t stronger than most people’s thighs, but HOLY BENCH PRESS!