Lifted the whole nation
Almost everyone has a dream of making a name for ourselves and leaving a legacy behind that benefits our loved ones and those close to us, plus the future generation. Well, there’s Hidilyn Diaz brewing up an Olympic storm! Let’s get to know Hidiyn Diaz as our first Olympic gold medalist in the next parts of this article.
Hidilyn Diaz is not only a weightlifting champion but also a champion of our spirits as she lifted the whole nation when she won the very first gold medal for the Philippines during the Tokyo Olympics 2020. There were a lot of bumps in the road, but she carried herself with pride and dignity. She stood up every time she fell and conquered all obstacles faced leading up to the win. The whole nation clapped and cheered, even shed some tears when she heaved up the 127kg Olympic barbell. Truly, a wonder to behold, and definitely no small feat.
Who exactly is the girl that snatched our hearts?
As you may know, this is not Hidilyn Diaz’s first time being an Olympic athlete. She has also brought home a silver medal and huge hope and potential back in Rio Olympics 2016. This 2020 Olympics was also not her first time to make the country proud and in awe of her skill and talent. The Philippines had a long time running years of not bagging any medals during the Olympics. Twenty years to be exact. Thus, breaking this prolonged period of no wins. What a way to represent the motherland! However grand this achievement is, we always got to start somewhere and Hidylin is no exception to this.
First things first
There’s always a rule that we get motivated by something or someone first before we do a certain action. For Hidilyn, sports have always been in her life like volleyball and basketball, according to Go (2021). Who introduced her to weightlifting? Also stated by Go (2021), her cousin Allen Jayfruz Dias was in fact the one who ushered her into the world of weightlifting; giving her makeshift barbells out of tin cans with concrete in them held together by a plastic pipe. Being interested in weightlifting opened many doors for her as she became a scholar at Universidad de Zamboanga. True to being a focused athlete, she then pursued the sport full time, dropping out in her 3rd year of collegiate years (Go, 2021).
➢ Basic Information
Hidilyn Francisco Diaz was born on February 20, 1991 at Zamboanga City in the beautiful country of Philippines. Adding to that, she grew up in a humble family of 6 siblings, wherein she fits as the 5th child. Moreover, growing up her father was a tricycle driver before pursuing the farmer and fisherman life.
Due to the on-going pandemic, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics were cancelled and has to be moved to the year 2021. So because of this, she had to continue with flexible learning with online classes. Prior to this, she actually took up Computer Science at Universidad de Zamboanga in which she decided to drop out during Year 3 to intensely focus on training.
➢ Other Careers: Military
She was recruited to enlist in which her position now is Staff Sergeant and earning the rank of Airwoman Second Class in the Air Force. Also, she was deemed a Specialty Code Skill in weightlifting there according to Wikipedia.
Bumps in the road
As a national athlete representing the Philippines, we may hope for support with regards to continuing on with special training and more coaches to have the best experience. However, Hidilyn has to ask publicly for financial support regarding her situation. Contrary to what is expected, she received numerous backlash for doing this act of asking the nation for needed support. Despite the negative comments, she proved them all wrong and made them believe she is truly worth every cheer and clap, even tears, because of her unending grind for success. Her asking for support was not well-received but even with no gold medal yet, she had already proven her name in the weightlifting field being the first female weightlifter from the Philippines when she was only 17 years old (Golangco, 2021). Not only that, but cited also by Golangco (2021, she is the first Filipina to bag a medal for the country.
To illustrate how colorful her sports life is, Hidilyn not only has become the Olympic Athlete everyone looks up to, but also a SEA Games and Asian Games Gold medal winner before Tokyo 2020. This pandemic did not stop her from training and keeping the dream in her heart to snatch her biggest win yet.
In one of her Instagram posts, she thanked her team for being such a good one, that there is always a given way to train and lift weights (captioned off of her lifting her training water video). Despite the hopelessness that the pandemic has brought upon us all, she has kept hers alive in the midst of it all. Truly, a Hidilean Effort that many aspire to do and have.
A number of people dream that their child would become someone as great as Hidilyn Diaz not because of her fame, but because of her perseverance, tenacity, and heart to teach those around her. As it has been said, we have to start somewhere. First, we must provide basic necessities for our loved ones in which food, clothing, and shelter is especially provided. You can achieve this through an affordable house and lot in your Pag-IBIG home provided by Bria Homes. Maybe one day, you can build your dream house and actually put in a home gym for your future Hidylin!
Golden Heart and a Golden Future
As Hidilyn posed for proper stance and lifted the barbells that secured her future, she could not help but shed her own tears as if a huge baggage had been lifted off her shoulders. After the announcement of her triumph, several companies had offered her lifetime supplies of either services or products such as milk tea, gasoline, a dream real estate, a car, and many more. Finally, her hard work and heart of gold paid off.
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Written by Adrianne Jane Patinio