OUT LIFTING THE COMPETITION: CrossFit Andalusia’s Bullard, Pugh earn top honor

Published 12:05 am Friday, April 5, 2019

CrossFit Andalusia’s Karen Pugh and Renee Bullard recently competed in the 2019 National Weightlifting Championships in Salt Lake City, Utah, where they came away with some top honors.

“The weightlifting even was held inside the Salt Palace, which is a huge sport facility that housed some of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games,” CrossFit Andalusia co-owner Jason Kelley said. “Karen, along with her training partner Renee, put in many house of special strength work together in preparation of this major event.”

Kelley said that the pair was also mindful of what they ate before the event.

“Both athletes dialed-in on their precision nutrition in the weeks leading up to the competition. Then both converted personal bests on the lifting platform in Salt Lake, as well as qualifying them both for the upcoming Pan Americans. Karen flew back a 2019 National Champion.”

Pugh picked up a pair of silver medal finishes and one bronze medal. Earning any medal earns one the honor of National Champion.

“The focus of this training cycle was to build off of the gold medal performance (Pugh) from Spain in 2018,” Kelley said. “Donnie Thompson, inventor of the fat-bell and bow tie, and now his body tempering methods came through for the athletes once again. Donnie once totaled 3,000 lbs., as a power lifter and explained how it was his Olympic Weightlifting that helped become a juggernaut power lifter and football player. We flipped that at CrossFit Andalusia and used powerlifting to help the Olympic lifts. Donnie has been a football strength consultant for the teams for the Philadelphia Eagles, Clemson, Duke and many others. Thanks to Donnie, and David Weck (inventor of the Elite Bosu) began routine talks with us from his West Coast lab. David opened a whole new world of rotational strength, priming and compression strength work.”

After strong performances at the National Championships, Bullard and Pugh will next compete in the Pan American Championships in Orlando.

“Weightlifters are great inside the U.S., but equally great outside of our country,” Kelley said. “Because of both Renee and Karen’s consistency in their training, they are still helping each other set records where it matters most and that is on the competition platform. Last week, it was against our nation’s best athletes. At the upcoming Pan Ams, they will not only compete against the North American lifters, but also Central and South American athletes too and they are some really good ones. Our Andalusia Olympic lifters have proven they stand toe-to-toe with best, and win. It’s all about them and their success, and I’m very proud of them both. They earn it every single day.”