April 17, 2010
Lenahen's long road back to competition
MARQUETTE – Last August, weightlifterChris Lenahen was preparing to join the United States Olympic Education Center and begin classes at Northern Michigan University, but two days before he was scheduled to come he tore his ACL in practice performing a clean and jerk lift. Doctors informed him that it would be 10-12 months before he would be able to competitively lift again. At that moment, Lenahen set a goal to beat those projections and lift at the 2010 USA Weightlifting National Collegiate Championships nine months later. The event is being held at the Berry Events Center on the campus of NMU, Friday through Sunday April 16-18, in Marquette, Mich.
Despite his injury, Lenahen came to the USOEC and NMU as planned, but his days were filled with rehabbing instead of competing. In rehab he put forth the same dedication that he had in training. “I knew the road would be tough, especially when I found how hard it was re-learning how to walk three weeks after surgery. The most difficult was doing little to no actual weightlifting for the first four months because it had been my life for the last five years.” Now he says, “I’m back and lifting better than before.”
The Marquette community has helped Lenahen through this difficult process, “I have had the time of my life here and I’m proud to call Marquette my home. NMU is a great university and was an easy adjustment coming out of high school. Everyone is very supportive up here and I feel like we have a great atmosphere for training.” He looks forward to lift in front of his university and friends and show them all the results of his hard work.
With the help of the dedicated USOEC staff and his coach Andy Tysz, Lenahen has been able to reach his goal and will be competing in the upcoming meet in the 94 kg weight class (207 pounds). For Lenahen this competition is “the culmination of my long road to recovery and I plan on setting personal records at this meet.”
Tickets for the event are on sale now. Adult admission is $5 for an all-event pass and $2 per day. Students and children get in free. Tickets can be ordered online at www.nmu.edu/tickets, by calling 906-227-1032 or stopping by stopping at any EZ Ticket outlet.