Sasha Nievas: From the Olympics to the CrossFit Games

Sasha’s sporting career was kicked off at a very young age, and she stood out in many disciplines throughout her teens.

One of her sporting highlights happened when she was 16-years-old; the Argentinian participated at the Youth Olympic Games in weightlifting and won a bronze medal.

Box Latino Magazine had a chance to speak with the 21-year-old athlete, finding out more about her experience at the Olympics, her athletic journey, her personal life and her preparations in the run up to the most important CrossFit competition in the world.

You can find the full interview below:

What did the beginning of your sporting career look like?

My sporting career began thanks to my dad. I started competitive gymnastics aged five and continued until I was 12, then I went into many sports but none of them really hooked me.

I played tennis for two years and moved on to karate, athletics, swimming… I ended up rock climbing, and my dad took me to a conventional gym to gain strength to help with climbing. They practised weightlifting at that gym and the coach told me I’d be a good weightlifter.

He offered to coach me and that’s how I started weightlifting at the age of 13.

What was your experience like at the Youth Olympic Games?

The first day I went to the gym and met my weightlifting coach, he said even without having watched me lift: “You are going to the Youth Olympic Games.”

At the time I had little clue as to what that was, but he had tons of faith in me and we got to work. With the years came the invitation – I had qualified. It was incredible.

But even better than that was winning a medal when I was only 16.

What was your preparation like for the 2020 Open?

I’ve changed my programming a lot this past year, focusing specifically on my weaknesses and taking training a lot more seriously; I now know I want to devote myself to this.

It was a big turn but it gave big results, as I’ve greatly improved for the 2020 Open and I know I can improve even more. So yes, we’re on our way to achieve just that.

Meet the Coach with the Most Latin American Athletes Qualified to The CrossFit Games

What was your reaction like when you received the message that you’d qualified to the 2020 CrossFit Games?

When I first found out it wasn’t official. I got a message from Venezuela, some friends said that they’d heard at the Mayhem Classic that three women had declined their individual invites, therefore three more would come in and I was between them.

But it didn’t come officially from CrossFit, so I was happy but kept calm, without saying anything. And then the official email arrived from the organisation that said that I was invited to the upcoming CrossFit Games.

It’s a dream, especially because of the way it’s played out.

What does your schedule look like for 2020?

I’ve signed up to the Brazil CrossFit Championship, also FitLand (in Colombia) and other events, but my plans have changed a lot since I got the invite to the CrossFit Games.

I haven’t yet decided how the year’s going to pan out, but I believe taking part in competitions outside of my main goal (the Games) would mean interrupting my training.

Yet I could also go to gain experience. I haven’t yet sat down with my coach to decide.

As an athlete, what’s your programming like?

Unidos is in charge of my programming, which is created by Batuque Iribarren – who’s also my boyfriend. What a better person to know me and know my strengths and weaknesses. I’m more than happy with my programming.

There’s always something to improve, but we’re on that path.

I train two sessions a day.

How do you balance your personal life and your life as an athlete, especially considering you’re so young?

At the moment and I’m very thankful for it, I can train full time, so my life revolves around my training, my nutrition and daily routine. I’m home, I do mobility, I read. I dedicate every hour of the day to being an athlete.

It’s the way it should be, not just inside the gym.

Sasha greeted the Latino community to finish off and thanked them all for their continued support.

This article was originally published in Spanish by Box Latino Magazine, a publication covering athletes, coaches and events in the Latin American region. The original article was written by Nicolás Garzón, the BOXROX version translated by Caro Kyllmann. You can find the original version here.

BOXROX has partnered with Box Latino Magazine to grow the coverage of the Latino CrossFit community. If you’re a Spanish speaking reader or interested in knowing more about the scene in Latin America consider giving them a follow @boxlatinomagazine.

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