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Sarah Robles – USA, Weightlifting – Mt. San Jacinto College

Sarah Robles proved she was the best female weightlifter in the United States by winning the U.S. Olympic Trials in Columbus, Ohio in March. The Mt. San Jacinto College alumna lifted a combined 258 kilos (567.6 lbs.) in the snatch and clean & jerk events to beat Holley Mangold by three kilos. Both earned their way onto the Team USA squad – the only females - and will compete in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

Robles, 23, is the reigning four-time national champion for the 75+ kilos division and is also the current American University Women’s record holder for the clean and jerk, a record she set (321.75 lbs.) in 2011 while a student Mt. San Jacinto College.

Robles deals with Madelung’s deformity, a congenital deformity of the forearm. Lifting hurts, but the Olympian applies wrist wraps and gets her forearm massaged and stretched. She writes a blog (http://prettystrongblog.blogspot.com/) with the intent to debunk myths regarding women’s weightlifting. “What we wanted to accomplish with the blog was to make it more female-oriented because we feel that our sport is so male dominated,” Robles told NBCOlympics.com. “We feel that there are so many prejudices or stereotypes or misunderstandings about women and weightlifting and any form of strength training or strength and conditioning.

"Everyone's invited, but we wanted to help reach out to the women of different sports, different abilities, different everything and educate people about Olympic weightlifting, about strength and conditioning."

Robles has only been weightlifting competitively since 2007. She was a discus and shot putter in high school. In 2004, her San Jacinto High School coach got her into weightlifting as a part of her track and field. She quit throwing in 2008 and began weightlifting full-time with renowned weightlifting coach Joe Micela.

Read about more past and present Olympians...