Joining the Team?
Dr. Vitz talks about rejoining the powerlifting team, why it was the right move and the right time.
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Joining the Team?
Season 2/Episode 159
September 6, 2021
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It's gonna happen. There we go, that's the one. Crush it in your hands. Do you like how that feels? 

0:16 Jon
Welcome to The Ted O'Neill Program. Today is Tuesday. And today I'd like to talk with Dr. Andrea Vitz about the beginnings of your powerlifting experience.

0:28 Andrea
Oh yeah, it's a fun time.

0:31 Jon
Now you have very recently rejoined the powerlifting team. 

0:36 Andrea
Yes. In fact, not many people even know that I made a decision. It took probably six months to make this decision to rejoin the team, but I felt like it was a part of my identity that I had sacrificed for EMSO and recognizing I had to devote so much energy and attention to that curriculum development and teaching people and growing the movement and so I kind of gave up my physical strengths and the team sports kind of experience in order to do that, and so I made this decision to rejoin the team and I may be Ted's partner. However, I still knew as respect for him and the team that I wanted to ask if I could come back. And so, I set up an appointment with him and asked if I could rejoin the team. There was a spot for me. He's like, like the team-team? and I said, Yeah, and he's like, okay, like, I think he was just as surprised as anyone else. Because I'd really kind of kept it to myself. I didn't want to make false promises or overextend my energy. I had to make sure that I was ready. But I think he was excited. I was excited to be under his tutelage again in that way. The very first thing he was to me was a coach. And I respect him deeply in that way. And I mean, it's always been that. I think there's maybe one time I ever talked back to him on the floor. That was probably my very early age of being a brat. (I'm sure it went well) Yeah, it was perfect. But yeah, so for me, you know, he's my coach first on the gym floor. I've always been able to have that. That separation because I do respect him so much. And I'm honored to be able to be taught by Him again and led by him again in this way. It's been fantastic for me so far. It's only been about a month and I already feel so much better. I can't even explain to you if you've been strong in your life and then kind of let it go like I think I would still consider myself pretty strong, even two years out of not doing heavy lifting. You know, because you've developed so much strength like in the extreme. (Yeah) That even two years of just doing conditioning or just you know, general workouts, you really do maintain a lot of it and I mean, my back never started hurting again, you know. But it definitely didn't. I didn't feel as powerful in my physical body, as I did before and you don't really know the difference until you experienced that contrast again. And now after a month, I'm like, oh my God, I feel like I could do anything I could lift up a car. So when I first started at Diablo, obviously it was via rehab, you know, I just needed to be. I needed to walk, I needed to be able to work, I needed to be able to play with my child or carry my child. At the time she was like four or five, maybe just barely five. She was four and we very quickly came out of the rehab process, let's say a few months before I was able to actually move in my body and then before you know what, I can get a bar on my back and once you get a bar in your back, the rest is history. You know. (I see) And so I was really the only girl on the powerlifting team for a really long time. And I think that's one of the reasons I got strong so fast. Because I was able to train amongst these guys who were really strong in their own right. Some people starting you know from a lack or a deficit who grew to be very strong. But for the most part, you know, I'm training with guys that are squatting 8 to 1000 pounds and thinking Oh, it's 500 Well, to me like it was it was just the next thing that you would do. (Yeah) And so I went from a severe spinal injury to you know, winning a national championship in the 198 class and getting my elite total and really doing things that were far beyond what was possible when I first met Ted, but to him, you know, when I first met him, he's like, you know, if you want to rehab that back, you have to get a strongest one of my elite powerlifters or my women on the board. He pointed to the board. I had no idea what that meant. I didn't know what it meant to bench 300 or squat 500. Like, I have no frame of reference. (Yeah) And I did just that. And he was right. I had to get that strong to create enough of a barrier to my injury. So then yes, I did take two years off and no my back pain didn't come. So that's just an example of you know, his massive talents. But yeah, so I was always really impressed with how quickly he could develop my plan and see the future. Like he saw me squatting 500 pounds. Probably the first day I met him. The first time I ever benched. He said you're gonna be a threat or adventure. He saw it with his eyes. And I'm like, Okay, I don't know what that means. I didn't have a real strong aversion. I believed everything he said, you know, he has that ability to really get you to instantly trust him. And it was just a really magical experience. It's the only way I can describe it. This is the only place in the world I know where magic is actually happening. You know, that I've been to (Yeah) and I've just, I was just blown away and everyone around me was just like what's happening to you? You're just different. You know, you're just so much more confident. You look great. You're and I mean, I was 177 pounds. I think when I walked in the door, I was like 183 when I got my elite. I mean, I dropped 20 pounds of fat and gained 20 pounds. Last drop 20 pounds gained 20 pounds to get the composition that we needed that would be most optimal. And he always knew how to do it. And it was always like, how do you know? It's like how do you know what I'm thinking? How do you know what I'm feeling? How do you know what I can do? How do you know what I can't do? (Yeah) So one of my favorite lines from him also yesterday, we talked about skimping. He doesn't scam. He always says, you know, what's impossible? Like what's the impossible thing that you think you could never achieve that you would like to and then you get to there? So I'm forever grateful for that. And I'm really honored to be back on the team. We have the best team we've ever had by far, just incredible people.


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