Meanwhile in China …
Time for the winter training camp update of the Chinese men’s team.
They are training in the Wuzhishan camp in the Hainan province.
Update: Lu Xiaojun Video,
needs translation translation below!
Thanks to Sean Gu in the comments!
(0:00-0:24) Reporter: During the adjustment period at the end of the training sessions, Guo Xiyan and the two year old Lu Jiaqi arrived to wait for husband Xiaojun so they can go home together. Despite usually having a tough persona, Lu only had his softest side to display in front of his daughter. Xiaojun’s wife and daughter arrived at Five Finger Mountain yesterday. As a professional athlete, Lu has very limited time to spend with his family. If he chooses to continue for another four years, his daughter would be six years old by then.
(0:25-0:49) Lu: She would be elementary school by then. My wife Guo Xiyan has given a lot for the family side of things., more so than myself. She has been taking care of our child on her own. I figured since I already owed her, what difference does it make to owe some more.(Jokingly)
(0:50-0:51) Reporter: You’re such an irresponsible father.
(0:52-1:05) Lu: It’s alright. Since its a recovery period, they are able to come spend time with me during training. This provides me with more motivation.
(1:06-1:29) Reporter: The 33 year old Lu has a very happy family. The multiple competition winning athlete has already won all there is to be won. He is even currently the vice captain of Tianjin’s Sports Team. Retiring and enjoying family life is a normal decision in his case. But he did not choose to leave. This December, he came back to the team and once again picked up the barbell. Is the 33 year old still able to withstand the training?
(1 :29-2:26) Lu: What do think from the look of my face? It’s indeed been harder than it has been before. But since I chose to continue, I want to give an effort. Especially for the National Games next year in Tianjin. I don’t think Tianjin has not ever hosted a weightlifting competition before, so I guess I want to get a gold medal there. Another reason I chose to stay is because there’s a lot I’m not willing to part with. After all, I’ve been weightlifting for around twenty years. Its not easy to just give it up. Im not willing to just part with so many brothers and my coach Yu Jie.
(2:27-2:47) Yu: His decision to stay is not only representative of his physical capabilities, but also of the fact that he does not have any major injuries. Also, continuing at such an ad vanced age, he is a very good role model for the younger athletes.
(2:48-3:07) Reporter: The old saying goes, the old won’t accept their age and want to surpass old Huang Zhong(character from Romance of the Three Kingdoms). This holds true for older athletes. But this refusal is built upon the foundation of the actually possession of ability. Lu’s wife was also a weightlifter. The ultimate decision was reached after a discussion with the family.
(3:07-3:54) Lu: My wife said she does not want to stop me if I possess the ability to continue to excel. If there wer e other youngsters who are catching up to me then she wouldn’t approve of me continuing. I also had the same thoughts. Currently, if there were one or two kids with a 375 or 380 total I would gladly step aside. I mean, you can’t be weightlifting forever right? Its food for the young. (young man’s career) I hope that they will be able to fill my position.
(3:55-4:11) Reporter: Another topic that must be mentioned is Lu’s good friend Liao Hui. Despite rising far above the rest, he missed two consecutive Olympic Games. Lu is very sad for Liao. All these years of brotherly relations has rendered Lu to be unable to allow Liao to continue this path alone.
(4:12-4:50) Lu: After the Olympics, I was resting the entire time. During this time, we asked each other back and forth whether or not the other person is staying. I told him that if you continue then I would too. None of us lack the ability. We only had bad luck sometimes. I encourage him to go for 2020. I told him no matter what happens, I will train by his side on the path to Tokyo.
(4:51-end) Reporter: The Chinese weightlifting team song [wtf they have a team song?? let’s get it!] has the lyrics “cheer for adherence”. For the veteran Lu Xiaojun, these lyrics alone are enough.
Update: Longer video with more interviews.
Also, for some reason the BBC picked up on the upcoming one year ban for the team (3 positives from 2008 and 2012 retests). So far nothing has been announced by the IWF regarding penalties for countries involved. So they aren’t any closer to facing a ban than they have been half a year ago. The interesting thing will be to see from what time on they will count country bans. Maybe they’ll find a loophole to not have them banned for worlds 2017?
Thanks to Sean Gu in the comments!
Specific interview segments (in order)
Liao Hui: (1:46-1:59) I think I only made the decision to continue my efforts after some deep considerations over a period of time. In reality, I never felt like I left the team.
Liao Hui: (2:46-3:06)I felt that just choosing to give up is not a right fit for my career legacy. All these years of hardship and sacrifice would have been for nothing. I feel like I owed it to myself. That’s why I chose to return. No matter what the outcome will be four years from now, I just hope that it is a fair and honest judgement.
Liao Hui: (3:26-4:06) It really was a hard decision to make. Over the course of half a year, I was trying to find different places to sort of vent frustrations and to relax. I traveled to many places but in the end, after coming full circle, none of them offered me the feelings that I wanted. I don’t think I could find the feelings of relaxation anywhere. I always felt there was still pressure on my back. After coming back to the team, it felt that everything was in place again. It was as if nothing had changed.
Xiaojun: (4:07-4:29) As a brother, to see him put in so much work and effort and to not get anything in return, it really pains me. He tells me that he continues not to get something in return. He only wants to make the statement that I, Liao Hui, in the world of weightlifting, is able and capable.
Liao Hui: (4:45-5:04) I feel that this kind of thing is a natural experience in one’s life. I see it as a gift. It has made grow as person. Amidst the feelings of being wronged and helpless, I am thankful for the opportunity of personal growth that this experience has provided. In all, I don’t really care that much. If I continue, I believe that I can still be a capable athlete.
Yu: (5:05-5:20) This time after the Olympics, through our private conversations during our break, he told me that he chooses to give his efforts again. I believe that he is a real man. This is a manly thing to do.
Xiaojun: (5:37-5:45) I told my brother Liao Hui that no matter what happens, lets walk this path together. I’ll be with you on the path to Tokyo.
Liao Hui: (5:45-6:03) In 2008 I became olympic champion and achieved fame as young man. From the sad circumstances in 2012 to the helplessness of 2016, I believe that 2020 is when my time will come.