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A Nescot student has won a regional powerlifting competition, despite only starting the sport a few months ago.

Lois Anderton, a second-year Level 3 Sport student, even set new records for her squat, deadlift and bench press at the South East Open Championships, winning her category on points.

Lois, who is 17, is now considering whether to compete in the national finals in the West Midlands in April next year, as well as looking for a coach and investigating sponsorship options.

“I didn’t lift as well as I could have done, so it feels good to have set new records when I didn’t even reach my own personal best,” she said.

“Lifting has been something I do as a bit of fun, but maybe this competition shows I should start taking it a bit more seriously.”

Lois competed in the sub-63kg division of the under-18 female category and registered a squat of 125kg, a deadlift of 132.5kg, and a bench press of 62.5kg, compared to her personal bests of 140kg, 140kg and 67.5kg respectively.

She is also the assistant manager of a gym, where she teaches classes in spinning, high-intensity interval training and strength training, as well as coaching clients to reach their fitness goals.

Lois said she has always been interested in sport and fitness, and took gymnastics as a child, but only started lifting weights during the national lockdowns.

Gyms were closed, so she ordered equipment online and taught herself proper form by watching videos online. She strength trains three times as week, as well as teaching classes.

“I’d recommend lifting weights to anyone,” Lois said. “It’s a really effective way to gain functional fitness because it strengthens your heart and lungs and your bones as well as your muscles.

“You will never know until you try it, and it could be the best thing you ever do. Feeling strong is amazing – you can’t match it.”

Students on the Level 3 Sport and Exercise pathway get extra qualifications as part of their course, including first aid, sports coaching and fitness instructing.

Lois is considering working in sports massage or as a coach once she finishes her Sport and Exercise Science qualification at Nescot, and she praised the staff for their support.

“The teachers are great, and they’ve been really helpful,” she added. “The course is really relevant, so I can always apply what we study to my work as well as to my lifting techniques.”

Sports students at Nescot have had an exceptional term, with Lois’s success following Conor representing Great Britain in swimming and Olivia and Daniel winning national titles in karate and judo.

“Lois should be really proud of herself,” said Matt Lavallin, Head of Sport, Public Services and Travel at Nescot.

“She has made exceptional progress in such a short space of time, and she has an exceptional work ethic, so we feel confident she has a bright future ahead.

“It’s brilliant to see our students doing so well across such a range of sports, and we’re proud of every one of them.”

Nescot offers a range of qualifications in Sport, including Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 for school leavers, as well as university-level qualifications.