This is the inspiring and empowering story of Rabia Shahzad who is a 21 year old weight lifter from Pakistan. She is the only weightlifting female from Sindh who has represented Pakistan in multiple international weightlifting competitions. While representing Pakistan in Hampshire weight lifting competition in the UK, she made her country proud by winning a Gold medal.
How cool is that?
Well that’s not all. She has won a multiple of gold and silver medals in competitions held in different countries. Rabia says that she feels extremely empowered and happy that she has taken up an activity that people assume only men can do. She says she is proving the fact that there is no difference of strength between men and women. Women are equally capable of lifting weights and being as powerful as men.
Most of the weight lifters in Pakistan have a larger amount of fat in their bodies. They should be muscular rather than fatty. This is why Rabia is very strict about her diet. She makes sure she doesn’t consume sugary or oily food. She recently reduced her weight of 54 to 49kgs. In order to reach her desired goal, she reduced all forms of carbohydrates from her diet and increased her protein intake.
She attributes her strength and lean body to her special chicken salad that she eats for dinner. Since she needs to lift weights and that requires you to have a lot of strength, Rabia increased the quantity of chicken in her salad. She says it’s not just a salad but an entire meal which keeps you full for a long time.
She uses cabbage, capsicum, chicken and olives to prepare it. What makes it tasty you wonder? Rabia adds different types of sauces to enhance its taste. While adding sauces she advises people to only use those that have fewer calories.
Rabia is currently planning to participate in the Olympics in 2024. She also plans on opening up a weight lifting institute in Karachi where girls are given the right platform to take up this activity.
Women like Rabia prove that there are no limits and boundaries to a woman’s strength. We should provide platforms for our girls where they can be assisted and groomed to achieve whatever they want.