Tia Toomey is working towards the Commonwealth Games trials on the Gold Coast in March.
Tia Toomey is working towards the Commonwealth Games trials on the Gold Coast in March. Mike Richards

CrossFit prompts new Games focus on weightlifting

THIS time last year, Tia Toomey was a dedicated hurdler, focusing on the sport with all of her energy.

Ten months after taking up CrossFit in the hope of improving her hurdling, Toomey is heading along a different path in her longshot quest for a spot in the Commonwealth Games team for Glasgow later this year.

It is not selection for the hurdles Toomey is now chasing, but rather one in the weightlifting team after switching out of track and field in July.

"I started with Gladstone CrossFit in February and I went to a competition in Brisbane and came first," Toomey said.

"My coach Miles Wydall found me and he got in contact and wanted to help me out with lifting."

After only six months and one nerve-wracking competition, Toomey is now ranked 2nd in the Oceania Junior 58kg division.

In her brief time in the sport Toomey has also improved her lift to 146kg, enough to get to the Commonwealth Games qualifiers.

"That is in March on the Gold Coast. I am waiting on details but it is the trials," she said.

"I am probably more looking at Gold Coast Commonwealth Games (in 2018), but to get to trials is great experience," she said.

With no pressure on to make the team this time around, becoming accustomed to competition is likely to be the biggest gain for Toomey in the Gold Coast trials, unless she surprises and slips into the team for Glasgow.

At just 20-years-old, there is plenty of time for improvement, especially seeing as Wydall and Toomey have only been working together for six months.

"Miles is great, I am so appreciative of his help that he gives me," Toomey said.

"I am still doing CrossFit too, the Opens start on February 26 and regionals are in Wollongong on May 16, so I am juggling both trials."

A shift worker who is also intent on travelling to Brisbane in order to train with Wydall as often as possible, Toomey has a very strong work ethic.

More time and experience will show just how far her career can go, and she is not discounting a trip to Glasgow in 2014.

"If I get there it would be amazing. I am training hard but people have been doing it a lot more than I have," Toomey said.



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