And now comes our ladies best lifter from USPC Nor-Cal Lift-Toberfest 2021 in Manteca, CA...
Name, age & how long have you been Powerlifting?
Hello, my name is Andrea Villanueva-White, but I also go by Phoenix Babe. I've been powerlifting for about 2 years now and can't wait to see how far this journey will go!
Best lifts in competition?
My lifts in this competition were:
Athletic background? What you did before powerlifting?
I grew up playing many sports, but softball was a favorite and I went on to play college ball before my athletic career came to an end and I became a wife and a mother of two. I dipped into the makeup and special effects industry and then ventured out into the fitness life where I found and took interest in powerlifting!
Honestly, I had no intentions of ever liking powerlifting. It wasn't until one day my trainer had took me under his wing during the pandemic and asked me to pick up 230lbs one day. It wasn't perfect form, but the weight was no issue! From then on we studied the world of powerlifting and now it is my love and my journey!
Tell me something about your gym/team.
My gym is more that just a gym, it is home. Wright Way Fitness Academy accepted me with open arms and has been more than I could ever ask for. And my team??? We are not just any team... we are a family.. everywhere we go you know we are there! The love is so STRONG and the encouragement is absolutely AMAZING! We have each other's backs 100%!
Training alone or training partner/coach, team?
I prefer to train with my family (aka team). We lift each other up, and push each other to levels unimaginable! It's an incredible feeling that I wouldn't trade for the world!
Something most people you train with (or those who follow you if you train alone) don't know about you?
Hmmm, My team knows pretty much everything about me. But I guess something I don't often mention is that I have dyslexia. So when it comes to counting weight on the bar, I tend to panic when I'm put on the spot so I try to do it ahead of time lol
Biggest inspiration in the sport?
Honestly, it's a combination. I take small tips from those around me. Everyone inspires me to do better and seeing those who are stronger than me push to their limits makes me want to do the same!
What's your favorite lift?
For the longest time the Deadlift was my at most favorite lift! I still have a soft spot for the lift, but ever since my top two ribs popped out of place it's been in my head. I'm determined to make it a favorite again though! Currently right now I would have to say the back squat is my favorite! I've made some adjustments and I look forward to train it in the gym!
Least favorite lift?
By far, my least favorite lift is the bench press. My upper body is not as strong as my lower body, but I have been working hard to improve my numbers! We shall see what this next competition brings!
Biggest challenge in your training?
My biggest challenge in training is getting out of my head. I'm constantly battling with my thoughts instead of just having fun! On the days we have fun, the lifting becomes easy. Unfortunately my competitive background keeps me over analyzing my lifts and critiquing my every move. It's a struggle, but those who know me see it and get me to have fun again!
Ideal training atmosphere? Focused and dialed in or noisy and high energy?
The most ideal training atmosphere for me is noisy and high energy! It gives me fuel and hypes me up for my lifts!
Training plan. Do your own programming or have a coach?
I am a trainer myself, however having a coach to plan my workouts is what I prefer. It takes the load off and forces me to push through!
Social media. Positives and negatives
So far social media has been a major positive for me. Everyone is so supportive and I have found that I relate with sooo many people! Anyone who lifts just gets it!
Diet you follow? Supplements?
Currently right now I keep my calories low and the protein high! I'm messing around with different supplements at the moment but my main ones are the MyoFX Sports Nutrition.
Biggest accomplishment in your powerlifting career?
Never in a million years would I have thought possible, but I have actually taken 1st in the nation each time I have competed in the USPC competitions here in Northern California! I am beyond grateful and truly appreciative of all the love and support!
What's one of your non-powerlifting goals?
It is my goal to inspire others to reach their dreams and goals! No matter what it is or who it is, just seeing people excited once they've reached them is truly a special and magical moment to whiteness!
Finally is there anyone you would like to acknowledge or give a shout out to (team, coach, spouse, sponsors)?
I honestly can't thank my family enough. Both gym family and home! I've created bonds I never thought were possible! I'd like to thank my coach, Jody, who welcomed me with open arms and has taken on this challenge to get me to where I want to be! I also couldn't have done this without my teammates, they mean so much to me and I am beyond excited to see them on the protium!
I'd like to thank my kids for joining me in the gym and cheering on mommy in everything I do! Love them to pieces!
And I'd also like to shout out my husband Austin, who has to hear me complain if I have a bad day, and embraces the days I get excited, I can't thank him enough for his unconditional love and support! My circle is strong!