Aremi Fuentes She is the best Mexican athlete of the whole year. His name is already at the same height as the baseball player Julio Urías, the boxer ‘Canelo’ Álvarez or the golfer Lorena Ochoa. Still, the weightlifter relocates in Didi, takes multiple media calls and performs tik toks dancing just like a character from the children’s movie ‘The Secret Life of Pets.’ Aremi is happy and has made it clear both on the Olympic podium and in her life transformation throughout 2021.
“I have changed, the medal (bronze at the Tokyo Olympics) has made me much more confident of myself as a person and an athlete, having been under a lot of pressure and having faced a competition of great magnitude with great courage left me a very nice experience and it allowed me to get to know myself more in depth, because when you trust yourself you can achieve great things ”, confesses the weightlifter in an interview with El Economista.
Fuentes Zavala was named winner of the National Sports Award (PND) 2021 at the end of October in non-professional sports, the primary category of this award that has been given since 1975. It is only the second representative of weightlifting to win it in all history, after Soraya Jiménez in 2000, just when she was also an Olympic medalist (gold in Sydney).
Aremi describes to this newspaper that the economic prize of the PND 2021, which consists of 796,000 pesos, will be invested in his sports preparation, both for equipment, camps and implements that will serve to seek qualification for the Paris Olympic Games and emphasizes: “Everything prize and recognition that they have given me monetarily, I invest it in my preparation ”.
To reach that position of honor, they were focused on high performance for more than 11 years and, in particular, two Olympic cycles, redoubling efforts first to qualify and then to compete for a medal, which finally took place in Tokyo in the 76 kilogram category. .
How much has your life changed as a result of the Olympic medal?
“It has changed a lot, from the media it is an abysmal change. I mean, every athlete is looking for one olympic medal, but after obtaining it, nobody tells you the commitment you acquire, for example, with (journalistic) interviews, it has cost me a lot because I consider myself a not very expressive girl, but I have adapted. The truth is that it has been quite a big change, but for the better, I have enjoyed this moment, the recognitions and the fact that people see you a little more ”.
In one of her tik toks, the weightlifter shows her successful photos in Such while mentioning the phrase “the gordita is triumphing.” Both in that and in other videos, she shows a frank smile, convinced of who she is, of her performance and of all that she has achieved. This is the result of years of work, but also in a psychological matter.
“Psychological work is very important, it helps you manage the anxiety and nerves of each competition. It is true that nerves will always be present, but psychologist work is about seeing the positive in it and making the most of any situation (…) The feminine and strength are not in conflict, that is the message I try to convey. transmit, that the new generations see the weightlifting as a sport that promises in future competitions ”.
Aremi shares the merit of her medal and the 2021 National Award with her multidisciplinary team, her family and “my second family, those who have been with me in Mexicali”, but within her gratitude she points in particular to Rolando Crespo, her psychologist.
“I do not deny anything, but at the time I suffered a lot. I always spoke to my mother (who lives in the state of Chiapas, like the rest of her family) and said ‘I got injured again’, and the psychologist who has been with me for a long time, Rolando Crespo, pushed me forward, and it also had to do with my willpower, “she said in an interview in August, shortly after being champion in Tokyo.
Although his mentality has changed to strengthen himself, the future objective remains the same: to triumph and fight for the podium in Paris 2024. He is aware that first he will have to pass the 2022 tests, which consist of a World Cup, a championship world and a specialty Pan American. “It will be an intense year, but the first thing is to be in good health and then look for metals,” he says with a serious voice.
In the same way, 2021 served him to consolidate another door alongside sports: academic studies, since he is currently beginning the Bachelor of Physical Activation within the Autonomous University of Baja California (UABC), which he thanks for allowing him studying at her own pace, interspersing the books with the high performance required to be the fourth Olympic weightlifting medalist in the history of Mexico.
“I feel proud, happy that despite the fact that my path has not been rosy, I have gone in search of my dream, despite also the good and bad things that I have gone through. The fact that children and young people see me as a benchmark is a source of pride and what better way than to see the example that everything can be done as long as one is very clear about what they are looking for or want to achieve ”.
What is the phrase with which you would define everything you have lived in 2021?
“With perseverance, you can come to fulfill your dreams,” concludes the weightlifter, always smiling and even more so now that she has been decorated as the best athlete in the country. Of course, her advice carries a much greater weight than what she lifted in Tokyo to be an Olympic medalist.