Lidia Valentín: "I would have liked to be a flag bearer, I have merits"

Lidia Valentín, with her medal in Rio

Lidia Valentín, with her medal in Rio

Lidia Valentín, Olympic weightlifting champion in London 2012, told EFE that "the most important thing for the Games is not to pressure yourself because you gamble all the work of years in an hour and a half of competition"and assured that, with three medals in three Olympic events, she has made merits to be a flag bearer, something that she would have liked" but that did not happen. "

Bercian athlete Lidia Valentín (Ponferrada, León; 1985) accumulates titles and medals in international championships, among them an Olympic gold (London 2012), a silver (Beijing 2008) and a bronze (Rio de Janeiro 2016) in two Games to the that hopes to add a new medal this year in Tokyo. "I aspire to the Olympic podium. I dream of that, it is why I train and what keeps me wanting to continue, "said Lidia, who despite the passing of the years does not lose a bit of ambition to continue making history in sport.

"I have three medals but each Games are very different. The rivals have nothing to do with it and I am not the same athlete as in 2008. What you have achieved is there, it is history for my country, but I do not focus so much on getting a position concrete. Obviously I want to win but this is a way. I like what I do and all the preparation will be seen with the result, "he said.

"The most important thing is to enjoy the process and the competition and not pressure yourself to give your best. Today I don't feel pressure but the moment the Games arrive and we are there, yes. Defending your country is the greatest thing but this is sport and in sport one plus one is not two. I am going to enjoy the Games and I am going to give 200% in the competition. There is no greater satisfaction than knowing that you have given everything, "he said.

After the postponement of 2020 due to pandemic of the covid-19, "that the Games are held is something very positive for all of world sport." "The final stretch remains, the most important thing, and those training sessions that are going to give a lot of information to see how to get there," said Lidia, one of the oldest athletes on the circuit. "Experience and seniority will always play in your favor but also the fact of debuting with that hunger also plays in favor of the athlete. At the level of emotional management and patience, the greater your career, the greater your ability to deal with certain problems, "he added.

One of the aspects that will mark the Tokyo Games is the absence of foreign public and tourists in the stands of the venues or on the competition circuits. "They will be different from normal because this pandemic is not normal either. You cannot think that if there is no public there is no motivation. There is what there is," he stressed.

"The Games is the event that you have been preparing for a long time and I know that I play it all in an hour and a half. By reducing it further I play it in three starting movements and the two times are seconds. Any story can play a trick on you and that's why It is important to enjoy that hour and a half, the warm-up, the strategy and wanting to show what you are worth, "said Valentín, in a ceremony held at the Spanish Olympic Committee.

To finalize the preparation for the Tokyo Games, Lidia Valentín he will go to an island in Russia for three weeks before being able to enter Japan through security protocols. "The important thing is to finalize details. Everything is aimed at those technical gestures and developing your technical capacity in speed, strength and coordination," he declared.

One of Lidia Valentín's dreams for these Tokyo Games was to be flag bearer of the olympic team Spanish but the COE decided to appoint the canoeist Saúl Craviotto and the swimmer Mireia Belmonte. "I would have loved to be me because I have made merits with three medals in three Games but it did not happen and I am happy for them. Mireia is a great athlete, she has four medals in two Games and Saúl has four medals and is an impeccable athlete. Both they are very valid, that's why I don't think about this topic much, "he concluded.


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