ELKHORN, Nebraska (KETV) — In Elkhorn, a 13-year-old girl is conquering the sport of weightlifting and is now a two-time national champion with a mission to win more.
Inside Conqueror Weightlifting gym there's some heavy lifting going on and for 13-year-old Chassity Del Balso, it's light work.
"I got involved with my dad. He was in weightlifting meets and everything and I just got influenced by it," said Chassity.
The teen not only lifts, but she competes in the USA Weightlifting Championship.
The banners hanging on the wall inside Conquer Weightlifting are proof of her abilities.
"I participated in the youth national championship, I was 64 plus in 13 under and I won first place," said Chassity.
It's the second time Chassity has competed on a national stage and took the top honor. Her dad and coach CJ Del Balso said it's an accomplishment he's been preparing her for since she was 4 years old.
"It's good to see those efforts pay off and her applying it on big stages, you know winning national championships. Performing under pressure and performing well when she needs to do it most is very exciting and rewarding as a coach," said Del Balso.
He said it's a lot of fun watching his child enjoy a sport he loves.
"I definitely have to push her at times you know just like any young kids. Sometimes she don't feel like training, but she likes the results of the competitions. That's kind of the motivator. If you want to do these meets, you have to do the preparation," said Del Balso.
That preparation has Chassity lifting 132 pounds in her snatch and when it comes to her clean and jerk, she can lift 172 pounds.
"There's a lot of people crowding you and there's a lot of pressure on you. Also, when you win it feels really great, but if you lose you'll know next time what to do," said Chassity.
Deadlifts are not a part of the competition, but her personal best is 264.
"She's currently the number one ranked lifter in the United States for her age and weight category," said Del Balso.
Chassity considers herself an all-around athlete and participates in school sports when she's not lifting. She said even when she's at school, her strength is on display.
"When the teachers ask me to do something or pick this up, they're always like oh my gosh Chassity you're so strong. I'm like, oh I am, I do lift.
She credits her mom and dad for getting her to this point.
"Also just a blessing from God," said Chassity.
She hopes to inspire other kids her age, proving heavy is a mindset and all you have to do is dream big and lift.
"You just have to get into it and you'll do it," said Chassity.