How did you prepare yourself for the Asian Games 2018, both mentally and physically?

I prepared myself to give the best to Indonesia by training physically and mentally, and also by perfecting my techniques. For the Asian Games especially, I went through a few test events alongside routine practice sessions, and a progress test once every three weeks to simulate the match.

How do you feel about being chosen as one of the Ambassadors of the Indonesian teams? What does the role consist of?

I’m very happy to be chosen as an Ambassador of the Indonesian teams to promote weightlifting, and to share my stories through events in cooperation between INASGOC and sponsors to support the Asian Games 2018.

In your field, who is your biggest rival? How will the Indonesian team fare in the Asian Games 2018—breaking a record, for example?

In weightlifting’s 62kg category, my rivals would be Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese and Japanese athletes. Even though breaking the record is hard, the Indonesian team will always give our all and do the best to earn gold.

eko yuli.jpg

What attracted you to this particular sport?

I really like playing sports, and by chance there was a gym near my parents’ house that offered a weightlifting programme. After I joined and did it for a while, it turned out that I have a knack for weightlifting—and even won a championship. So I dedicated myself fully to weightlifting to help improve my family’s economy.

How do you get out of a bad slump, and what do you usually do to motivate yourself or others?

During matches, I have to concentrate hard and believe that I can show all that I've learned and practiced. Fixing mistakes and starting over with a burning spirit and meticulous preparation are important because I have to motivate myself to achieve the target. Remember, your rival is also working hard to hit the target, so you have to get up and fight.

When it comes to weightlifting, what suggestions would you give to the government to improve its support and why?

I hope that the government can commit to long-term support in providing not only training and facilities, but also a good regimen of diet and nutrition to help athletes be ready to compete in bigger competitions.

Do you have a mentor or role model? What advice do you have for the next generation of archers?

Both in training and during matches I always follow my coach’s instructions. The next generation might not be ready yet to compete on an international scale, but they will be in the next few years with continuous training. My advice would be to work hard at it and to focus on achieving the target, because when you commit to be an athlete, you have to get that medal to not waste all the time and effort spent.

What do you think about the prospects for and the treatment of retired athletes, and how do you prepare for your own retirement?

Today’s prospects are actually getting better and winning athletes are much appreciated, which I hope to continue to the future. I do wish to go on working in this field for my family, perhaps as a trainer to train the next generation to keep winning medals at international-level events.

See also: 6 Highlights From Asian Games 2018 Historical Opening Ceremony

Tags: Sport, Society, Asian Games 2018, Indonesian Athletes, Eko Yuli, Weighlifting