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October 26, 2023

Golden finding his way by pumping iron

Jayden Chui
Coppell junior powerlifter Caden Golden deadlifts in the Coppell High School Field House weight room. Golden started competing in powerlifting in January and will compete at the USA Powerlifting Raw Nationals in September.

Cold metal plates clang on the floor as the gym rumbles under the impact. Coppell junior powerlifter Caden Golden has just finished deadlifting for the day.

Golden is able to handle much more weight than most teens, recently hitting a personal record of a 315-pound bench press in training, 540-pound squat he hit at a meet at Chapel Hill High School and a 560-pound deadlift that he hit at Ranchview High School.

Despite his impressive lifts, Golden only started strength training this summer, rapidly adding plates to his lifts. He became motivated to stay consistent due to the competitive nature of powerlifting. Golden officially started powerlifting competitively after joining the Coppell boys team in January, and is currently ranked third in the 165-pound weight class regionally.

“I like the competitiveness, the time and effort you have to put into it, and the environment of the gym,” Golden said.

The gym gives Golden an experience where he can de-stress, push himself and have fun.

“Once I’m in the zone, towards the end of the workout, I take my headphones off and my mind goes blank, and it’s like the world isn’t there anymore,” Golden said. “It’s a peaceful moment.”

He also enjoys the motivating atmosphere of the gym and the people that are around him, including teammates and training partners junior Samuel Parada and junior Javier Angulo. Together, Golden and his training partners motivate each other to gain strength and push harder.

“He pushes me to be a better person,” Parada said. “And when it comes down to it, like when I fail lifts, he’s always supportive and there for me.”

Golden is also known for his rigid determination that gets him to push himself to the limits and stay disciplined to his practice, allowing him to grow as a powerlifter.

“He is a really hard worker, he is dedicated,” Coppell powerlifting coach Heath Naragon said. “He doesn’t miss many days and he is always here trying to get stronger and better at what he does.”

However, the high bar he sets for himself often makes Golden forget that he has already reached an advanced level relatively quickly, and he sometimes loses sight of his impressive progress.

“When he fails lifts, he thinks it as a complete failure,” Parada said, “But he is getting mad at not being able to lift a weight that makes 20, 30, or 40-year-olds come up and question how he is lifting that at his age.”

As he progresses, Golden has learned the importance of persevering through various setbacks and accepting that training isn’t always perfect and linear, learning to embrace the highs and push through the lows.

“You have to be able to push through the adversity, like the moments your body is hurting or when you are having a bad lift, because not every day is going to be a good day,” Golden said.

Golden’s mentality that he has developed in the gym has also helped him in other parts of life, motivating him to study more and build better relationships with people close to him.

“His mentality has changed quite a bit, where he now thinks that, ‘That was the old me, and now I am a better person,’” Parada said.

By September, Golden hopes to further hone his skill and participate in the 2024 USA Powerlifting Raw Nationals on Sept. 5-8 in Salt Lake City and become one of the strongest in the nation.

After high school, Golden also hopes to own a gym so that he can foster the same experiences he has had in the gym for other people.

Follow Yug (@YugTalukdar) and @CHSCampusNews on X.

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About the Contributors
Yug Talukdar
Yug Talukdar, Staff Writer
Yug is a sophomore and a staff writer. He has enjoyed since 2017 watching soccer and his favorite team is Arsenal. He reads historical and philosophical fiction such as 1984 as a hobby. Yug hopes to grow in communication, writing and photography skills as a journalist and meet new people. You can contact him at [email protected].
Jayden Chui
Jayden Chui, Staff Designer
Jayden is a senior and a staff designer for The Sidekick. He has experience in content creation and business, amassing over 65,000 subscribers on YouTube at Xskull & Dr. Skull. He is hoping to major in finance and eventually break into the business world. You can contact him through his email, [email protected] or on his Instagram, @jchuiii.

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