• Diaz seeks higher education, builds gym to train aspiring Olympians

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    Rio Olympics silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz shows her medal during a news conference upon her arrival from Rio at the NAIA Terminal 3 in Pasay City on August 11.  PHOTO BY RUSSELL PALMA

    Rio Olympics silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz shows her medal during a news conference upon her arrival from Rio at the NAIA Terminal 3 in Pasay City on August 11. PHOTO BY RUSSELL PALMA

    Rio Olympics silver medalist weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz is keeping herself busy attaining higher education and building a training facility for fellow weightlifters as she sets her eyes on the next Olympics in Tokyo on 2020.

    “My aim is to get four-year degree course and then take a masteral course. I will continue also my training for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. I’m planning to compete in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games and 2018 Asian Games but it depends on the category. Let’s see.”

    Diaz said that she is considering enrolling at the De La Salle University or College of Saint Benilde.

    Diaz received a P5 million incentive from the government through the Philippine Sports Commission for winning a silver medal in the Rio Games. She also received cash rewards from politicians and companies for her feat of ending the Philippines’ 20-year medal draught in the quadrennial meet.

    Diaz said that what she wants now is quality training for her fellow Pinoy weightlifters, “I’m coaching them already but I want to have a concrete plan for them. Coaching is my passion but I still want to learn more in life.”

    The 25-year-old Philippine Air Force weightlifter also used her personal money to put up a gym where she can train aspiring Filipino weightlifters.

    “Before competing in the Rio Olympics, my plan was to build a gym in Mampang, Zamboanga City. I already purchased the land for the gym,” Diaz told The Manila Times in an interview. “I’m now asking for the city government to help me in designing the gym.”

    After her silver medal finish in Rio, the 2015 Asian Championship gold medalist Diaz said that the next step is to win the gold.

    “I’m now targeting to win the gold in Tokyo four years from now. The moment I won in Rio, I told myself I could be victorious in 2020, if I will train hard and perform well. I’m very determined,” said Diaz.

    “There are more things that will happen in the next four years. But for me, I will train until the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The association also gave me two years to prepare for 2020.”

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