Comet athletes get in final weight training session before spring break

Press photo by John Burbridge Charles City freshman Cole White does a power clean while training in the high school’s weight room on Friday.
Press photo by John Burbridge
Charles City freshman Cole White does a power clean while training in the high school’s weight room on Friday.
By John Burbridge sports@charlescitypress.com

CHARLES CITY — Though the slogan has helped sell a lot of shoes and athletic apparel, “Just Do It” doesn’t get it done for veteran Charles City teacher/coach Darren Bohlen.

“If you’re going to go out for a sport, you need to make yourself an athlete … not just a participant,” said Bohlen, who is the Comets’ head football coach and girls track coach.

“If you come out the first day of practice and haven’t done anything during the offseason to prepare you for the sport you’re playing, you’re not doing yourself and your team any favors,” said Bohlen, who is a proponent of strict off-season and on-season weight training.

“Many of our kids play different sports throughout the year,” Bohlen said, “but you always need to be weight training.”

Press photo by John Burbridge Charles City all-district offensive lineman Ryan Zuspan does an overhead lunge during last Friday morning’s weight training session.
Press photo by John Burbridge
Charles City all-district offensive lineman Ryan Zuspan does an overhead lunge during last Friday morning’s weight training session.

The Charles City High School weight room generally has two sessions — before school and after school.

Bohlen presides over the morning session, which starts around 6:30 a.m.

“You get a lot of football players who are not in spring sports during the morning session,” Bohlen said.

Ryan Zuspan, who was a first team all-district offensive lineman for the Comet football team this past fall — and is also an up-and-coming thrower for the boys track and field team — is among the more committed weight room attendees.

Based on maximum power-lift totals, Zuspan has reached the “900-pound Club”.

“That was my maximum at the end of the football season,” Zuspan said during Friday’s morning session — the last before the spring break.

“I hope to get to 1,000 before the start of next football season,” said Zuspan, a junior.

There has been concern posted on social media among students and coaches about how prominent a new weight room would in the plans for a new high school.

“We could use a better and bigger weight room,” said Charles City freshman Cole White. “There’s not much room in here. With more space, we can get more things done.”

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