Records, Recognitions, and Repetitions

Triton’s own Andrea Boyle finds Astonishing Success after years of Casual Lifting


Boyle photo

Andrea Boyle squatting heavy weight at the IPF Classic World Championship in September, 2021.

While two French braids led to a perfect, long blonde ponytail, tears trickled down a usually cheerful girl’s face, landing on the carpet of a large conference room in Aurora, Colorado. Dreams of a phenomenal day at the Radisson Hotel seemed crushed for Andrea Boyle, an upcoming teen star, competing at the US Powerlifting National Championships. But Andrea’s journey wasn’t over. 

Lifting since she can remember, Andrea found herself in her garage for upwards of four-hour workouts several times a week over the past few years. This room meant for a car was converted into an extensive gym where several champions and well-decorated athletes have trained, including her three brothers — John, Mark, and Luke — who have each won state, regional, or national championships and wrestled at top universities. Her mother Margaret Boyle, a legendary former  Strongwoman, and father Mark Boyle, a fellow Strongman and bodybuilder, used and still use this space to keep up with their strength training and reflect on their family’s immense success. Mark Sr. has coached a small group of athletes here for years, including each of his five children. 

One of Andrea’s constant lifting partners, Julia Boyle, her older sister, has watched Andrea grow up into the young woman she is today. “I always knew that she had something really special so I wasn’t surprised watching her find all this success. Her hard work and determination pay off and I’m really proud of her,” said Julia. 

Andrea keeps up with a busy teen life, with soccer on each weekday and lifting a few nights a week, playing the trumpet in the school’s jazz band, contributing to several clubs, and holding the academic position of seventh in her class of 2023. She has proven to be a well-rounded 16-year-old who packs a lot into her schedule and succeeds in several areas of life. When she had the opportunity to compete in a local powerlifting competition right before COVID-19 hit, she went and won her age group. The next competition? Another win and a ticket to Nationals. 

With this being just her third ever powerlifting competition, Andrea easily felt out of place and faced some adversity early on. “At this point I’ve only been in two powerlifting meets in my life so I wasn’t that experienced,” said Andrea, “I was really nervous going into this meet.” 

Her belt, an essential part of lifting as it increases intra-abdominal pressure and helps stabilize the spine to prevent back or spinal injuries, did not pass regulations. This piece of equipment that she had used for years, something she was used to and comfortable in, was not to be used in competition due to it not being an approved brand. After the long journey to Colorado and months of preparation, she was in a panic, having no clue what to do next. However, hope was not lost yet. 

The woman at the check-in at the Radisson Hotel saw Andrea’s distress, the utter disappointment she was now going through. Miraculously, she had an extra belt, one within the array of approved brands. She wasn’t used to the style and it fit tighter than her usual one, but she did not let this get to her head after a stressful morning.

“You just have to suck it up and deal with whatever situation you are put in,” said Andrea. “At the end of the day no one is going to feel bad if you don’t show up and do the best you can do.”

Andrea went on to an amazing day of competition, securing a National title and an American record in deadlift pulling 303 pounds. With this fresh record and a whole lot more confidence in a once unfamiliar powerlifting world, a strange email appeared in Andrea’s inbox in early July, 2021. What first appeared as a scam or mass email turned out to be from the US Powerlifting Coach directly reaching out to Andrea. Due to these accomplishments, he was very impressed with her lifts and wanted her on the team heading to Worlds in Halmstad, Sweden. Andrea saw this as out of reach and out of mind, while deep down knowing how incredible of an opportunity this would be. 

Her dad got a hold of the message and got to planning the trip. “There was some difficulties, passports had to be rushed, Andrea had to transfer to the US Virgin Islands team due to the US team being disqualified as a whole from drug-related issues,” said Mark. “All and all I knew she would be there. She would bring her A game and show the world who she is and what she’s capable of.”

On September 25th, 2021, Andrea arrived in Halmstad, Sweden, going up against the best competition in the entire world. She had a few days to relax and prepare for the biggest competition of her life thus far. While nervous, she succeeded in all three events on the 27th. In her division she placed second in deadlift, pulling 292 pounds, and 3rd in bench, getting a personal best of 126 pounds, and a fourth place finish overall. 

Despite this outcome on the podium amongst the world’s best, Andrea wasn’t fully happy with her results. “Although I wasn’t really satisfied with my lifting I realized it was an insane opportunity to have anyway,” said Boyle. With her plans of continuing to get stronger, attend more competitions, and possibly join a powerlifting team in college, the future is bright for Andrea Boyle.