Gabriele Burgholzer is the Strongest Girl To Serve

May 11, 2022

Think about being on the Arnold Sports activities Competition and standing among the many greatest on the planet in your sport getting ready for competitors. Gabriele Burgholzer is aware of that feeling nicely. On the 2022 Arnold Professional Strongwoman contest, Burgholzer stood as one of many 10 strongest women on the planet to compete in Columbus, OH.

Burgholzer positioned eighth, however the connection for Burgholzer goes far deeper than simply being a contest participant. The native of Austria feels a connection to its host, fellow Austria native Arnold Schwarzenegger — she’s even generally known as the “Austrian Oaktress.”

“I nearly need to say I adopted in his footsteps slightly bit as a result of he additionally left Austria to go abroad and to make a reputation of himself,” stated Burgholzer.

Burgholzer spent her complete childhood in Austria. In her native nation, the boys are required to hitch the navy earlier than shifting on with the remainder of their lives.

“In Austria, it’s necessary for all males to serve within the navy for a few months to get the expertise,” she stated. “So, my two brothers, my father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and so forth, all served in Austria.”

Gabriele Burgholzer in full military uniform
Courtesy of Gabriele Burgholzer


After graduating highschool, Burgholzer got here to America in 2007 to be an change scholar. As a result of she beloved being in the US a lot, she opted to remain right here completely. Nonetheless, she needed to do greater than merely stay right here. She needed to indicate her appreciation for the nation she now calls house. That’s why she enrolled in the US Military.

“I’ve been granted plenty of alternatives right here that I feel I’d haven’t been granted in Austria. I simply needed to provide again to the group. I needed to thank the U.S. in a way for letting me be and keep right here, and for all of the alternatives I’ve been given.”

Burgholzer has been serving in the US Military for 9 years, and her present rank is as a Workers Sergeant. Her travels have taken her from Fort Jackson, SC, the place she carried out in Fundamental Coaching to Texas, North Carolina, and even Hawaii. She is presently stationed in Fort Knox, KY.

Among the many honors she has acquired embody the Army Excellent Volunteer Service Medal, three Military commendation medals, and extra. In February of 2019, she tried out for the US Military Warrior Health crew. Since August of that 12 months, she has been the one strongwoman competitor on the crew. Burgholzer wasn’t concerned with health as a child, however she has become passionate about strength and power.

“I did strive my hand at bodybuilding, however I discovered that it wasn’t fairly my forte. I most well-liked lifting heavy as an alternative of wanting good onstage.”

Gabriele Burgholzer deadlifting truck tires attached to a barbell
Courtesy of Gabriele Burgholzer


The game of strongwoman turned out to be the proper selection for Burgholzer. She entered her first contest, a neighborhood competitors, in 2019. By 2020, she was crowned America’s Strongest Woman.

“It was frowned upon to be a strong woman and have huge muscle mass. So, (the cheers) bought me going and stored me moving into that route, and I haven’t stopped since.”

Gabriele Burgholzer went on to put second on the 2021 America’s Strongest Girl contest the next 12 months. Her first worldwide contest got here when she competed on the Arnold in March of 2022. Workers Sargeant Burgholzer defined the sensation of representing her new house nation in a global contest below the brilliant lights of Columbus.

“It felt wonderful. It was an unimaginable honor,” she shared. “When you had been to inform me I’d compete with the perfect athletes on the planet in my sport and symbolize each Austria and the U.S. on that stage, I’d thought you had been loopy. It’s a reminiscence that I’ll cherish eternally.”

Burgholzer could not have received that contest, however there are particular to be extra worldwide contests to return, and he or she will probably be prepared. Other than her dedication to coaching, her service and dealing within the Military has served as a bonus to mentally put together as nicely.

“I feel as troopers or any servicemembers, we’re taught from day one to have self-discipline. I feel that for any sport, that is among the bases it’s a must to have. It’s important to be disciplined all through your coaching, your food regimen, your sleep, every part to be in top shape,” she defined. “I actually thank the Military for serving to educate me that self-discipline.”

Gabriele Burgholzer winning Americas Strongest Woman competition
Courtesy of Gabriele Burgholzer


Gabriele Burgholzer made it clear that she was referring to self-discipline, and never motivation, as a result of as all athletes that compete know, the motivation is probably not there daily.

“Similar to within the Military, there are some issues that it’s a must to push your self to do, there are days it’s a must to do this within the health club as nicely. There are at all times good days and unhealthy days.”

After the Arnold contest, Burgholzer needed to bear a number of surgical procedures which have stored her from returning to the energy stage in the intervening time, however she will probably be again, and he or she already has objectives in thoughts. A kind of objectives is definitely in one other sport – powerlifting.

“I need to set the world document within the bench press. I not too long ago hit 325 kilos, and I’ve no method proper now. So, I’m engaged on that, and hopefully I can break the document in my weight class, which I feel is 380.”

Gabriele Burgholzer credit plenty of her success in energy and life to the navy, and he or she feels everybody ought to perceive what it’s prefer to serve this nation.

“I really assume everybody ought to serve within the navy for a few years. It has actually helped me be taught extra about myself, enhance self-discipline, and it has given me a possibility to take a look at an even bigger image of what service members do for this nation,” she defined, “It has additionally given me appreciation for the liberty that all of us get to have. So, anybody which may be contemplating becoming a member of, please do. Clearly, do your analysis to seek out which department is greatest for you.”

Other than being the most effective in her sport, she desires to be the most effective for her sport. Burgholzer desires to encourage extra ladies to get entangled in energy sports activities typically to allow them to turn out to be their strongest selves.

“To all ladies on the market, not simply within the service, however all ladies, come be a part of me in a energy sport. Don’t let society inform you what it’s best to seem like or what you’re presupposed to carry or not carry. Come be a part of me.”

Observe Gabriele on Instagram: @gabi_theaustrianoaktress

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