Grace’s Elusive Community of Fitness Enthusiasts

Media provided by Miranda Chao Hwang ’24

Although health and fitness is an integral part of many a Grace student’s life, the community of “gym rats” at Grace often goes unseen. 

At The Gazette, we feel it’s important to highlight these students’ accomplishments and illuminate a community that few know about. After all, lifting hundreds of pounds is no small feat! 

The Gazette interviewed several of Grace’s elusive gymrats to spotlight their fitness achievements. 

Name: Adrian Halberg

Gymrat age: 2.5 years

Bench PR: 225 lbs

Deadlift PR: 355 lbs

Squat PR: 285 lbs

Estimated protein consumed per day: 135 grams

Gym motivation: Health, power, and sports (waterpolo)

Favorite fitness influencer: Jay Cutler 

Favorite exercise: Bench

Ultimate fitness goal: To be a college athlete  

Favorite meals: Chipotle double steak bowl and Juice Generation’s protein knockout smoothie; meal prep: chicken breast, mixed veggies, rice

Favorite source of protein: “A good ribeye”

Gym days per week: 5-6x

Name: Cyrus Mailer 

Gymrat age: 7 months 

Bench PR: 165 lbs

Deadlift PR: 250 lbs

Squat PR: 225 lbs

Estimated protein consumed per day: 140 grams

Gym motivation: Aesthetics and strength

Favorite fitness influencer: Noel Deyzel

Favorite exercise: Hip thrusts, max of 225lbs

Ultimate fitness goal: 405 deadlift, 315 squat, 225 bench 

Favorite meal: Chili 

Favorite source of protein: Protein shakes, beans (he’s vegan!!)

Gym days per week: 5x 

Name: Press MacDonald

Bench PR: 205 lbs

Deadlift PR: 405 lbs

Squat PR: 315 lbs

Estimated protein consumed per day: “not enough”

Motivation for going to the gym: sports (baseball), strength

Favorite fitness influencer/bodybuilder: Arnold Schwarzenegger 

Favorite exercise: incline bench

Ultimate fitness goal: to become stronger, but not too bulky (for sports reasons)

Favorite meals: His mom’s food
Favorite source of protein: buffalo wings, steak 

How many times do you go to the gym per week?: 3-4 times

Name: Andrew Pettker 

Bench PR: 185 lbs

Deadlift PR: 315 lbs

Squat PR: 305 lbs

Estimated protein consumed per day: over 70 grams

Motivation for going to the gym: aesthetics and strength, “mental happiness”

Favorite fitness influencer/bodybuilder: Tren Twins

Favorite exercise: bench press

Ultimate fitness goal: to bench 405 lbs

Favorite meals: eggs, chicken and rice, steak, burgers
Favorite source of protein: beef

How many times do you go to the gym per week?: 3-5 times

Name: Keredin Samuel

Gymrat age: around 3 years

Bench PR: 230 lbs

Deadlift PR: 200 lbs

Squat PR: 212 lbs 

Estimated protein consumed per day: 60-80 grams

Motivation for going to the gym: aesthetics, strength and the endorphins 

Favorite fitness influencer/bodybuilder: Asta from Black Clover

Favorite exercise: any variance of push-ups, pull-ups

Ultimate fitness goal: being prepared to fight or protect himself/those around him

Favorite meals: white rice, homemade fried chicken, smoothies
Favorite source of protein: chicken, smoothies

How many times do you go to the gym per week?: 4x 

Grace’s fitness community is just one group that often goes unnoticed, which raises the question of: what other niche communities remain hidden? Whether they are visible in Grace’s culture or not, niche communities are what make Grace such a unique place, and for that reason, they all deserve recognition. 

Miranda Chao Hwang, the author and photographer, is a staff writer and future senior columnist for The Gazette.