John Ceniza ls Backed by Dedication and Drive

Weightlifter John Ceniza’s First Time At the Olympics Will Be Backed by Dedication and Drive

Photographed by Mark Nicdao for the July 2024 Issue of Vogue Man Philippines.

For his first time at the Olympic Games, weightlifter John Ceniza is counting on one hundred percent of all his efforts.

As repeat Filipino Olympians EJ Obiena, Carlos Yulo, and Eumir Marcial make their way to Paris for a second chance at gold, 26-year-old John Ceniza is among the crop that will compete on Sport’s grandest stage for the first time. The Cebuano weightlifter won a silver medal at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games in the men’s 55kg category. At the 2020 Weightlifting World Cup in Rome, he won bronze in the men’s 61kg category.

With Hidilyn Diaz unable to defend her title in Paris, it falls to Ceniza and others like him to repeat the Olympic breakthrough she accomplished. Diaz’s feat has allowed a new mindset to take hold in Philippine sport: taking home the gold is possible, and especially within her and Ceniza’s shared discipline.

With this very real opportunity on the line, the Filipino weightlifters en route to France have raised their training to new heights. “Mas grabe [It’s more intense],” Ceniza says of his current regimen. “One hundred percent of all your efforts, you pour all of your energy into every training.”

Ceniza is currently nursing a neck injury but hopes to be back in the training groove one month before the entire Philippine delegation makes their way to Paris. More than anything, Ceniza says it is this injury that stands in his way of preparing and training properly for the Olympic competition.

“Two times a day, rest day is Sunday,” Ceniza answers about his current training schedule. This is not the life one chooses if one lacks dedication and drive. Despite injuries, Ceniza still dedicates his body to training and optimizing it against the world’s best in the quadrennial meet.

Below, find the stories of our other three featured athletes who embody the resilience and determination to return to the track stronger, overcoming immense pressure to represent the country and secure their place on the Olympic podium.


Vogue Man Philippines: July 2024 Issue

By JASON INOCENCIO. Photographs by MODESTO III BANZON, JOSEPH PASCUAL, MARK NICDAO. Fashion Director: PAM QUIÑONES.Vogue Man Editor DANYL GENECIRAN. Athletes: Carlos Yulo, EJ Obiena, Eumir Marcial, John Ceniza. Art Director: Jann Pascua. Producer: Anz Hizon.
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