Svetlana Zakharchenko, DO, FACEP, director of emergency ultrasound at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey, has always been athletic, but it was one of her residents who inspired her to try powerlifting. “I felt the itch to belong to this club of strong and cool people,” she said. “I tried a squat for the first time, and it felt like we belonged together.” What began as a new hobby quickly grew into a desire to enter a sports competition for the first time in her life. Soon after, Dr. Zakharchenko earned second place at the New Jersey USA Powerlifting Championship. While she enjoys the physical challenge of powerlifting, it’s the mental strength required to succeed that really made her fall in love with the sport. “There is true fear before you load the heavy weight on your shoulders. … It’s all meditative and requires 100 percent concentration to execute,” she said.