VISALIA, Calif. - A Visalia woman has been given the opportunity of her lifetime: to compete alongside not only the best, but the most adventurous athletes in the nation. Zhanique Lovett is the elite of the elite. She's the only person from Visalia to ever make the cut to compete in a round of NBC's American Ninja Warrior.
That moment. When the personal trainer and mother of three got the call NBC producers told her "you made it."
"My smile could not even get off my face. I was just overwhelmed with joy. I just felt at peace but also felt like it was a part of God's plan for me. He wants me to inspire other women and other mom's to show them that they can do whatever they put their minds to. I want women to be inspired," she said.
Zhanique Lovett is one of thirty elite athletes in the region chosen to compete in the American Ninja Warrior city qualifier. Something she never thought she'd do.
"You really have to believe in yourself. You have to give yourself a pep talk 'I can do this. I will do this. I will do anything to complete it.' It is really mental," she said.
Lovett is a ninja. She still trains daily for the chance to represent Visalia in the next round of the show in June; something only one other woman has done. The training is a full-time job.
"It's pretty crazy. I actually workout and lift weights at the gym where I work. I usually do it three to four times a week and then I go to CenCal Movement to train on the ninja warrior obstacles. I usually do that three times a week. I also go to Fresno to train," said Lovett.
Lovett's work ethic and dedication inspires her own clients.
"She pushes me as much as I can handle. She's always there for me. She'll work with me. It makes me want to come here more because of her," said Claudia Montion, Lovett's training client.
Lovett said the obstacles she trains for give her strength for anything in her path.
"very high intensity salmon ladder...pull ups...everything you're grabbing on and pulling on it's very fast bursts of energy for me before i got excepted this is something I really want whether I get on the show or I want to be strong enough to get on the show," she said.
Lovett is now allowed to share the results of her first round at American Ninja Warrior she competed in until it airs Monday June 12th on NBC. However, she said regardless of the outcome, she's still training like a ninja.