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Asen Zlatev: To succeed in sports, you need perseverance! Can not without a psyche!

- What provokes you to get started professionally with weight lifting?

- By accident I came to the Sports School and I just went into the weightlifting group. Here, however, students struggled for high scores. The very preparation from this place brought me to a professional level. I just got to the best in the world. It was a great luck and a great chance for me. It was a pleasure to work with these people.

- Is it harder to win an Olympic medal than another competition?

- Everyone is better prepared for the Olympics, but maybe it's harder. This is because the Olympic Games are on every four years and are more rare than the other competitions. Also, the tension is getting worse for all participants. But because of these the Olympic medals are so valuable.

- And how did you handle the tension?

- I did not do much - Lord gave me a very good and helpful psyche. I'm just lucky in this regard.

- How much training is physical and how much psychological?

- Physical training is more practiced. Little is known about the psychic and therefore there is less emphasis on it. Otherwise, it should be as much physical preparation as mental training. There are basically three types of preparation - physical as technical-methodical, psychological - of consciousness, and the other is nutrition and recovery. These three things for the athlete are inevitable. In human life there is no physics without a psychic and psychic without physics. One is combined with the other and only then can we achieve a positive result.

- You have a lot of honors during your career. What is the secret always to maintain such a high level?

- The answer is very simple - persistence. Persistence in the broadest sense of the word - must be applied to everything we do. Everyday!

- You become an Olympic medalist at the age of 20. What advice would you give to future athletes?

- It is not necessarily every person at the age of 20 to become an Olympic medalist. This is not happening for a day- it should start as early as possible. It took me 9 years. I do not know how to motivate young people. We live in different worlds and do not know if my advice will be adequate to their world. It was quite different for us, the dimensions are different. Otherwise, young people for me are the people of the future and we need to learn more from them than they are from us.

- What is your covenant message to them?

- Sport is a miracle! What can be done with sport can not be done in any other way - even through work. Labor is irreplaceable. Work is irreplacable. It created the human being and will remain with him while he is. But withwork and with all the other activities, you have to do things in a certain way because you know it will happen only that. You are just guided by the result. And in sports you can choose the end result and the way you want to achieve it. Just like a sculpture that you can shape in the time you want, and in a way you choose yourself. At the same time, you combine what you want and what is useful for you.

* The interview is published with edits by the author. All rights to the text created under the project "Olympic Medalists of the City of Plovdiv" belongs to "Youth Center Plovdiv". 

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Project "Establishing Youth Centre in the city of Plovdiv", with the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area 2009-2014 ДО3-9/28.01.2014

Youth Centre Plovdiv - a powerful factor for local development" under the „Local Development, Poverty Reduction and Enhanced Inclusion of Vulnerable Groups” programme with the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area 2014-2021 № BGLD-1.003-0002