Who is … Morghan King?
Who is Morghan King?
The five-foot Morghan King is America's top-ranked 48kg (106 lbs) weightlifter, and one of three female lifters officially headed to the Rio Games (the others being 75kg/165 lbs lifter Jenny Arthur and 75+kg/165+ lbs lifter Sarah Robles). King earned her Olympic spot at the Salt Lake City-based Trials in early May, where she lifted an 80.0kg (176 lbs) snatch and 100.0kg (220 lbs) clean and jerk for a personal best 180kg (397 lbs) total.
Since the Trials overlapped with the 2016 National Championships, the performance also made King the National Champion for her division.
King was born on October 8, 1985 and grew up in Redmond, Washington. She has one older brother. In high school, she was a state champion soccer player and participated in triathlons. King was such an accomplished soccer player, she received a college scholarship for the sport; she graduated from Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, CA in 2008 with a degree in graphic design.
A 26-year-old King began weightlifting while training at a CrossFit gym in Summer 2012. At that time, coach John Thrush approached her and encouraged her to pursue Olympic weightlifting.
In 2013, King moved to Charlotte, North Carolina to begin training full-time.
King has consistently competed in the 48kg (106 lbs) division, only attempting 53kg (117 lbs) at the 2015 Grand Prix.
She has lifted at the following Pan American events:
2014 Pan American Championships: 167.0kg (368 lbs) total, 48kg division
2015 Pan American Games: 172.0kg (379 lbs) total, 48kg division
Additionally, King has competed at three consecutive World Championships:
2013 World Championships: 160.0kg (353 lbs) total, 48kg division
2014 World Championships: 172.0kg (379 lbs) total, 48kg division
2015 World Championships: 170.0kg (375 lbs) total, 48kg division
As mentioned above, King finished first in her weight class at the National Championships/Olympic Trials this past May with a 180.0kg (397 lbs) total, a personal best. She subsequently made the 2016 Rio Team.
Rio will serve as King's first Olympic Games.
Though she is extremely athletic, King also considers herself a very artistic person - she's even trying to learn guitar. She loves watching "Grey's Anatomy".
A snowboarding enthusiast, King has put the sport on hold so that she does not impact her lifting career. She is a huge yoga advocate and also does Pilates. After her lifting career concludes, King hopes to become a yoga instructor.
King and her boyfriend, CrossFit instructor Dean Kruse, own two rescue dogs. The couple met growing up; Kruse was the one who convinced King to take up weightlifting, and now coaches her.
King's father often calls her "Wheels", a reference to King's soccer origins: As a young player, she would allow the opposing team to get a head start because she enjoyed running them down.
"Once you get on that stage, it's definitely business. But you can't hide that smile, you know?"
Meet the other Rio weightlifters: