“Women can dress up. Women can lift weights.”
Hidilyn Diaz expressed this statement as part of her greeting for International Women’s Day (IWD) on March 8.
Hidilyn, who won the country’s first Olympic gold at Tokyo Olympics 2020, has been an inspiration to many Filipino women, particularly aspiring female athletes, because of her stellar career that broke stereotypes in sports.
On IWD, the Philippines’ “Golden Girl” made emphasis how women are multi-faceted. She noted the aspects of herself as someone who dresses up and lifts weights at the same time.
“Women can dress up. Women can lift weights. Women can glam up. Women can be a winner,” Hidilyn said.
She further went on and said: “Women can lead. Women can be [public servants]. Women can be [champions]. Women can be [HEROES]. You can’t spell a HERO, without HER!”
“Women can, we can! We can be who we want to be,” Hidilyn continued.
Hidilyn also accompanied her post with previous photos of herself in photoshoots, in a uniform and in weightlifting competitions.
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In the post, Hidilyn also honored and greeted women in the world.
“Let’s continue to make a difference and celebrate the strength, resilience and achievements of women everywhere. Happy International Women’s Day to all the amazing and courageous women in the world,” she said.
The Olympian’s post has since garnered 3,801 likes on Instagram.
Her fans and several personalities, meanwhile, applauded Hidilyn message for the annual global event via the comments section.
Following her victory in Tokyo, Hidilyn fulfilled another goal—to teach and inspire future athletes, including girls, in a weightlifting academy she and her team established in Rizal.
Hidilyn and her husband Julius Naranjo, who’s also her coach, upload videos of their students on Instagram.
The weightlifter is currently preparing for her bid at the coming Paris Olympics in 2024.
The IWD 2023, meanwhile, is celebrated with the campaign theme “Embrace Equity” where inclusivity in the world is advocated.
“We can all challenge gender stereotypes, call out discrimination, draw attention to bias, and seek out inclusion. Collective activism is what drives change. From grassroots action to wide-scale momentum, we can all embrace equity,” reads the official IWD website.