The Team Behind the Green

Scroll down to meet our team! Our mission is to bring the sport of Weightlifting to everyone while helping them achieve their goals in a fun and supportive community!

A USAW Community Development Training Site

As a club, Keep Pulling has been chosen as the Southeast USA Weightlifting Community Development training site for 2019, 2020, AND 2021! This selection by the governing body of the sport in the United States is based on outstanding achievements and community outreach programs to promote and grow the sport of Olympic Weightlifting.

Each year, only 24 clubs in the nation are selected. USA Weightlifting has recognized Keep Pulling as:

  • An outstanding club whose goals and vision align with the national governing body of USA Weightlifting
  • A Center for Community Development based on our numerous outreach programs and community involvement
  • A nationally recognized Athlete Development and Training Site
  • A club with an extensive history of developing all athletes from beginners to national competitors with the infrastructure (space, equipment, programs, and coaching expertise) to continually support and develop these types athletes

Learn more about this designation below!

2021 USAW Community Development Training Site

2020 USAW Community Development Training Site

2019 USAW Community Development Training Site

"Becoming a Resource" - Article published by USA Weightlifting (May 2019)

Patrick Costello

Club Director & Head Coach

Contact Patrick

  • USA Weightlifting Level 3 National Coach (2015)
  • Girls' Weightlifting Head Coach, Land O' Lakes High School
  • USA Weightlifting Level 1 (2010)
  • USA Weightlifting Level 2 Advanced (2014)
  • MuscleDriver Level 1 Weightlifting Course
  • MuscleDriver Level 2 Advanced Coach’s Course
  • USA Weightlifting LWC Certified Referee
  • USA Volleyball Member – Florida Chaperone
  • USOC SafeSport Certified
  • Heartsaver First Aid, CPR, AED Certified (AHA)
  • USADA Coach’s Advantage
  • Coaching Weightlifting since 2009
  • B.S. Digital Media & Advertising from the University of West Florida

Patrick moved to Tampa in 2007 and joined a local CrossFit gym to lose weight and get back in shape. After a year and a half of doing CrossFit and losing over 40 pounds, he attended a weightlifting seminar with Glenn Pendlay and his 94kg national champion Jon North and was instantly hooked. After that seminar, he has focused primarily on training the Olympic lifts and becoming a student of the sport.

Patrick has been coaching Weightlifting since 2009 and created Keep Pulling in late 2013 to serve as a resource of the sport of Olympic Weightlifting. Since then, Keep Pulling has helped hundreds of recreational and competitive lifters alike by working with novice lifters to building state champions, national medalists, and international team prospects all while fostering a community of inclusion and opportunity for all athletes in the Tampa Bay Area and beyond.

Patrick has traveled to spend time training with and learning from some of the biggest names in the sport including Alex Krychev and Ivan Abadjiev at the Eleiko Weightlifting Academy, Glenn Pendlay from California Strength and MDUSA, and has traveled to drop in at Catalyst Athletics in Sunnyvale, CA. He has also served as Assistant Instructor for USA Weightlifting Level 1 and Level 2 Certification Courses and has conducted Weightlifting seminars around the state of Florida. In 2016, he was elected to the Florida Weightlifting Federation (LWC #14) Board of Directors and served as Treasurer for the organization until June of 2020. Patrick is always seeking out new information and learning from everyone that he can while passing that information on to other lifters and coaches.

Patrick’s mission with Keep Pulling is to provide opportunities and outlets for Weightlifters to find the sport and train in a positive gym environment. He believes that lifters should not be forced to train alone but rather embraced into a flourishing community of like-minded athletes.

Patrick was a three-sport I.B. high school varsity athlete (soccer, tennis, golf) and graduated from the University of West Florida with a degree in Digital Media and Advertising.

Elizabeth Klauka

Assistant to the Director

Contact Elizabeth

  • Bachelors of Science in Biology
  • USA Weightlifting Sport Performance Coach (2016)
  • USA Weightlifting Advanced Sport Performance Coach (2019)
  • USA Volleyball Coach (2005)
  • Head Coach, OTVA Volleyball Academy
  • Head JV Volleyball Coach, Land O' Lakes High School
  • CrossFit Level 1 (2014)
  • CPR/AED Certified (AHA)
  • Coaching Weightlifting since 2015
  • Coaching Volleyball since 2005

Liz is originally from Michigan and spent her life playing competitive sports. She played volleyball as her main sport through high school and college and after that, began training for her first NPC Bikini show. After over a year of competing in physique shows, she discovered a CrossFit gym near her home town of Lansing, MI in 2013 and shifted her focus to CrossFit and Olympic Weightlifting.

Coaching has always been a passion for Elizabeth. She has been coaching volleyball since 2005 and has been the head Junior Varsity coach for Tampa Preparatory School, head coach for a club volleyball team with Orlando/Tampa Volleyball Academy (OTVA), and is an instructor during competitive volleyball camps at the University of Tampa. She has also spent two years working as a Strength and Conditioning Coach for a Division 3 college in Michigan, coached group fitness classes and weekly barbell classes in a CrossFit environment since 2015, and has coached Keep Pulling athletes at multiple local, state, and national-level Weightlifting competitions.

Elizabeth currently works full-time as a middle school science teacher in the Tampa Bay Area in addition to chasing her passion for coaching.

Jonathan Halbreich

Weightlifting Coach

Contact Jonathan

  • USA Weightlifting Sports Performance Coach (L1)
  • Korean Coach Association Weightlifting L1
  • CrossFit Weightlifting Certified
  • CrossFit Level 2 Certified
  • CrossFit Kettlebell Certified
  • CrossFit Gymnastics Certified
  • Korean Coach Association Gymnastics Certified
  • Master's Degree of International Business - University of Wollongong (2005)
  • Bachelor's Degree in International Business - Eckerd College (2004)

Born and raised in Yorktown Heights, NY, Jonathan played mostly baseball growing up.  In 2000, he moved to St. Petersburg Florida to attend Eckerd College where he played rugby and golf while pursuing an International Business degree. During his time at Eckerd College, he fell in love with weight training and dabbled in bodybuilding, powerlifting and Weightlifting. After earning his Bachelor's Degree, he moved to Australia to pursue his Master's Degree in International Business. He was given the opportunity to play a variety of sports and was also able to represent his University in Baseball and won a silver medal at the Eastern University Games.

Jon found Crossfit and Weightlifting when he moved abroad to teach English and South Korea in 2009. He began pursuing an array of fitness-related certificates that would ultimately begin his coaching career in 2013.  In 2014, he took up training Weightlifting full time and began competing in 2015. Two years later, he moved to Thailand where he coached CrossFit and was the Head Weightlifting Coach at Training Ground in Bangkok. After completing his USAW L1 at Crossfit Chiangmai with USAW Coach Mark Cannella, he knew that he wanted to coach full time and share his passion of Weightlifting with others.

After moving back to the Tampa area, Jon is continuing with his training and coaching so that he can continue to help others achieve their fitness goals!

Kenni Lachicotte

Apprentice Weightlifting Coach

  • Girls' Assistant Weightlifting Coach, Land O' Lakes High School
  • B.S., Sport and Leisure Management, Exercise Science Concentration
  • Strength & Conditioning Internship, Eastern Connecticut State University (2020-21)
  • Strength & Conditioning Internship, Harvard University (2020)
  • Weightlifting Team Member, Lindenwood University (2015-17)
  • FHSSA Female Weightlifting Athlete of the Year (2014-15)
  • FHSSA Individual District Champion (2015)

Kenni is a life-long Floridian and attended Academy at the Lakes in Land O’Lakes from PreK through high school graduation. In high school, she lettered in five different sports (Cross-Country, Track and Field, Softball, Cheerleading, and Weightlifting). Kenni went on to win the Weightlifting District Championships, took second place at Regionals, and advanced to the FHSAA State Championships.

Upon graduation, she earned the Lee Emery Award, the Ironman Award, was named Female Athlete of the Year and received an athletic scholarship to compete in Olympic Weightlifting as part of Lindenwood University's four-time national championship team in St. Charles, Missouri. At Lindenwood, Kenni was coached by 1984 Olympic silver medalist Jianping Ma (Ma Strength) and trained along side some of the best University-level Weightlifters in the nation.

An unfortunate automobile accident ended Kenni's competitive Weightlifting career and she left Lindenwood to focus on her recovery. During this time, she transitioned into a coaching role as the Assistant Softball Coach at her high-school alma mater Academy at the Lakes, and helped lead the team to District, Regional, and State Championships in 2018.

Kenni returned to school at Eastern Connecticut State University, where she earned her B.S. in Sports and Leisure Management with a concentration in Sport and Human Performance (Dean’s List) in 2021. During her time at ECSU, she interned and coached the men’s and women’s Cross-Country, Track and Field, Soccer, Lacrosse, and Men’s Basketball teams while completing an internship with Harvard University’s Strength and Conditioning Department focusing on program design and application for all sports.

what are lifters saying?

Being a part of Keep Pulling is an experience that I didn’t know I needed. They are so involved with the community and have the best coaches! Weightlifting is all about bringing people together and everyone at Keep Pulling keeps the door open for anyone and everyone. We have such a diverse and amazing club because of it but the best part of it all is the atmosphere lifting with everyone and just having fun!

Desirae M. – Weightlifting Athlete

When I first walked into Keep Pulling for a community meetup, I was honestly intimidated. I was still a newbie lifter with only two years under my belt and walking into a new gym still made me anxious. I came looking for a new friend or two but quickly found a welcoming community of like-minded lifters. Nobody made me feel weird being the new kid and honestly, I’ve had more fun than I thought possible inside this gym!

Mackenzie R. – Weightlifting Athlete

Something lacking in a lot of remote teams is community. I don’t feel like that’s the case with KP. All of our workouts are tracked with the TrainHeroic app and it gives us a space to comment on the workouts to see how everyone else did and there are also certain exercises with a leaderboard to compare your numbers with other members.

Keep Pulling also runs a Remote Athlete Facebook page for us to post our videos/how we feel about the workouts. This way we can also comment and interact on other lifters’ videos even if they are thousands of miles away.

Sam M. – Remote Athlete

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