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Phillip Liao - 2018 Commonwealth Games Rep

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We’re joined by Phillip Liao, 2018 Australia Commonwealth Games Representative in Olympic Weightlifting. Phil graduated with a Masters in Physiotherapy with 8 years of physio experience under his belt. He now runs an online coaching and educational platform called the M3 Initiative that empowers and educates other individuals, coaches and members of the fitness industry. 

In this episode, Phil discusses his experiences leading up to the 2018 Commonwealth Games and how leaving his long-term relationship helped fuel this pivotal decision. Phil talks candidly about his transition from a predominantly Asian high school into an Anglo-centric university, and how the culture shock pushed him to navigate new social interactions that he wasn’t accustomed to. We also dive into the experiences of navigating his identity as a second generation Asian-Australian.

We explore Phil’s perspective on racial bias along with unpacking the conversation of racism within Asian culture itself. He also leaves us with some great advice for other aspiring Asian athletes. 

“If you want to have that satisfaction from achieving something so big… You need to go through how bad that feels in order for you to achieve how good that feels. And if you're not ready for that, don't do it…that's the price you're paying.”


00:00 - Intro

02:00 - Phillip’s Commonwealth Game Experience

14:27 - An Insight into Phillip’s Upbringing 

17:43 - Phillip’s Source of Drive & Motivation

19:17 - Phillip’s Piano Class Story

22:05 - The Idea of Never Being Satisfied

25:51 - The Asian-Australian Athlete Experience

28:32 - Why Aren’t There More Asian-Australian Athletes?

32:58 - The Importance of Asian Representation

35:02 - Confidence ≠ Arrogance 

40:32 - Are Asians the Most Judgemental Culture?

42:48 - Asian Parental Praise

47:06 - Phillip’s Identity as a Second Generation Asian-Australian

48:44 - Culture Shock from Asian High School to University

53:19 - Phillip’s Perspective on Racial Bias

58:35 - Racism within Asian Culture

59:51 - Phillip’s Advice for Aspiring Asian Athletes

01:02:31 - Outro


Phillip’s Instagram:

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Phillip’s Book:

M3 Initiative:

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