HONOLULU (KHNL) -- Live healthy and drug free -- that was the message to dozens of Hawaii high school students in an annual competition. But it wasn't the only one.
Some of Hawaii's strongest high schoolers flex their muscles in the 6th annual bench press and body building competition. But this is about more than just pushing weight.
"This is just a vehicle for kids to get involved in," said Daniel Suzuki, the event's organizer. "Instead of hanging out in shopping centers, game rooms, they can hang out at the weight room, and develop a sense of pride and self esteem in themselves."
No matter who you are.
Kailua High's Anuhea Texeira is a weight lifter, but she's also a beauty pageant contestant.
"They actually kinda look," said Texeira, about boys when she walks into the weight room. "I put quarters on and they're already laughing. I seen couple guys laughing. And after I benched it, they actually came up to me and was like, wow, really impressive. So made me feel good."
King Kekaulike's Luna Emelio is a man among boys -- with the perfect physique to push bulldozers. But he wears a prosthesis on his leg. That hasn't stopped him from working out or playing football.
"At first, it was hard for me," said Emelio. "Had to train train and train, everyday, off season, during the summer, and it got to a point where it's just easier for me."
"Proves that you can do anything if you put your mind to it," he said.
And even though trophies are handed out, that's not what this competition is about.
"To become a better person," said Texeira. "I'm not here for the trophy. I'm here for the experience, to make new friends, and to have fun."
About 40 students from across the state participated in the bench press and body building competitions. Luna did win his weight division.
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