FUQUAY-VARINA, N.C. (WGHP) — Lilah Nathison hadn’t even started kindergarten yet when American Ninja Warrior debuted in 2009. Now, the North Carolina teenager is competing to be ANW’s next champion.
Nathison is from Fuquay-Varina, and, at only 15-years-old, she’s just barely old enough to compete as Season 14 begins on Monday, according to the News & Observer.
While many come to the competition with decades of experience, Nathison enters with less than two years of training behind her. She said she still has a photo of herself from Oct. 22, 2021, when she started her training at Rock Solid Warrior in Fuquay-Varina.
“One day I went and I tried out their competition team practice, and I didn’t do really good that day, because everyone was better than me,” Nathison told N&O. “So I got like really discouraged and I didn’t want to go back.”
But she did. And she got better.
“I just started learning really fast, and now I’m on the most elite level of the team,” Nathison told the paper. “Everything kind of just took off really fast.”
In fall 2021, during her first year of training, she applied to be on the show, and in March, she finally had her chance. American Ninja Warriors films the show ahead of time, so while we may not know how she did until the series airs, she’s only had good things to say about it.
“It was like the best, the most fun I’ve ever had,” she said.