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'American Ninja Warrior' first mother heads to finals

Sandy Zimmerman, a 42-year-old mother of three, finished 13th. Twelve contestants went to Vegas.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Sandy Zimmerman, a 42-year-old mother of three, made history on “American Ninja Warrior” in June. Unfortunately, she was not able to advance to Las Vegas out of the Tacoma city finals.

Zimmerman competed in the show's Seattle/Tacoma City Finals episode on Monday night. She completed 7 of the 10 obstacles during her run.

Zimmerman held onto the 12th and final spot until American Ninja Warrior veteran Jessie Graff passed Zimmerman's time and went farther on the course in the final run of the episode. She missed a spot in the finals by only one point. 

Zimmerman told KREM after the episode that her new goal is to make the show finals. 

"These abs need to go to Vegas," she said on the episode after her run. 

"A highlight was getting to be the first mom to hit the buzzer and then making it to city finals, but my dreams are not going to stop there," Zimmerman told KREM during a watch party on Monday night. "I've still got some really big dreams and I'm hoping to use this platform to really make a difference in other people's lives."

Watch Zimmerman's full run

The show follows competitors as they tackle challenging obstacle courses in city qualifying and final rounds across the country. Those who successfully complete the finals course in their region move on to the national finals in Las Vegas, where they face a course with up to 32 obstacles.

The competitor who completes all four stages takes home a grand prize of $1 million.

Zimmerman competed in the Seattle/Tacoma City Qualifiers, which aired in June. During her run through the course, she tackled obstacles like the Barrel Roll, the Broken Bridge, the Lightning Bolts and the Warped Wall – and she was the first mom to ever complete the course.

Zimmerman had competed on the show twice before but had never made it past the second obstacle until this year.

She is no stranger to athletics, with a judo championship under her belt and a run on Gonzaga University’s women’s basketball team.

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KREM Sports Director Brenna Greene sat down with Zimmerman in June, where she shared more about her emotional journey toward the competition.

She said she is sharing her victory with every mother.

"This is a we. We did this together. As a mother, you're constantly putting your own needs and wants on the back burner, and just to get to go out there and dream a big dream because we as moms can still dream big dreams," she said.

"Take a chance and get out there," she added.

Watch Greene's full interview with Zimmerman

The TV show shared a leaked clip of Zimmerman’s city finals run, writing that she “isn’t slowing down anytime soon.” In the clip, she defeats the first part of the course – including the Warped Wall – and moves into the difficult back portion.

Zimmerman will face the competition’s Salmon Ladder for the first time during Monday night’s episode, which is shown in the video. The video does not indicate whether Zimmerman completes the course and moves on to the National Finals.