Saturday, May 30, 2009

Score: High Fructose Corn Syrup: 1, Me: 0

Saturday May 30, 2009

Last night at around 2am in the morning I woke up with pain in both shoulders, right knee, and both elbows. I eventually fell back asleep and woke up around 6am again with the same pains. Again I as able to get back to sleep. Both times when waking up in pain I was aghast as to what was going on .. I also thought, "Oh boy, there goes today's Olympic lifting session at the club." When I finally got up at 8am, all the pain was gone except for my right shoulder which has bothering me now for a few weeks. But even this was only mild compared to earlier in the morning. Then it finally dawned on me as to what the heck happened.

The previous evening I met up with eight friends at local watering hole for a reunion .. we all spend long hours working and bonding together at the same startup company almost eight years ago. We ordered beer, wine and three large orders of nachos with the works .. I gorged myself and consumed an entire platter myself with all the sour cream and cheese, olives etc.

This stuff is just plain no dang good. The massive dose of high fructose corn syrup reeked havoc on my joints inducing the painful episodes I experienced last night. I have been eating fairly clean for the last couple of years and this jolt of garbage was just too much on my system. I hope I remember this incident so that at the next reunion I opt to order a piece of grilled chicken with steamed veggies instead.

Early afternoon Olympic lifting session:

Z-Health Neural Warmup Level II Dynamic Joint Mobility

Snatch (kg):
20 x 3 x 5 hang-snatch, snatch-balance
40 x 3 x 3 hang-snatch
40 x 1 x 4 hang-snatch + 3 snatch-balance
45 x 1 x 3 hang-snatch +2 snatch
50 x 2 x 2 hang-snatch, snatch
55 x 2 x 2 snatch
57 x 2 x 2 snatch , 1 miss (85%)
60 x 2 x 1 snatch (90%)

Front Squat (kg):
60 x 1 x 5
70 x 1 x 3
80 x 1 x 3
90 x 2 x 2
95 x 1 x 2
100 x 1 x 2
100 x 1 x 1 miss
100 x 1 x 2
105 x 1 x 1

We had a large lifting crew today and the coaches were busy with assisting other lifters. As a result, I asked my unofficial training partner, Jason Edmonds, to critique my hang-snatch and he obliged.

Jason and I started at the same time back last October and both of us are progressing very slowly but steadily with our snatch form. Although both of us have a long way to go towards producing a consistent powerful, fast squat snatch, we both are developing an eye to for what it should look like and want to avoid.

As a result, Jason provided extremely good feedback. Specifically when in the hang position, my knees were bent as opposed to being vertical. As a result, my hamstrings and gluts were not loaded before jumping. Consequently, when I jumped my knees extended first and pushed off my toes with almost no power. Since the weight was relatively light I still completed the full squat snatch but there was no power. On the other hand, when snatching from the floor, my knees extended vertically before pulling and the lift was much smoother. Another very useful comment was to try and remain on my feet without a big stomp when repositioning my feet when receiveing the bar in the squat stance.

I went a little heavier than lately to see if I could maintain good form. Although I made 3 out of 4 with 57kg and both singles with 60kg, my arms were not loose. According to Coach Fuller the arms should react to the bar movement and not constrain it, hence the cue "loose arms!". The arms should only be used when pulling oneself under the bar AFTER fully extending. Recently, I took note of a youtube Tommy Kono videos, where he explains that the arms should bend when extending to allow the bar to continue to rise vertically .. there should be no straight arm looping motion to swing the bar overhead. This is a toughy for me .. vigilance is required.

I went heavy on my front squats and was able to perform two sets of doubles with 100kg, a PR of sorts. I restarted my second set after badly missing the first rep when I tried to rush it .. I got stuck in the hole with no elasticity and has to ditch the bar. Coach Fuller correctly got on case and had me slow down and get set for each rep .. my second set of doubles was better than my first. I ended with a very very tough single with 105kg .. it seemed to take forever to grind back up to vertical position. One the new areas Coach Fuller wants me to work on is to lower the bar under control on the way down and explode on the way up. If done correclty this will help my clean recovery and leave me with more energy to jerk a heavy weight.

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