After lots and lots of Olympic lifting technique over the past few months, including a triple hang-snatches on Thursday, Sunday’s class set about determining the results of all that hard work with a 1RM snatch attempt.
After all the time we’ve put in as a group practicing the movement in various forms and rep schemes, it was time to fling some heavy weights overhead.
Prep Set #1: 1 x 5 Hang Snatch High Pull, 5 Hang Power Snatch, & 5 Heaving Snatch Balance (bar only)
Prep Set #2: 1 x 3 Snatch High Pull, 3 Power Snatch, & 3 Hang Squat Snatch (light weight)
Working Set: ~30min to find 1RM Snatch
Less than a month ago, when we all set about finding a 1RM clean, we talked about the mental aspect of heavy Olympic lifts in the following blog post:
In truth, the biggest obstacle to performing max effort Olympic lifts is overcoming the voice in your head telling you the weight is so heavy – so heavy it’s tough to pick up off the floor – that there’s no way you can get the weight onto your shoulders. We’ve all been there, we all have that voice. You’ve taught yourself how to lift – through multiple skill transfer exercises and clean-based complexes, you’ve ingrained the movement into your muscle-memory. The trick then becomes knowing, even telling yourself, that the weight’s going to be heavy in your hands as you start the lift, but to trust in the explosive power of your second pull to get the weight moving.
So while class on Sunday was a chance to find a max snatch, it was also a chance to conquer that little voice in your head – a physical PR that also requires a mental PR. However, once you’ve come to grips with the fact the weight is going to be heavy, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the lift is going to go as planned. So what do you do when you’ve missed a lift, whether it’s a snatch, clean, squat, or push press? A few months ago, Greg Everett of Catalyst Athletics wrote a nice little article about this very point entitled “When to Move on, and When to Punch Your Missed Lift in its Stupid Little Mouth.” Now, besides the fact that that’s an awesome title for an article, the following paragraph is particularly on point for our discussion:
The first consideration to make when trying to decide how to proceed after a missed lift is to determine if the miss was a mistake or failure. That is, did you make a technical error that you know how to correct, or did you physically fail to lift the weight? The two are completely different experiences, and they warrant different responses. If you miss a lift because you’re not strong enough to make it, the decision should be pretty obvious: stop. If you make a technical mistake and are confident you can correct it, generally it’s fine to repeat the set and make the correction. If you miss again, consider the possibility that you didn’t actually know what the problem is, or that it’s not entirely technical. If you’re tired, you have a considerable amount of work left in your training session, or your confidence in making the lift has dropped considerably, move on.
Of course, there are lots of other factors to consider such as sleep, nutrition, training load prior to the days lifting, etc., but the central take-away point is this: Heavy lifts not only require on-the-spot mental preparation, but a healthy dose of follow-up mental assessment. Think before the lift – think after the lift – just try not to think too much during the lift.
Instead of following the snatches up with heavy squats (as we did with the cleans back in September), class put the barbells away and arranged themselves into groups of 3 for the day’s conditioning.
Groups had 10 minutes to complete as many rounds as they could, with each person in a group starting at one of the 3 exercises. Groups could rotate only after everyone had completed all the reps for the movement. Of course, there were plenty of scaling options:
Thanks to everyone who came out for brunch, and especially to Erica & Steph for helping to organize. Not a bad way to close out our last regular week of classes. Yes, that said the last regular week of classes, at least at Balance. Remember, starting this week, Tom and Chris will no longer be teaching Tuesday and Thursday night classes; Balance has tapped Jeff Jenkins to fill in on those evenings. However, Tom and Chris will continue to coach Sunday classes, including the 9am Element and 10am regular class. Also, we’re putting together a CFDC Field Trip for Sunday, October 28th, as the gym will be closed due to a church function, so be sure to set aside some afternoon time in addition to your CrossFit filled morning!