Deadlift + Explosivity + Squat

3 Aug

Sometimes the “vicious, ambitious, and a little bit malicious” part of me wonders WHY the heck I’m not squat cleaning 95 lbs already.  And then I have to remind myself that I just started working with barbells 5.5 months ago… that and the fact that explosive, dynamic barbell lifts still scare me.  Yes, I’m always so nervous when it comes to Clean & Jerks or Snatches.  Sure, yeah, let me just PULL these HEAVY (well, heavy for me) weights up over my little head.  WHY would I want to do that??!  (So, I guess I’m not as “vicious, ambitious, and a little bit malicious” as I thought!)

Needless to say, I’ve been working on my technique little by little and have been taking my sweet time moving up in weight.  This is the SAFE way!  (This is what I tell myself to get some sleep at night.)  :oP  The good news is that last week, my previously “omg, this weight is too heavy to be pulling and jumping up off the ground” 65# seemed almost too easy.  Almost.  So, on the next Squat Clean WOD I’m movin’ on up to 70#.  Hey-O.

Speaking of “hey” and “o” – have you ever taken a picture of your face during the hip drive and shoulder shrug portion of a Clean & Jerk?  Forget the “O-Face” it’s all about your “Clean & Jerk Face.”  Good grief.  I need to work on my facial expressions more than anything else during the lift.  Squat Cleans scare me??!  Please, I scare myself!  Wowza.  Thankfully for anyone reading, I’ve taken the liberty of cutting my face out of some pictures.  Sooo funny!

Here are some sequence shots with my “cues” that I use to talk myself through the lift.  The “explosive downward pull” is still the hardest part for me.  It’s difficult pulling myself down and under a weighted bar… it’s like a race against Gravity!  I also need to work on better receiving the bar in a full squat position… and I would like to see my elbows up a little more.  Practice, practice, practice, I guess.

Oh, and I’ve always wondered why this lift was called a “Clean.”  Well… thanks to Wikipedia, I now know that the original lift during the 20th century was called a “Continental.”  It involved slowing flipping the bar up the torso until the bar was high enough to Jerk it overhead.  The Continental was thought to be “clumsy, slow, and nonathletic.”  Eventually, a swift lift of the bar from head to above torso was adopted and this was known as a “cleaner” lift.  Hence the Clean.  Ta-daaaa!  I get it now, I get it!


4 Responses to “Deadlift + Explosivity + Squat”

  1. Jen August 3, 2010 at 15:36 #

    This is helpful stuff! Keep it coming! You have a very relaxed and peaceful face in your squat clean! 🙂 NICE SQUAT too (not to be confused with twat).

    • jessicamacho August 5, 2010 at 08:55 #

      Thanks, Jen! Will do. Squat… Twat… it rhymes so I can see a possible confusion here. 🙂 I only have a “relaxed and peaceful face” at the bottom of the squat clean because, well, the weight wasn’t THAT heavy. Throw on a couple more bumper plates and I’m sure my face will be lookin’ fine, oh so fine.

  2. JD Ravenhurst August 5, 2010 at 06:13 #

    Great work Jess. Maybe mix up your training a bit and throw some ‘power cleans’ into the rotation. Don’t think about your ‘lifting’ face too much, I’m sure we all have funny expressions when we are trying to lift something heavy off the floor!

    Keep working hard!

    • jessicamacho August 5, 2010 at 08:59 #

      Thanks, JD! Yes, I do mix up my training. I stick to Mainsite CF’ss WODs but feel like my Oly lifts are my ultimate weakness so sometimes I concentrate more effort into those. But, you are right to suggest Power Cleans. It’s a necessary progression into Squat Clean, in my opinion.

      Thanks for reading!

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