Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The New Year

This is it, the New Year is upon us! I don't know about you, but 2012 is going to bring BIG things for myself. I get excited every December for what the new year is going to bring and this year is no different. The growth that CrossFit Central has experienced this past year and all the hard work and leadership training we have been doing is a about to pay off in 2012.

One thing I love about my gym is it gives us the opportunity to be individuals and express ourselves however we want. We can branch out and brand ourselves as we see fit and create our own little subculture within the CrossFit Central community. I've been working harder than I ever have before to forge my own brand and it is starting to pay off.
I am very excited for 2012 and all the opportunities that are going to come my way to help our gym grow and my own personal brad grow as well. I want you to get excited as well! If you notice the pic below, read it, and think about what it means. WE are our only road block. Not just you telling yourself you can't do something but other people planting that seed in your head as well.
Impossible is just an Opinion. You have the choice on weather or not you choose to accept it.
In 2012 what are you going to do?
In 2012 I am making moves, growing my personal brand and forging Crossfit Central into the stratosphere!
What are you going to do? Let other people shape your opinion about yourself or forge your own way?
Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Fantastic Exercise

Wanted to share a great exercise that I do, snatch grip shoulder press. It is a fantastic way to strengthen the shoulders and help with the lock-out of the snatch. I actually did this exercise yesterday and just happen to see it this morning on California Strength. While your at it you should also go and check out their YouTube channel for great exercises and sic training sessions. Thought I would post it so that you could given it a try and add it to your training regimen.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Video Evidence

Wanted to share video from the Olympic lifting meet at Woodward Crossfit put on by OK Weightlifting several weeks ago. In the video is a little kid I wanted to put on there because it's just cool. I love seeing little people getting into the sport because you just don't see that many and it's a sign the sport is growing. (Thanks CrossFit) On the video also is the one and only Emily Baker competing in in her first meet.
On my lifts the weight is as follows (side note, since the meet was not sanctioned we were given a fourth attempt) Snatch: 1st 90kilos 2nd 95kilos 3rd 98kilos 4th 100kilos missed
Clean & Jerk: 1st 113kilos 2nd 120kilos 3rd 125kilos missed 4th 125 missed
These small meets are exactly what I need to build my confidence and help prepare me for larger sanctioned meets. I encourage you all to leave a comment and tell me what you think.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Confidence Builds

This past weekend I competed in my third Olympic weightlifting meet at Woodward CrossFit. I didn't set any PR's, but my confidence is growing. Enough so that in January I will be competing in the Texas State Championship meet in Alvin, Texas. It will be my second sanctioned meet and worlds different than my first one.

When I competed in my first sanctioned meet this past January I choked....bad. I have dedicated myself to the Olympic lifts and training for them only for almost a year. With some coaching by Olympian Chad Vaughn, I had finally built up enough confidence in my lifts to start competing. I had one other meet early on in the summer and did fairly well, no PR's but hit all my lifts. So, I got my USAW card and signed up for a meet at 210 CrossFit in San Antonio. I picked an opening weight that I had regularly hit while training and went for it. And then I scratched on all three attempts at 85 kilos. Not my brightest moment in the world of Olympic weightlifting.

After my poor showing I decided I need a full time coach and looked to Ursula Garza for guidance. She was gracious enough to accept me into her tight nit training group, and so my training began. If your not familiar with Ursula she is a stud! A former lifter herself, trainer for the CrossFit Olympic lifting certs. and a former U.S.A. record holder in the clean and jerk. Stud! She pretty much started me over with HEAVY focus on the snatch. Since it is the most technical of the two lifts it only makes sense that we spent the most time on the snatch. We drill, drill, and drill and then do hang snatch. Lot's of hard work. BUT! it is starting to pay off. When I first started training with Ursula I could only snatch 90kilos, and clan and jerk 120kilos. Just two weeks ago while training at Central I snatched 102kilos and cleaned and jerked 125kilos. Like I said, paying off!

At the meet this past weekend I snatched 98kilos with no straps and just missed 100. I cleaned and jerked 120kilos with ease and just missed 125. Not PR's but consistently making my attempts and getting stronger. Which leads me to going to the state meet in January where I will go for new PR's in the snatch and clean and jerk.
Seeing the progress I'm making and recognizing all the hard work I have been putting in is only feeding the fire inside. All of the workouts and sacrificing my free nights with my family to go get coached is not going to be for nothing. I have big goals for myself and am visualizing myself getting there. I have video of the lifts from this past weekends meet and should have it up next week for all to view. Happy lifting!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Squat Low Squat Heavy Squat Often

As many of you know Olympic Lifting requires copious amounts of squatting. Whether it be front squats, back squats, or over head squats it happens a lot in training. Cindy was kind enough to share with everyone how it's helped her.

Most Crossfitters know that a squat isn't a squat unless your butt gets down below parallel. But, in my Olympic Lifting class, that's not low enough.
Your butt should be practically on the ground -- I'm talking "thighs to calves" low.
Before I started Zach's Olympic Lifting class, I had never squatted so low or so much in my life, and certainly not with a heavy bar.
Every class includes either front squats or back squats, and the rest of the lifts usually involve overhead squats or cleans. The weights are heavy, and the percentages and rep schemes are similar from week to week, gradually progressing upward over time.
That's after a warmup of duck walks, squat hops, and jumping squats -- which feels like a workout by itself!
See what I mean about squatting?
When I started the class in October, I thought I was going to die in the warmup. My legs burned. I had to stop frequently. I didn't know how I was going to make it to the actual lifting part of class.
During lifts, Zach often had to remind me to squat lower. "Find the bottom," he said. It was scary to go down so low holding such a heavy bar since I wasn't used to it.
Well, things have changed a lot over the past 2 ½ months. The emphasis on squatting has made a difference for me.
1. Over time, the warm up got easier. No more dreading the squat hops and duck walks!
2. My squat is lower. My husband was amazed when he saw me squat down to pick up my daughter -- my butt was practically on the ground -- and lift her 20 pound body up like it was nothing. (Yes! Squatting is functional!)
3. To top it all off, I've finally started making gains in the gym again. After just 2 ½ months, I've added 15 pounds to my front squat max (130 pounds) and finally reached 150 pounds on my back squat max -- I’ve been trying for that weight for almost 2 years!
I now understand. The simple fact of the matter is that if you want to be a stronger squatter (or stronger anything for that matter), you actually have to work at it.
It’s important to practice lifting heavy weights frequently in order to make progress and build strength.
But it’s also important because it affects the rest of my life. Lifting up my kids without straining my back is so awesome! I don’t feel old or weak. I feel young and strong.
I wonder, will I be able to pick them up when they’re older and heavier? I bet I could!

I think it goes to show that squatting for what ever sport you choose to do (being an Olympic Lifter, CrossFiter, mom or dad) can help you obviously become stronger and more confident.