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Monday, August 23, 2010

1st SKYPE w/ Donny, Snatch, CJ, FS 8-23-10

First skype meeting with Donny. It went real well. So today begins a new journey. I'm embarking upon the pain-train that is programming by Donny Shankle. He is going with primarily Olympic Lifting (obviously) with a dash of generalized strength training thrown in to keep me a bit more well rounded.

I chose to share this video today because I'm in for some hard work with Donny as my slave driver. Maybe you've seen it before. Watch it again. And redefine in your minds what it means to attack heavy weight over and over again. In case there is anyone actually reading this blog and you don't know who Donny Shankle is, he's the lifter in the first two frames of this video.

So .. I'm looking forward to attacking heavy weight!! Then getting under the bar and doing it again. And again!

Snatch - 30 2x2, 40 2x2, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65, 70k
C&J - 50 2x2, 70 2x2, 80, 85, 90, 95, 100k
Front Squat - 85, 93, 100 1 x 10
Back Ext - 2x10

I apologize for the funky sideways view. I recorded all of these with my new iphone and its the first time I've uploaded iphone video into imovie and this was the lovely result. Not sure how to remedy that because when I viewed them on my computer originally they were right side up. I'll look into it. If any of you would like to chime in, now is the time.


Donny wants me to improve my flexibility by sitting in the bottom of the squat position and shoving my knees outward while lifting my chest as high as possible and sinking my hips in as low as possible. He wants me to do this between every single rep of snatch and C&J. He also suggested I have a spotter help me by pushing down on my low back lightly and up on my chest in this position. I had Matt do this a few times and I did it about 60% of the time. Need to stay consistent and take the flexibility work more seriously.

Sn- Felt pretty good. Was able to eliminate the hop forward just by drawing the line on the platform and thinking about staying behind the line. I think this helped me stay off my toes a bit too. Was pretty happy with the Snatch today except for the last rep I didn't receive it at full depth and power snatched it instead. I think its going to take some time working through this issue as I'm now realizing that I've developed a bad habit of doing a power snatch a good majority of the time especially when it gets heavy. I've noticed this is a very common issue with crossfiters. Or maybe anyone who doesn't take the time to learn the lifts well. I'm not sure in the future if I should redo a lift that I complete but I'm not happy about because of an obvious technical flaw?

C&J - low back was getting fatigued. I was worried at 85 that 95 and 100 cleans and the front squats might be too much on my back. I soldiered on and the cleans ended up feeling fine. Overall the C&J's felt ok, not too heavy, though it didn't feel as though I had a lot of pop in me today.

Looking back at my notes I now realize there were a bunch of things I didn't work on that he mentioned. I did address a few of them, but will continue trying to address some of the other issues. Obviously some of these things will be ongoing and/or will take time to improve on.

FS - The front squats didn't make my low back feel any worse. Donny pointed out that my low back was probably fatigued on Sunday from Monday's deadlifting, and I believe this is still me feeling the effects of this. I'm hoping this doesn't rear its head later this week seeing how much work I have in front of me. I'll be foam rolling and icing it to be sure.

Back Ext - Felt a good pump from these and they are designed to aid in recovery as well as strengthening the spinal erectors. I'll slowly work up into using weight on this exercise.

Skype Sesssion with Donny - I thought it was a very useful meeting. We covered a bunch of issues that I can work on in the coming two weeks. We talked technique. Programming. Technique. Flexibility. And some more technique. He answered all the questions I currently had for him. Good stuff. I'm a happy client. It is however a bit frustrating to realize how much farther I have to improve on the lifts before I become proficient in them. Compared to most crossfitters or your average shmoe I'd say I've got very solid technique. Compared to Olympic Lifters however I'm a newbie. A rookie who has a long, long ways to go and some pretty ugly lifts. On the other hand this is encouraging in a way. As I continue to improve on my technique with the lifts, my numbers will just continue to climb. I'll become more efficient which is always good. And of course all this time I'll be building strength and power. So its encouraging to realize how much I have left in the tank. I'm nowhere near hitting a wall or plateauing or my genetic potential or anything like that. This makes me happy to know that a 300lb C&J is only a matter of time and one day, I'll look back on a 300lb C&J and laugh, because I've progressed much further past that! Onward and upward!

Program called for Push Press 5x4 but I took them out. I took them out because I benched yesterday and I'm feeling overall very smoked. My legs are done! I should have taken a rest day or two before starting this program. I fully realize that. But I'm going to give it a whirl anyways and see what happens. If I can eat enough to recover, get some good sleep and take out a lift here and there I think it should work. I do know however that the program Donny wrote for me is a truckload of work. More then I'm used to. Time to buck up and go to work!

Question - On the snatch, one cue that Donny gave me is that I should point my biceps towards the ceiling when receiving a snatch. I played around with that a little bit, but its not clicking yet. I'll work on it some more, but so far as simple as it sounds its not making sense. When I do that it seems to loosen my back up and pull my shoulder blades apart. Also puts the weight in a different spot in my hands and stresses the wrists differently. Need to explore this some more.


JTM said...

Hey Joe,
thanks for sharing this. I will be reading and trying to learn something along the way.


JAK said...

Glad you are enjoying it Joel. Hope you can learn something too.

Your distance coaching experience with Kempie was actually one of the factors for knowing how beneficial this has the potental to be for me. Whenever you are ready to hit an olympic lifting cycle I highly recommend you consider Donny's skype coaching approach.