It’s very easy to become completely consumed by how much weight is on the bar. Even me, although I’m not an ‘ego-lifter’, I still care about the amount of weight I am lifting. Although I don’t compare the weights I lift with the weights other people lift, I do compare the weight I am lifting to what I was lifting before. My big focus is actually what I am lifting now compared to what was I lifting last week, last month, last year… etc.
The problem is, lifting isn’t as simple as this! You can’t just go up and up in weight for every exercise, every workout, every single time. Here I provide some other strategies you can use to measure your performance and have peace of mind that you are improving, even if the weight isn’t necessarily going up. Continue reading
I thought this was a nice tip to give! Sometimes we go into the gym feeling demotivated, weak, and not really wanting to do our lifting. I have days like this. I have found that consciously making myself smile just before I begin my set of squats, makes me feel better, more confident and more energised.
Try it and see!
Here’s a list of what I consider to be ‘the essential’ things to have. I’ve noted a few ‘luxuries’ at the end!
Essential Olympic weightlifting equipment for home
You can’t just use any plates for Olympic weightlifting. Bumper plates are important because:
- They were made to be dropped, i.e. they can withstand the ‘abuse’ of regular drops from overhead height! Using other types of plate will cause damage to not only the plates, but also your barbell and the floor
- Most Bumper plates are the right diameter i.e. the 5kg, 10kg, 15kg, 20kg are all the same diameter as the 25kg plates. The diameter of the 25kg plate is the standard Olympic plate size and this diameter enables you to set up the bar at the right height. Other types of plate tend to all be different sizes (for example, even a 20kg plate will be smaller in diameter than a 25kg one). If you are just starting out you most likely won’t be starting with the 25kg plates, so Bumper plates let you set up at the right height whilst being able to use lighter plates
How to get better at Olympic weightlifting…
Accept the problem. “Yes body, we have a problem.”
Review how and why it is happening. “The video does not lie.”
Strategise to solve the problem. “Technique, technique, technique.”
Execute the corrective action. “The drills stay the same, we get better at them.”
Tracking the amount of weight you lift is an important way to monitor your progress over time. One way you can do this is to have a big whiteboard in your home-gym. If you don’t have the luxury of a home-gym, you could have a notebook instead.
On your whiteboard, you want to be writing in erasable marker pens. In your notebook, you want to be writing in pencil.
At the top of the board, have 3 columns titled the most common rep ranges you train. My columns say: 1RM, 3RM, 5RM.
Down the left hand side, have a long list of as many of the exercises you do as you can. My rows say: Back Squat, Front Squat, Clean, Snatch, Jerk, Clean & Jerk, Snatch High Pull, Clean High Pull, Snatch Balance, Power Jerk, Press, Hang Clean, Hang Snatch……….. and so on. I fill the board with as many exercises as can fit (I actually have three whiteboards in my home-gym!). Continue reading
Lots of people lead very busy lives. Even if you’re really dedicated to your gym regime, life outside the gym (family, work, extra-curricular activities, chores) can sometimes get in the way. A busy day can affect the workout in a number of ways. Here are two big reasons why and suggestions on how you can try to maintain good workouts even when life is busy. Continue reading