Today was another fantastic day at MDUSA, and I continue to learn so much! Hanging out with Don and Glenn is better than any college degree that I could think of. I wanted to share a few of the things that I learned today with all of you.
Don is probably the best technique coach in America, and everyday I learn a new cue or exercise to fix flaws. Today athlete Will Hall stopped in to slam bars, but actually ended up killing PRs. Early on during some of Will’s Snatches, Don noticed that Will was shifting his weight onto his toes too early causing him to have soft landings with the bar out in front slightly. Here are some of the correction tools:
1. Verbal cues of shift back may help the athlete fix the problem himself.
2. Or have the athlete hang their toes off the end of the platform, so that they have no choice but to have their weight shifted to the heel.
Then Don pointed out one of my junior athletes Hannah Black in a video of her jerking. He explained that she was accidentally shifting weight onto the toes during the drive portion of the jerk causing her to be out in front on the catch when she visited last week. He had worked with her shifting back more before initiating the dip phase, and mentally trying to stay through the heels as long as possible. The video he pointed out was her new PR of 86k, and he said that she was improving drastically. When Don compliments like that, it’s a big deal.
Here is a highlight clip from today’s training:
During Weightlifting Scoop today, we had several great discussions. There was one however that really intrigued me, and it was hearing Glenn Pendlay discuss all the aspects that goes into being a champion. Glenn told us that he had coached several athletes with the potential to be champions, but for one reason or another didn’t make it.
All athletes train, but it’s the ones that do the little things that become champions. The ones that sleep right, eat right, recover right, and make the right life decisions. Everyone wants to be great, but not many stop to think what it really takes. Another important aspect that most don’t talk about is the ability to last. Glenn said that it takes about 12 solid years of training for an athlete to realize their true potential. That’s a long time of training without a major injury, so athletes need to look at this thing as a marathon and not a sprint. Of course a lot of not getting hurt is genetics, but as athletes we need to do everything that we can to avoid injuries.
Jared explained that he started out with two dozen athletes that were as good or better than him we he was a youth lifter. Now there is only 2-3 of them left. Here are some keys to preventing injuries:
1. Smart choices! Don’t participate in high risk activities if your goal is to be an Olympian.
2. Recovery is key! A.R.T., Chiropractic, massage, contrast baths and more.
3. Address weaknesses! Right now Glenn is helping Jared strengthen his back.
4. Add mobility issues!
5. Proper nutrition!
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Later I was talking to Will about my new job at MDUSA. There are so many reasons that I love my job, but my true purpose is much more narrow. I want to help athletes reach their true potential. I want to help them shift their paradigms from making international teams to medaling. I want our team to never be beaten. Most importantly I want the athletes to have a purpose. If that purpose is only winning, then it will be a lonely place at the top. If they want to use their fame to better the lives of others, then joy in their lives will be of abundance.
I know this to be true because when I was a world champion, there was no joy in my life. Now that my life revolves around helping others and glorifying God, my life has never been better. I hope that my son and daughter will come to know the joy of helping others someday.
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