Last weekend The Attitude Nation hosted its first Level II Camp. I was a part of what I would call a “Dream Team”. Weightlifting was taught by International and National level lifters Jon North, Jessica North, and Donnie Shankle. The Powerlifting portion was taught by me, but I was assisted by World Record Holder Greg Nuckols and National level Weightlifter Rebecca Gerdon. The gymnastics section was conducted by the one and only Ryan Grady, and Crossfit Coach Ben Taylor. We all had a complete blast, but for me the true words of wisdom were spoken behind the scenes by “The Lion Killer” Donnie Shankle. Today I want to tell you guys what it takes to be a World Champion in the sport of weightlifting. There are four quadrants, and these quadrants were taught by World Famous Bulgarian Coach Ivan Abadjiev. The quadrants are as follows: maximums, minimums, attitude, and group training environment. I will explain each.
Maximums are the high numbers that you hit in training when you are feeling perfect. For example if you snatch 150k weekly, but once a month or once every six weeks you hit 155 or 160, then your maximum is 155 to 160. This is the number that you are capable of if on meet day, all cylinders are firing. Your goal is to prepare the body for this big number or slightly higher by tapering properly for the meet.
Minimums are the slightly more important than maximums because these are the numbers that you hit consistently. Minimums should be tracked on a monthly basis, and your goal should be to increase those minimums over time. These numbers are what one uses in picking an opener for a meet. Minimums tell the lifter and their coach what the worse possible scenario for a meet really is. Lifters should be more concerned with raising the minimum than increasing their maximum.
Attitude in my opinion is the most important part of the four because a lifter must have a fearless attitude to one day pull themselves under world record weights. I’ve witnessed athletes that were mobile, fast, and strong, but because they doubted themselves, they were never able to succeed in weightlifting. I believe that this quadrant carries over to all sports. If an athlete isn’t fearless, courageous, and tenacious, then they will never reach full potential. That’s why as parents we should encourage these traits in our children, so that one day in sport and in life our children can be successful to their full potential.
The last quadrant is a must for athletes to succeed, and that is group training. What I mean by group training is a group of likeminded athletes training in the same place. This is the key for athletes to push themselves to the maximums and minimums that they are capable of. In my experience this is more important than food, supplements, recovery, or rest. If competitive athletes are put in the same training hall, they will push each other to world record lifts. True athletes are competitive in nature, and they need other athletes to bring that out.
These are just a few nuggets that I took away from the Shankle. I will be in New Jersey at the Underground Gym August 2nd and in Atlanta at Crossfit 140 August 24th teaching people the Olympic lifts. I look forward to passing on the knowledge that I have acquired over the last twenty years, and that I am still acquiring by working with people like Jon North and Donnie Shankle. I promise that it will be a great time of Bar Slamming and Knowledge Dropping! To Sign Up go to www.MashElitePerformance.com in the “Store” Section!