Today was a Barbell Club day. Once a week I leave the porch gym and train with a local weightlifting club, so I can be coached. I hit 3 personal records! My snatch max went from 68 lbs to 83 lbs. My clean and jerk went from 99 lbs to 105 lbs. And my prior 1 rep max in the back squat (170lbs) is now my 3 rep max! I feel very proud of my progress.
One of my coaches filmed me in these attempts. Looking at them later, I realize that once my speed in pulling under the bar improves, I should be able to lift a lot more. My strength is there; my speed is still coming.
As far as training frequency, I’m very glad I dropped back to 3 times per week. I had been attempting to follow a training program was 4-5 times per week, but decided to drop back to 3 after reading a book by Matt Foreman about Olympic Weightlifting for Masters. The gist of it can be found in this article. Basically, older people (and in weightlifting, even being in your late 20s or early 30s is staring to get “old.” After 35 years old, you are in the masters level for competition) usually cannot handle 5 training days per week, simply because their bodies don’t recover as quickly. Strength gains are made in recovery, and if you train more than you can recover, you set yourself up for overtraining and injury. I was feeling pretty sore or tired a lot, so I dropped back to 3 days per week.
It was a good decision! This last week was a heavy week in my training cycle, and I still felt like I had the physical and mental energy and focus to handle my other responsibilities. And today was the “heavy single” day in the cycle, and I felt physically well recovered going into it.
I also felt good today because my coaches told me I have “outstanding dedication.” I really appreciated the acknowledgement, because as a fat person, I am well aware that some people make assumptions that people my size are lazy and lacking dedication. So it felt great to be seen for what I can DO, not how I LOOK.
All in all an excellent training day! I’m writing this post with my feet up after a meal, a shower, and a nap, and I’m feeling very satisfied.