Spent a lot of time working on cleans today and while I’m not going to try and tell anyone they’re good, they are getting better. One of those days where things are finally starting to click on that exercise.

Position 1: 1-1-1-1
Position 2: 1-1-1
Full: 1-1-1

Coach Stew lead the WOD today and we warmed up with a crossfit “game” that was new to me, the “circle of pain”. There were three people and two kettlebells in each group. I was teamed with Paul P. (aka: Coach Paul, no pressure there, right?) and Meaghan. We had two kettle bells among our group, a 35 and 52lb. At the signal go, one person does 10 deadhang pulls the 35, one person does 10
deadhang pulls with the 52, the third person runs in place. Every 10 reps, you rotate one position. Person who was using the 35 moves to the 52. Person on the 52 runs in place. Person running moves to the 35. Repeat this cycle for 5 minutes.

After that it was on to the cleans. I did 3 reps of 45 and 75lbs just to practice form a bit. LIfts from position 1 were done at 95, 105, 115 and 125. Those all felt ok. Coach Stew pointed out early on that I wasn’t keeping the bar close enough to my body and pulling it straight up. After my hip drive, I continue to push the bar away, then lift, then pull it back. As he pointed out, not only is that a LOT of wasted energy, but that also means eventually the momentum of the bar is flying at me and screwing up my balance as it tries to knock me backwards! Suddenly, pulling straight up became a lot more important.

Position 2: or at least starting lifts from position 2 is just awkward to me. I did 2 lifts of 115 each. They were ok. I moved up to 125 and failed. I decided to go on to full cleans.

From the floor I did lifts of 115, and two at 135. Those felt much better. Somewhere during the set from position 2 Coach Stew pointed out that my hands and arms are much too slow getting under the bar. Realistically, all of my lift is much too slow.

It’s at a point, where I’m overthinking the whole process. From the time I squat down and grip the bar, I’m counting off all of the steps in my head, and I’m mulling them over and analyzing them as I move through the lift. To certain degree with this lift, I need to just grip it and rip it.

I needlots more reps to develop muscle memory for the correct form, but I really need to stop worrying about it so much.

5 power cleans (RX-155)
10 Burpees
AMRAP 8:00 Min.

I worked the power cleans at 115. That was a challenging weight for me. I got through 4 full rounds, a 5th round of cleans and 2 burpees. Coach Stew pointed out after the WOD that he observed some of my reps during the METCON and said my hand speed was much better in the first two rounds.

We both acknowledged that fatigue got the better of me after that and my form was not as strong. I’ll tell you what. I was SPENT when time was called. In fact, we all were. EVERYONE was flat on the floor gasping for air after this one, so at least I was in good company.