Monday, September 22, 2008

Thinking kilos

Growing up in the USA in my generation taught me that weight was measured in pounds. The metric system was something weird that people in other parts of the world used. As a kid, I would read the comic book ads about how Mac the 97 pound weakling became strong following the Dynamic Tension exercise methods of Charles Atlas. Mac the 44 kilo weakling wouldn’t have sounded right even though it’s the same weight.

But my entry into the Olympic weightlifting world has made me think kilos because that is how weight is expressed in that world. I’ve resisted and still think pounds but I’m doing a better job of thinking kilos. I now know that one kilo is 2.2046 pounds. I also know that if I want to compete in the 85 kilo weight class that I better not weigh more than 187.391 pounds.

So with that mindset I entered the Atlas Open, a small local meet on Saturday, September 20th; it was my second Olympic weightlifting competition, the first one being about 6 weeks earlier. I entered the 85 kilo weight class and weighed in that morning at 83.2 kilos (183.4 lbs.)

In the snatch, I opened with 61 kilos (134.5 lbs.) and made that lift. This was 1 kilo more than my first meet attempt. I made that first lift too. For my second attempt I asked for 64 kilos (141.1 lbs.) and missed. I tried again for my third attempt and missed again. So I was 1 for 3 in the snatch just like my first meet.

In the clean and jerk, I opened with 81 kilos (178.6 lbs.) and made that lift. This was also 1 kilo more than my first meet attempt. I made that first lift too. For my second attempt I asked for 84 kilos (185.1 lbs.) and made it. Then I asked for 86 kilos (189.6 lbs.) for my third attempt. I thought I had it but missed with the jerk. The weight fell behind me, something that has never happened before in training or competition. So I was 2 for 3 in the clean and jerk just like my my first meet.

Overall I was 3 for 6 with a total of 145 kilos (319.7 lbs). I was hoping to total 150 kilos but it wasn’t meant to be. I have something to shoot for next time. There is another meet in November that I want to enter. I’ll take one week off for rest and recovery, and then begin training for it.

Slowly but surely I’m improving in the Olympic lifts but it has been a slow journey and I have a long way to go. Not only in mastering the finer points of these very technical lifts, but also keeping my brain thinking kilos.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum


laurak said...

awesome work mr. P!! you will get the 330.693 next time :)

pierini said...

Thanks for stopping by m&m.

CliffA74 said...

If you measure yourself against Mr. Takeuchi, then you have another 30+ years to get it right.
Plenty of time!

pierini said...

Thanks for giving me that perspective Cliff, I really appreciate it.

I understand that Mr. Takeuchi, who is a cancer survivor, started his Oly lift journey at age 58.

I saw a photo of him completing a 100 kilo clean and jerk when he was "younger".