Going to maximum is a skill, and the only way to get good at it is through practice. You have to challenge and break your weightlifting PR’s again and again and again. This is a mental challenge as well as a physical one, and requires both mental and physical toughness.

Snatching 101kg for a new PR is physically similar to snatching 100kg to tie your PR. But mentally it is a whole different ball game. Breaking into uncharted territory and lifting something you have never lifted before requires a little more commitment. It requires you to fight and win a battle within your own mind. Anyone who has ever had problems committing to a snatch knows exactly what I am talking about. But with practice, you can get better and better at winning this mental battle.

Glenn Pendlay: Olympic Lifting Techniques—Hand Position for the Snatch

This is one of the reasons why I advocate keeping track of your PR’s from the hip, and from the knee as well as from the floor. I also keep track of doubles from these positions and other combinations such as 1 snatch from the hip + 1 from the knee or one from the knee + 1 from the floor.

Keeping track of a variety of PR’s and constantly challenging them insures that you are training at maximal intensity, getting enough variety so you don’t get stale, AND constantly practicing the mental skill of breaking into uncharted territory. As you get physicaly stronger, you will also be getting mentally stronger!

Any lifter who competes long enough is eventually in the situation of having to make a new PR to win a competition, qualify for a national meet, or to beat a rival. Who do you think is more likely to make the lift when it matters? Someone who challenges PR’s in training on a consistent basis, or someone who doesn’t?

We’re delighted to announce that our next workshop will be a Weightlifting Masterclass with USA Coach, Glenn Pendlay, on Saturday, July 28th in Thurles. Covering specific warm-ups, weightlifting for sports performance, conditioning for high repetition lifting andcoaching of the main Olympic lifts,you can find full details about the event here: https://www.setantacollege.com/pendlay-weightlifting-masterclass/.