Last year I discovered weightlifting and my life will never be the same again.
I’ve “lifted weights” before, sure. I’ve done the whole back and bis, chest and tris, bodybuilding style split you see so many following blindly at your local Globogym. But I’m talking about squatting, dead lifting, cleaning and pressing. And the snatch and clean & jerk are in my not too distant future.
These movements are a whole new world to me.
I got into CrossFit with the rather ambiguous goal of “getting fit”. I learned very quickly that crushing a MetCon just doesn’t interest me. I just want to lift really heavy things. Now that goal of getting fit has become “Get strong. And then get stronger”.
With the guidance of a great coach, I’m lifting more and more weight each week. The PRs are coming thick and fast as the mechanics of each movement become smoother, more natural.
Eventually the frequency will taper as efficiency of movement is maximised and my body’s ability to recover from throwing around maximal loads slows. But I’ll continue to chase that 1RM dragon for a long while yet.
My mobility is at levels I’ve never thought possible, and still improving. Before I started lifting, I never realised that the way my body moved was so poor. I grunted just picking things up off the floor.
From barely being able to bend over a few months ago, I can now sit in an ass to the grass squat without any of the hip or knee pain from my rugby days. I move better now than I did when I was half my age.
I’ve also found peace under the barbell. No matter how fucked the day has been, crushing a front squat or dead lift has become my meditation. I never walk away feeling worse than when I walked in.
OK, sure, maybe I’m tired and a bit beat up if it’s a “heavy” day, but mentally I’m a clean slate. Sunshine and fucking rainbows. The shit just vanishes.
Although I have heard that the heavier the weights get, the noisier lifting becomes. Not from the grunting of the lifter, but rather the internal roar as the blood pressure spikes through the movements.
Strength is my new addiction. I want more. I want to feel like if I had to flip a car off someone, I could do it, as silly as that may sound.
Beyond the barbell, I’ve had a taste of some movements used in Strongman competitions and I fucking love them. The Atlas Stones in particular. There is something raw and primal about picking up a fucking heavy stone. There are no hand holds. Nothing to grip onto other than the great mass of the stone itself.
I’ll need to have a chat to the box owners about getting some larger stones as I’ve only got their heaviest stone left to master. And maybe some Farmer’s Carry handles while they’re at it.
I’m a late starter to strength and it’s early days, but it’s been a fucking great ride so far.
And if I ever get strong enough to flip that car, I just hope the owner is insured and someone has their camera out.