Every year in Dallas, Megan and I have made a tradition out of driving around Highland Park and looking at all the houses with Christmas lights. We just walked in from that adventure and we learned a couple things about ourselves. Megan loves simplicity. I love complexity. Megan loves traditional houses with traditional, non-colored Christmas lights. I love houses that stand out both because of their architectural design and the crazy amount of lights and colors. This is probably the reason the outside of our house has no decorations.
My favorite house by far was the one pictured above. No lights just a ton of Santa figurines. (we counted at least 50) Add to the madness some random flying pig and a giant Clark Griswold head and you have my perfect Christmas home. This particular taste for Christmas lights gives great insight into my personality. I love complexity, extravagancy, and anything that is typically over the top. Most of the time this is to my downfall.
However, in the weightlifting world, an affinity for complexity and specificity also means a desire for perfection. Today, Chance and I got to chat and look at his videos from this past weekend. While I was able to point out some faults in his lifts, (early arm bend, slow third pull, etc) overall his lifts were very clean and well performed for a 16 yr old kid who just started 4 months ago. He wasn’t satisfied. His response to my complimentary remarks is memorable and a great picture of his heart.
He says to me, “All of this technical error – breaking of the arms, receiving the bar too high… we can get this fixed, right?”
I responded, “Yep… you’re young and only 4 months into this… you expect to be perfect?”
Chance’s response, “I want it”
The Snatch and Clean and Jerk are complex movements requiring great focus and lots of hours of practice. Perfecting the movements, while tedious, pays off in efficiency and amount of weight lifted. The idea that just getting the bar from the ground to over your head is sufficient, ruins the lift and takes away their incredible complexity. Chance gets that. Good lifters get that. Simply completing the movement with little care for technique is a habit bound for plateaus, frustration, and silver medals (at best). Perfection. You have to want it.
Here are the links to Chance’s videos that I promised: (note the early arm bend on the snatch)
98kg – yes this should have been a red light