Meanwhile in Czech Republic …
Here is a cool video of 28 year old Jirka Orsag’s worlds preparation.
In this session he snatched up to 190kg, clean and jerked 240kg and squatted 340kg (PR)!
Update: Read the translation below. Thanks to Ivan for the work!
We will be recording really heavy training after some while. Plan is to go to max in everything, but it will probably not be a true max, since I am quite tired after last few weeks. But we will see, I might hype myself. Already starting to sweat nicely, warming up. I will stretch my arms and will start with the snatch.
Initially I wanted to snatch without straps (just hook grip). Unfortunately I tore callus on my hand on monday, and since I have a meet in 2 weeks I do not want to make it worse, I want it to heal. I will snatch with straps, but clean and jerk without them since I cannot clean with straps, probably would break my elbows if I tried. I hope cleans won’t do too much damage to the hand and it will heal until competition. At the end we will do heavy squats, so I think there will be plenty to watch today.
Interviewer: Jirka, you prepared a heavy training for us today, we are already at the end, are you satisfied?
Jirka: This was a true max out training, first in quite a while. Let’s say it was a max out, although especially in the clean and jerk there probably still was some room. Overall I am happy with it. Especially happy with the fact that I was able to snatch 190kg, although it was after few attempts. Today was a great example of how to recognize whether you are simply not physically capable or you feel there and just some minor issues that keep you from making it.
Today I felt I was physically ready and strong enough. In general I am strongest I ever was these days, and given the time that’s still ahead I am confident it will only get better.
The snatch lately really sucked, I gained some bodyweight, and the heaviest I was able to snatch was 175kg, which is straight up sad. Today after snatching 170kg I missed all the following attempts, but felt it is not an issue of strength. Then I snatched 190kg on the 3rd attempt, with quite a good form.
But still, I know I could have done it on 1st attempt, I know I need to work on that, not missing attempts. I gained some weight and it made me slower in the snatch. I have been telling this for years, every time I gain weight I get slower. However, this time I took the risk and with the time left for preparation I believe I can get in terms with it.
It is in me strength wise, clean and jerk showed it really. For the first time since 2012 I was able to clean and jerk 240kg in training. It was a nice attempt, there are still some reserves, but I did not want to push it for the sake of ugly, technically bad attempts.
And I squated a new PR too, 340, finally. I want to squat 350 till the end of year.
Interviewer: Back to the snatch. You missed 180, 185, 190 twice. What were your thoughts before the 3rd 190?
Jirka: I knew it is just a technical issue. I was leaning too much on toes, I feel like I still lack some stability in the snatch, and need to work on finishing the pull too. In the 3rd attempt it all came together. It bothers me I missed a few attempts, but hopefully I broke some barrier today. Because I was really not too confident in the snatch in the last weeks. But I hope it will only be better now and this weight will become regular for me. At worlds I simply will need to snatch this.
Interviewer: Clean and jerk was simply impressive today. The quickness of the clean especially, and the jerk also not too shabby.
Jirka: Clean and jerk is a testament to the bodyweight I gained. I am that much stronger now and although I know I also gained fat for me much more important is that I also gained some muscles and it shows in the strength increase. It was not the cleanest today, but it was quite good. I made 50kg jumps up until 220kg. Once I made 220kg I knew I was going to go straight to 240kg. And although technically clean was not the best, I have the strength, so I stabilized it at the bottom and stood up with it without any trouble. My strong front squats really are showing here. And the jerk, when nothing hurts (which it does not now) is also very strong and convincing.
Interviewer: And the squat? You are 10 kilos away from your goal of 350!
Jirka: It is great. I was not expecting it today. I was thinking I will squat up to 320 today, but then I thought, why not? I felt good, strong, rested too. In the morning I did some stretching, warm up and started getting myself mentally ready for the afternoon session which I knew was going to be very hard. This is also some sort of satisfaction for all the hard work and it showed me we are on the right track.
Interviewer (or some other guy maybe): It was quite an experience for me, I have never seen such weights been lifted.
Jirka: I am also very happy and satisfied to get to these numbers, because after years I feel like I make finally some progress again. I made my biggest lifts in 2012, clean and jerked 241kg at the European Under 23 Championship.
My best competition snatch is 190kg. I dont worry about snatch too much though, I know I will never be the best snatcher. But my clean and jerk has always been strong and I decided to improve and work on my strengths rather than weaknesses. I am now trying to improve my strength as much as I can to benefit my clean and jerk, hopefully get to 250kg.
How much will I snatch? I don’t know. I work on it, but I am not worrying about it that much.
It always bothered me that the snatch was simply not good enough, and no clean and jerk, however high, can pull me towards the best. Even if I could hang with the best in clean and jerk, my handicap after snatch was too high. But I told myself I am not going to worry about it, I will just snatch whatever I can and then will go aggressively in the clean and jerk. 250 could very well be a medal at the Worlds.
Interviewer: I remember at the first smartlabs seminar, you were answering a question how much you weighed and why you don’t gain weight.To which you replied that with gaining weight squats and clean and jerks are easier and lighter, but snatch is technically worse and slower. Why is that?
Jirka: I mentioned it today too, I gained weight and I know I got slower in the snatch. But I hope it will level up and eventually the gained strength will show in snatch too, For me snatch is technically more challenging, since I have shorter arms and legs. I find it difficult to set up for snatch. I can already feel, after gaining 8 kilos, that my set up is different. I had to make little tweaks, changed my stance, grip, technique slightly too, and I am fighting with it now. But I believe I can adjust and will stabilize my snatch at the weights it was before, maybe even improve a bit with the gained strength. But I know I will never be a great snatcher, and will never snatch 210kg. I wont worry about it.
Interview: During the weekend you had an exhibition at the Czech International strongmen meet in Brno. What did you show?
Jirka: I showed people clean and jerk, but with strongmen bar and plates, which are bigger in diameter and are steel, not bumpers. It was different for me, my whole life I have been training certain way and am used for certain path of the bar. I know how to pull, where to make the transition between different phases of the clean. Here I had to adjust, it did not look so smooth at first, but I was able to clean and jerk even 225kg, which I would say is not bad.
Interviewer: What caught your attention at the meet?
Jirka: There was one polish strongman who had a pretty nice technique on the axle bar. I enjoyed the whole event, Čestmír Šíma defended his title as Czechs strongest man.
I especially was curious how will the competitors fare at the axle bar. since I had my go with it too in clean and jerk. You could tell that most of these guys rely on their strength. I also have some strength, but I used mostly the technique to my advantage to lift the axle. It is quite similar to clean and jerk, and I was able to use my dynamic strength.
I was curious to see this event, since I dont attend them usually. They even asked me on the possibility of me competing in such event some day, and I did not say no. But it definitely won’t happen in the near future, maybe after I quit competing professionally in weightlifting.
Interviewer: Back to todays training one more time. It lasted almost 3,5 hours, and during it I could see the effects of synephrine, caffeine, and you also were drinking whey hydrolysate during it. Tell me something to it, and how often do you take them?
Jirka: I would add creatine to the list, but you mentioned it almost all. I personally always felt the effects of creatine on me, followed pretty much the common knowledge in my use. I was never looking for any breakout scientific wonders or formulas in supplementing. Just the classics, like bcaa, protein (hydrolysate), pre-workout formulas.
At the moment I swear by synephrine and caffeine, but eventually the body adapts so I change pre-workouts every now and then. I am lucky that basically all pre-workouts work well for me. Vitamins, minerals and thats about it.
Interviewer: Thank you for the training and those super performances. I wish you enjoy the burgers next weekend!
Jirka: Yes, burgers will be on sunday. Maybe we will do a video of it too.