I stayed in Vegas for three nights and I managed to organise a training session with John Broz, an American super heavyweight, who also coaches a group of young lifters in the "Average Broz" club. This was definitely a session to remember because I learned a lot from John, I really enjoyed watching his young lifters--they were all 19--and I lifted well for my own standards also.
I have a great interview with John Broz below, and it is particularly interesting because he lived with Antonio " I have Snatched the biggest weight in history" Krastev for three years. Listen to what he has to say and I can guarantee it will have you looking at your own training in a new light.
There were three 19 year old lifters who I trained with: Pat Mendes, a super heavy weighing 125kg who I watched Power Snatch 135 and Power Clean 170; Taylor Smith, a 94kg lifter who I watched Snatch 120 and Clean and Jerk 145; and Brett, a 110kg lifter who Clean and Jerked 145 and Power Snatched 110. This was the fifth or sixth time he has ever Snatched or Jerked. Pat and Taylor have been training for just over a year and Brett for six months. Their power was astonishing and to say they have incredible raw talent is like saying Cathal Byrd has massive calves: both statements are gospel. I have videos of these three lifters along with my own lifts from the session to follow soon.
As far as my own training went, it got a kick up the proverbial, because these guys were strong and that pushed me forward also. I did the following:
Snatch doubles: I worked up to a double with 100kg for a pb. Then I followed it with a double with 102.5 and after missing the second Snatch with 105kg in two sets, I got both the third time. This was an 8kg pb in the Snatch double so I was pretty chuffed. With the doubles, the technique is never as pretty as with singles, but I was happy. John was urging me to be more aggressive with how I turn the bar over and pull it into the proper recieving position over the head.
Power Clean and Power Jerk: I worked up to 125kg and I Cleaned 130 maybe six times, missing the Power Jerk each time due to a slow lockout. I am still not used to the Power Jerk, but it is getting better gradually. John was making the points that I was too tense in the rack position--Andy Murphy has said likewise--and also that I was not being forceful enough with how I drive and lock the bar into the right position over my head.
Back Squat--I worked up to a double with 160kg. I mentioned to John that my legs have not felt strong since I got over here, and he said that this was because of all the walking I have been doing, being on holiday and all. He also mentioned that I was Snatching well because my back was fresh, but my legs were not, which affected my Cleans and Squats.
I don't have the time or inclination to write down all I learned from John, but I will say this: He gives his lifters an international perspective and steers clear of national focus. He plays the old school Ironmind training hall tapes and world championship videos during training sessions so that the guys have proper form to watch. I felt like I was given an injection of adrenaline after training in his gym and that is something that I think we all need from time to time. Do yourself a favour and watch the video below. You may or may not agree with everything John says, but it will certainly make you think.