chris garberWTF have I gone and done NOW? Cray cray!

The 2019 National Masters Championships, Salt Lake City, Utah, March 28-31st.

WTF have I done…

To start, take a look at my idol, Tatiana Kashirina, to get an idea of what a proper Snatch and Clean and Jerk should look. Cray!

It will all go down for me on, Thursday, BLUE PLATFORM, March 28th, Weigh In 1:45pm. Start 3:45pm. All times, MT. I am in the M55 Group, which encompasses Men between the ages of 55 and 59, and specifically an 89kg bodyweight lifter within this group of men.

chris garber

(Start: 2:45pm Pacific, 4:45pm Central, 5:45pm Eastern…)


A short description about how this will go down… Introductions of all of the athletes in my session should start at 3:45pm MT, or Mountain Time Zone, unless they are running slightly behind. If on schedule, lifting should begin around 3:55pm in my session, on the Blue Platform. There are two lifts—the Snatch and the Clean and Jerk. Up first will be the Snatch. I will not know how much I will be lifting—that is up to Coach Reyes. The weight loaded on to the bar will increase per the attempts being made, I will be “slotted” in and lift when the bar is loaded with the weight determined by Coach Reyes. We all will get (3) attempts at each lift. The goal will be to get all three of both lifts, or go 6/6 for the day. Once I am finished with my three successful Snatch attempts, I will then wait for the other athletes to finish their three Snatch attempts. During the end of the Snatch portion, I will be in the warm up area beginning to get ready for my Clean and Jerk attempts. There will be a 10 minute break between Snatch and the Clean and Jerk. Same protocol for the Clean and Jerk.

A few behind the scenes tidbits in my regard… My bodyweight has been excellent, and at the time of weigh in, I should be hovering around 88.5kg. This is my first National Masters Meet, and the attempts on the platform will be at my maximum abilities. We will not have the luxury of starting out low and getting the nerves out of the way—we will go for it from the get go… If my first attempt is 66kg in the Snatch, fasten your seat belts—this will mean that all has gone well in the warmup area, and we are going for it. If this is the case, I will either match a successful attempt made in training three weeks ago or go above it, via 1kg. (Or, Jean Holloway may prefer that we not get greedy… Smirk!) I may catch a break in the Snatch portion and have one other competitor to go back and forth—otherwise, I will have to “follow myself” and be limited to a 2 minute rest. Coach Reyes though will extend the clock as much as he can to allow rest between the attempts. We have been training with a clock on the last two weeks in my max efforts to simulate what will happen, and over the last months training to get under the bar fast and aggressively. You will hear Coach Reyes yelling at me these key points… I’ll have three shots and plan on making all three! When the final men are on stage finishing up the Snatch portion, I will be backstage, will have unwrapped my knees, eaten a small bit, but then be tasked with beginning to warm up for the Clean and Jerk.

The Clean and Jerk. This will undertake a renewed focus in the next months, flexibility and a change of technical skills to get me in to the fray of the other competitors down the road. I am told, I might be changing my nationality to Chinese as we will adapt their technique in the Jerk!!! I anticipate that a technical error I am making in the Clean will be addressed as well. But, these three attempts will be back to back, most assuredly. I am a good 10kg below where I should be. We will fix it. It will take everything in me to make what will be on the bar. Fasten your seatbelts!!!! AND, pray for me please!!!!

One area of focus and goals, the attempts need to be technically solid. Not a hot mess. They will be technically solid. They WILL. I am ready to go. Feeling GREAT. Once the adrenaline kicks in, and my competitive fire lights, watch out!! So very fortunate. I can not thank enough my teammates, Sean Waxman, and Jorge Reyes. It has been a journey to get to this point. Perseverance. EFFORT.

p.s. My sister, Kelly Garber, will be lifting on the White Platform, exact same time. I expect her to sweep Gold in both lifts, and Total!

chris garber