Last week, we had to do a lot of cleans. A clean would look familiar if you watch a lot of Olympic weight lifting, but not so much if you're like me. It's a move that's more complicated than it needs to be. We can practice it over and over and over again, but it's something that needs to click in your head before you can do it right. It's not curling a weight up to your chest; it's getting under that weight.

The first time we did this last week, we did 5-4-3-2-1 reps. So we start out fairly heavy and try to work up to our heaviest weight. I was doing all right until I tried to lift 85 lbs. for my max. I knew I was trying to lift 85 lbs. and I had never cleaned that much. I still haven't cleaned that much. Sometimes I wish someone else would put the weight on so I wouldn't know how much I was trying to lift. So I took 5 lbs. off and felt OK with my 80 lb. max.

Then we had another round and once again, I tried to clean 80 lbs. I was getting tired and really, I was just ready to go. I was thinking about lifting it and not thinking about getting under it. I was getting pretty frustrated. Then lovely Emilee came in and reminded me of the basics. Lift it up until the mid-thigh, then get under it. And I did.

We also did cleans during another workout, but they were actually the easier part of that one. The next one we had to do cleans, burpees, and running. That one was fairly miserable, but the cleans again were the easier part.

I write all this realizing that my vocabulary has changed. Who cares about cleans? Why am I talking about them? It's a move that looks easy but is massively complicated. Most of us probably do it wrong. But we keep trying. We keep getting stronger. We talk about cleans and burpees and snatches (heh) and we may sweat and swear and get angry at ourselves during the workout, but we do it. We show up and we do the work. That's what matters.

And I need to clean the house. I'm having awesome, amazing Crossfit women over for food in a couple days. Must get things clean.

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