By Jacob Sterny, Head Coach, Valhalla Barbell Club


It’s that time of year!  The time of year where we all come together to reflect on how amazing our past 365 ¼ days were and to share our company with those we deem most important.  It’s a time of giving, love and appreciation for all that we have. From friends and family to careers and a roof over your head you are the most grateful person to have ever lived (suck it Ghandi).  But, if all of this is the case, then why is Coach so damn salty?


The Salty Coach and Santa


Every year for the past 10+ years of your weightlifting coach’s career they have asked for the same gift from good ole Saint Nick, a 1 kg increase on their Snatch.  You’ll remember from our first installment that Coach was never good enough to make it to Nationals. Now, they haven’t seen a PR in so long that even when they visualize themselves performing a lift, they miss it.  At this point it’s not advisable for your safety to ask coach is they believe in Santa.  Doing so can result in an emphatic no and coach launching into other things he views as conspiracy theories (much like your ability to do anything correctly…ever).  Steer clear.


The Salty Coach and Grandpa


You show up to training and are just about to ask Coach if he intended on giving you Single Arm, Barbell, Overhead Pistols when you are hit with flashbacks of your past family Christmas’s.  That’s right, Coach smells like Grandpa. Weightlifting coaches drink, but even more so at this time of the year. The voices that your coach hears in their head are typically held at bay during the middle of the competitive calendar, but grow stronger nearer the year’s end.  


That time that your coach bombed at a local non-sanctioned event. The time when they invested all of their money in the Attitude Nation gym only to have it fold like your spine when you get pinned by a heavy back squat.  Hell even the time when Coach realized that his heaviest total would not hold up in a weight class three levels down from them at an American Open Series Event. All of these start to grow louder at the end of the year. If you’re looking to help coach his Christmas gift better be a bottle of Bourbon.


The Salty Coach and Peanut Brittle


With the wind picking up and the temperature dropping you’ve noticed that Coach is not moving very fast or very far during your training sessions.  Now, instead of talking with you directly, he’s shouting and gesturing obscenities from across the room so that everyone within earshot can hear just how terrible you’re doing.  No. Coach is not dying (fear not for a Salty Coach never truly dies). Years of an attempt at, “Bulgarian Training”, gallon tubs of C4 and endless nights of drinking themselves to sleep have made it hard for your coach to move in the cold weather.  If you happen to piss them off simply move your barbell to the other side of the room. They won’t chase you and if they do, they won’t be there to get you before the end of your session.


In all seriousness Salty Coach needs some love, too. So, give your coach some love during this time of year.  Gifts that are suitable would be coffee, large amounts of alcohol or you doing exactly what your coach asks you to do.  If you’re a hugger be sure to bring a friend with you. Your friend can prevent Coach from killing you (or at least help the authorities identify your body).


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