It’s Not Where You Start…It is Where You Finish

“On the platform as well as in life…it does not matter where you start…it matters where you finish.”


The new athlete banter that is disturbing…

“I just want to get one lift in”. “I don’t care if I make my lifts, I just want to try for a PR.” “I would rather bomb than open light”. “If I miss a lift, I still want to go up”.

I do believe that all coaches and athletes want to succeed. If you spend all your time and money training for a national meet, and bomb out…how is that gaining success? If you make one snatch and one clean and jerk…that is 33.33% and does not look like success to me.

I think athletes today are missing 2 key ingredients. 1. You have to make lifts to succeed. No one that bombed trying PR attempts has ever broke a record or won a medal! 2. The mind and job of an athlete is and should be different than that of a coach!!

In a perfect world every single athlete would get better every single meet and life would be bliss, sunny, and warm every single day. But enter reality, and we are not ever perfect or able to execute to the best of our ability every time. We are all suffering from the rare disease of being human. It is our reality.

We control the things that we can control, and we forecast the things that can go wrong. I have been coaching and competing in this sport for well over 20 years and I have always said…”it does not matter where you start, it matters where you finish.” A perfect example of that is a fine athlete of mine last weekend at the American Open Series 1 was less than pleased with me for lowering her openers. Her clean and jerk max in competition was 80, and she had a flight delay, didn’t sleep for 2 days and was a zombie. She made one snatch…12 kg lower than her max after missing her first and second attempt at the same weight (and missed her last 4 warm ups!!!).  My job was to get her the best success possible for THAT day. She was pissed…I opened her on CJ at 65. She made it….15 kg below her max….I KNOW she was PISSED!!! We went to 70, she looked good. I had my fabulous assistant coaches load 75 for her to take in the back, and she did. We went to 80 kg for her last attempt, and we made it……it does not matter where you start, it matters where you finish, and this fine athlete finished first in her second meet of her life, first national meet and came home with a gold medal. She may still be mad at me, but my job is to forecast, troubleshoot, and sift out every single bit of reality that is in my way on that day of competition. No one ever said that Coaching was easy! I always say that when things go wrong the athletes blame the coaches, and when they go right the athletes take all of the credit. Crazy job Coaches have!!!

My favorite athlete is the one who is sitting next to me after their last clean and jerk, whether at a local meet or a world championships, Olympic Trials,  or anything in-between, and they are taking their shoes off and they look over and say, “hey Coach…what did I lift?” That is a focused athlete, focused on their job, and trusting that the Coach is ready to do their job.

Some athletes are practice athletes, some athletes are meet athletes… building that “Coach-Athlete” relationship is the main thing that gets you through to gain success. Research has shown that the prevailing aspect for an athlete to succeed is their Coach/ Athlete relationship.

Robinson Weightlifting has been the largest weightlifting team in New England for a long time now, and one of the larger teams in the country. We are proud of our success and our process. Having been around as long as we have been, it is a current struggle to observe all of the many new unattached athletes coming into our sport and having such little success from poor choices on attempts.

We are committed to helping all of the new teams starting up and that is why we have launched our affiliate program, our certifications, as well as our quarterly seminar programs to help educate and teach athletes and coaches that need and want the help to get to the next level.

Please remember…on the platform as well as in life…it does not matter where you start…it matters where you finish.

God Speed –

Coach Robinson



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