(Here's Part 3 in our little series
on Bob Hoffman's greatest challenge.
Remember, we're back in 19134 -- and
Bob has been working like heck for
the past year, trying to make a
300 pound clean and jerk.)
The 13th of April fell on a Friday
No, Bob Hoffman didn't try for the 300
pound lift on Friday the 13th -- but he
did take a hard workout that morning at
the York barbell Club gym.
Then he drove to New Haven, CT., where
he stayed overnight.
The next day, he drove to Gardner, Mass.,
for the New England Weightlifting
After the contest, he drove to Boston,
where he stayed until late Tuesday, and
then he drove most of the night to make
the 430 mile trip back home to York.
Bob took his 40 pound dumbbells on the
trip, and trained with them in the morning
on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.
He rested on Wednesday after the long drive
home, and went to the York gym on Thursday,
He weighed in and found that he was about 8
pounds lighter than his usual weight at that
time of 247 pounds. It was difficult to keep
his weight up when he was traveling.
Bob told the York lifters he wasn't sure
if he was strong or not after the long
trip, but he'd soon know.
He warmed up with a 150 pound snatch, and
then did 170 twice.
From there, he made a big jump to 235, for
an easy clean and jerk.
Next he did 270, and the lifters who watched
him said it went easier than ever before.
From 270, he jumped to 290, and it, too,
went up easily and quickly.
Now he was a mere 10 pounds away from his
He chalked his hands, walked to the bar,
crouched down -- and pulled it to his
chest with power to spare -- but he couldn't
hold it, and the weight went crashing back
He tried again - same result.
Tried a third time. It was the same.
So he tried to continental the weight. Got
it to his chest - held it -- but missed the
(Note: in the clean, you pull the bar from
floor to chest in one "clean" movement. In
the continental, you lift the bar in two
or more stages -- floor to thighs, thighs to
stomach, with the bar resting on the buckle
of your lifting belt - and from there, to
the chest. In competition, you have to
clean the weight, but to get 300 pounds
overhead in the gym, anything was fair
Bob repeated the continental -- and once
again missed the jerk.
On his third attempt, he again pulled the
bar to his shoulders -- and this time he
made the jerk!
He held the bar overhead, grinning from
ear to ear as the York lifters clapped and
The bad part was, no one had bet against
him. When Bob did 280 for the first time, he
won a nickel bet on the lift -- and the same
for his first lift with 285. He wore the two
nickels on his watch chain to show folks the
kind of money you can make as a professional
And that's the way things were -- way back
in 1934! Hope you enjoyed it!
As always, thanks for reading and have a
great day. If you train today, make it a
Yours in strength,
P.S. For rugged strength and outstanding
muscular development, it's hard to beat
the kind of stand on your feet lifting they
did "back in the day" -- and this course
will teach you how to train like the old-
P.S. 2. My other books and courses are
P.S. 3. Thought for the Day: "Rule No. 1 is
to stand on your feet and lift heavy stuff.
There are no other rules, because you
don't need them."-- Brooks Kubik