Have you ever attempted to PR a deadlift knowing that you round your back? Perhaps you’re adding 5 lbs. to your 1 1/4 front squats every week, but you can’t keep your chest up in the bottom, and your elbows are coming dangerously close to colliding with your knees. It’s not worth it. At best you PR with flawed mechanics; at worst you injure yourself.
Yes, an Rx looks great next to your name after a WOD, and PRs feed the ego, but taking shortcuts to achieve these feats cheapens the accomplishment. Technique trumps everything. The goal should be for the movements to become easier, more efficient and natural no matter how long it takes you to get there.
After months of grinding through cleans and snatches with horrible form, I recently decided to break my olympic lifting down to basics. Now, instead of stroking my ego by completing every workout as prescribed, or shooting for new PRs, I have adopted a crawl before you walk mind set. This means doing technique work with a PVC pipe and a technique bar before classes with Olympic lifting elements, and only using weights that allow me to maintain perfect form throughout a WOD. I’ve found that humble pie tastes pretty damn good with solid mechanics.
Are you trying to progress too quickly? Should you go back to basics and work on your fundamentals?