Hoist: the more you say it, the funnier it sounds

I like non-lifting writers’ descriptions of weightlifting moves. “Hoist” is the favorite verb for any lift. This month, Nick Heil reports for Outside on his workouts at CrossFit offshoot
Gym Jones. Heil goes in
for a weekend seminar and quits in the middle of some
of the workouts. He especially hates the “dead lift.” His use of two words
reminded me of the Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer. “I don’t understand your
‘work outs’ and your ‘dead lifts’…”

Heil says a deadlift involves “standing in front of a loaded barbell, squatting down, and then hoisting the
weight to your thighs. The more weight you add, the more it feels as if
your spine is going to splinter like a celery stalk.”

Hoist it, baby! Or you could just deadlift it. Get some
coaching. If you learn to pressurize, you won’t feel like a celery stalk. If you learn the right starting position, you won’t think you’re “squatting down” when you’re deadlifting.

Earlier this year, Olympics reporting was rife with hoisting.

The International Herald Tribune: “On her third lift, she hoisted 110 kilograms over her head to safely set the record.”

From Boston.com: “To aspiring Olympian Melanie Roach, hoisting barbells is nothing compared with the challenge of raising an autistic child.”

From ABC News: “…at the Olympic weightlifting trials in Atlanta, Ga., Melanie Roach successfully hoisted 228.8 pounds over her head.”

From US News & World Report: Melanie Roach can hoist a 230-pound barbell above her head.”

Seattle P-I: “Every man reading this is presently trying to figure out if he could lift 234 pounds over his head. Dear sirs, you cannot. In the interests of lower backs — and male egos — across our city, please, don’t try. Most couldn’t hoist it up above their knees.” This article had a bonus verb: to toss. “…she tossed 233.69 pounds in the clean and jerk.” That sounds like a lot of barf.

The Associated Press: “…locked up her spot by hoisting just under 240 pounds on her second attempt… Roach let out a yell while posing with the bar above her head.” Bonus word: posing.

USA Today: “On each hoist, that clenched expression turned into a wide, white smile as the bar soared above her head — and stayed there until she decided to drop it.” Soaring! I like that triumphal word choice.

If you think “hoist” is amusing, Google the phrase “melanie roach hoist” and see how many hits you get.

Using verbs other than hoist is Anthony Lane in The New Yorker, in his excellent and funny reports from Beijing: “In less than ten hours, tiny Chinese weight lifters would start picking up lumps of metal as heavy as the man from Guam and holding them over their heads.”

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