Mike has REALLY good advice.
Oly lifting is fucking awesome, but hard to find people. So, although you won’t be able to reap all the benefits of the lifts without doing them, you can get GREAT general prep for the work by
Getting fucking mobile as hell in the hips, hamstrings, T-Spine, and shoulders. Without that you can’t possibly get the proper positions for the clean and snatch, so you absolutely have to be mobile. This includes both stretching and also mobility drills (“stretching with movement” sort of…basically learning to get into and out of flexible positions, rather than just “sitting and reaching”) Look up Defranco’s Agile 8 as an example of mobility drills. There are tons, lots better for olympic lifting but that’s a good general one that comes to mind fast. Check out MobilityWOD.com
Getting fucking strong in the back squat, high bar, ass to grass
Getting fucking strong as hell in the front squat, ass to grass, and learning really, really crisp technique–tech is most important of all because you have to front squat every clean up
Getting really damned strong overhead. Shoulders, triceps, Overhead squat–ass to grass (notice a pattern?). The overhead squat is absolutely fundamental to learning the snatch, and being strong out of the bottom of the snatch, and is a staple beginner Olympic lifting lift.
Doing these 4 things will set you up for success when you finally get a good olympic bar and/or find somebody who can coach effectively. In fact, these 4 things are things that ALL successful olympic lifters continue to focus on in various ways, no matter what level of competition they’re at from local to Olympic. Not everybody focuses on the same lifts in their veteran years, but they ALL focus on the same positions–front/back squat, overhead strength. So start there.
In addition to those, do tons, and I mean TONS of reps with the empty bar–or even better a broomstick–on the basic positions of the olympic lifts. The one single thing that everybody skimps on or overestimates their “expertise” on is technique. They get tired of “practicing” and want to "do. Classic run before walking scenario. This a) limits their future strength potential by ingraining seriously stubborn bad habits that take forever to untrain and b) predisposes them to injury because they’re doing it fucking wrong and sloppy.
That’s why you go light–you make mistakes with weights (or rather and empty bar or broomstick) that won’t hurt you lol. Look up Glenn Pendlay, Tommy Kono for video tutorials on basic positions and reasons for them in the olympic lifts.
You don’t even have to do the whole lift, just practice the cues and getting into and out of positions smoothly and SLOOOOWLY with a bar. Positioning is everything in olympic lifting and positioning is learned best by learning how it “feels” to get into and out of a proper position, and hold the proper position, slowly. —>funnily enough, this is why lots of martial arts teach you basic positions and punches and have you hold them for minutes at a time and go achingly slow…you gotta memorize how a position feels to be able to hit it properly down the road.
fucking mobile at hips, hamstrings, ankles, shoulders, T-spine
fucking deep ass back squat strength, don’t ever ever compromise on it, it’s more important for oly lifting that powerlifting (although I love my powerlifting)
fucking crisp technique and strength on front squat
Really friggin strong overhead strength: strict strict pressing, push pressing, overhead squatting, shoulder strength and back strength in general (rear delts!)
and last—practice slowly getting into and out of positions in the snatch at least, and clean too hopefully, with a broomstick or empty bar. Practice slow, and practice a million reps. This can be a warm-up for your strength training, so you actually practice it and so it actually gets the blood flowing a little for your workouts with regular lifts. Again, Glenn Pendlay and Tommy Kono–can’t be overstated. It’s never good to learn from a video if you can help it, but they do some really damned good tutorials on basic positions in the olympic lifts and that can help you a ton until you get a good bar and bumpers or find a coach.
I’d suggest that gym you hit at least 2x a month instead of 1x a month. Lots of money I know, but you need more time with a coach than less. Money is money, but good instruction is priceless.
Dude, welcome man I’m excited for you. It’s a long hard road, but it’s damned fun!