RPS North Kentucky Throwdown – Recap

My first powerlifting meet of the year is in the books and, as always, there is a lot to take away from a day so packed full of excitement and opportunities for learning. The day began at about 6:30am when my eyes popped open and I couldn’t get back to sleep. I was just too excited for the day ahead. I weighed about 250 when I woke up which is my normal training weight so I just ate a standard breakfast and packed my stuff. We arrived at River City Barbell around 7:30 and set up base camp for the day, greeting the rest of the team as they arrived. After a quick rules meeting, I began stretching out and foam rolling while the first flight took their squat attempts. I assume that the rest of my teammates will be writing similar meet recaps so I will not go into too much detail as to how everyone performed. I will break down my lifting experience from yesterday by lift as follows.

Squat – 

Squat was my biggest question mark going into this meet. My previous meet PR was 446lbs before yesterday but I knew I had made great strides in this area and would blow that number away at this meet. I had hit 475lbs in sleeves alone while squatting at Brandon’s gym with a monolift but couldn’t afford to over estimate my ability, especially with my opening lift. I decided to set my opener at 450lbs as this was going to be easy and also a new personal record. I smoked that rep and continued on to hit 480 and finally 500 with the same sense of ease. I know I left 20 or 30 pounds on the squat platform but I will come back to get those later. I hit the numbers I was planning on hitting and built confidence going into the bench. Overall, I got a 54 pound PR on the squat and that is a massive accomplishment. I finally performed to my full potential on the squat during a meet after screwing up during the last few outings.

Bench –

Things came off the rails a little on the bench but i still set a new personal record. I had hit 345 in training on the bench but once again did not want to overdo my first attempt and risk messing up too badly. I hit 315 as my opening attempt but was called for lifting my butt off the bench. After consulting with Brandon, I decided to retry the 315 press and got it up no problem on my second attempt. This put me in a tough spot regarding what weight to go for on my final attempt but I called 330 trying to be conservative. On my final try, I got stuck with 330lbs about half way through the lockout and had to have my spotters take it. Again, I left 10 or 20 pounds on the platform but hit a new personal record in a meet.

Deadlift –

Deadlift has been my ace in the hole ever since I started competing. If you told me I had to add an extra 5lbs to my total to win a meet I would get it on my deadlift. Yesterday however, I was put in a position where I had no idea what condition my deadlift was in. For the month leading up to the meet I had not been able to pull heavy which left a big question mark for the lift that had been my best in the past. I set my opener conservatively at 515 and decided to see how warm-ups felt before making changes to that. Warm-ups went very well so I decided to stick with the 515 opener. This weight went up like nothing along with my second attempt of 535. On my final attempt. I called for 550 pounds which would have been a 5lb meet PR for me. I gave this weight everything I had but I just couldn’t get the bar above my knee. I know that if I had just been able to pull it an inch further I could have locked it out. Overall, I did not do re-injure anything and deadlifts felt better than they have since mid-summer. I was happy with finishing my day on the platform in one piece and with new PRs on two of the three lifts.

Conclusion –

My only real goal for this meet was a 1400lb total. I fell a little short of that, finishing the day with a total of 1350 but I did leave poundage on all the lifts that I could have gotten. As I mentioned briefly at the beginning of this post, there is a lot to be learned during a powerlifting meet. One’s weaknesses become very apparent very quickly. Although I fell a little short of my goal I know I was capable of hitting the right weights, the cards just didn’t fall that way. I now have a very clear picture of the weaknesses I have which need to be brought up and what I can do differently to improve my chances going forward. As for right now, I plan on resting most of this week and getting caught up on school/administration items. I will probably get back in the gym around Thursday and start following a new, Post-Meet program that Brandon is about to release. This will be a high volume, bodybuilding style program which will get me back in shape to start lifting in an off-season style once that concludes. I appreciate all the kind words I have received during this prep and from my meet results as they are ever encouraging. A big shout-out goes to all of Purdue barbell who competed and cheered us on yesterday. I have the best team I could ever ask for of that I have no doubt. Until next time!

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