Well after lifting for 11 months today was my first ever real glimpse into what it would be like to compete in a powerlifting meet. It wasn’t because I had the itch, but because I was told it was all part of the process. I was put on the Sheiko training program recently without knowing it and that program requires a mini meet. At least that is what I have been told!
A majority of my training occurs at Gold’s Gym, but a couple of Sunday’s a month I will go down to the dungeon. It is where the powerlifting crew 22nd Street resides. If you want to get strong this is the place you go in Des Moines no questions asked.
The difference between lifting weights at Gold’s versus the dungeon is night and day. Lifting with metal plates is noticeably heavier than using the rubber bumper plates at Gold’s. So after I hit 170 pounds on squat for my first rep today they looked over at me and said that is equivalent to what it felt when you hit your 190 pound squat PR at Gold’s awhile back. After that I hit 180 pounds on squat and was called my final attempt because I pitched forward a little bit. It is frustrating when you are moving more weight, but the number you report is lower. The only people who understand the difference in the weights are those who have experienced it!
Next up was bench press. My current one rep max on bench is 135 pounds at Gold’s and it was a painful grind to get that. I don’t think I will ever forget that day not only because it was the most straining I have ever done during a lift, but because that was the day I could say I could bench with a plate on each side. Today I successfully hit all 3 lifts and the last was 140 pounds of real weight. I did have to grind for a few seconds, but once I got past it the lockout came pretty easy. This would be equal to 145-150 pounds easily at Gold’s!
Now to the last lift of the day. My current PR was hitting 225 pounds for two reps at Gold’s Gym a little under two months ago. Today, my second pull was 225 pounds and it was amazing how much more difficult it was to lift. REAL WEIGHT was the key today. I failed 235 twice so my current PR will now be 225 pounds of real weight versus plastic bumper plates.
I will admit that at the end of the session I felt defeated and frustrated. Defeat and failure are not something I handle well. Then, I had to remember it is part of the process of training. When I hit my original squat, bench, and deadlift PR’s I weighed about 8-10 pounds more. So the fact I have been able to maintain and build strength while shedding fat means my coefficient has improved. Personally there is no powerlifting meet in site for me, but your coefficient is the difference between taking home first and second.
In the end I need to remember to celebrate my successes along the way. I definitely feel much stronger than I did 11 months ago, 6 months ago and even 2 months ago. It has been a constant changing process. I need to be happy with the fact I handled 140 pounds on bench today and I am almost to my goal of benching my body weight!!!
Thank you to all of my support crew out there. Hopefully next time I will have some new PR’s to report!
Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on those things you are thankful for. I personally try to lead a life of being thankful for the amazing people in my life on a daily basis. Sometimes I am not always the best at showing or saying it so here are a few special thank you:
Lastly, thank you to anyone and everyone who has crossed my path. Each and everyone of you has an an impact on my life and I am grateful for that!
I started lifting to get strong with the start of 2013. My trainer and friend told me that I would need to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Wasn’t really fan since I had no idea how uncomfortable it would get. Let’s just stay that in the last 11 months there has been a whole lot of uncomfortableness experienced by me when it comes to weight training.
Today while training I had a realization of how much I have grown. Today was a light squat day with 5 sets of 3 at 135 pounds. For all of you out there that don’t lift that is a bar with a 45 pound plate on each side. Also known as intimidating as hell for first time female lifters! While I was in the middle of my sets I realized that if you would have asked me to squat 135 pounds without a spot 6 months ago I would of had a mental freak out session with myself and wouldn’t feel comfortable squatting. Not today my friends. I killed it and felt really good doing it!
Today I also had to bench 125 pounds for a single rep twice. Up until 3 weeks ago I would have told you that was heavy weight, but not after last Wednesday when I was informed I was going to bench 170 pounds off of 4 boards for 2 sets of 3. When I saw that as part of my workout for the day I literally thought my trainer had lost his damn mind!
Here is my history with benching: About 4 months ago I went for a PR and hit 135 pounds, but failed 140. The 4 months after that were spent doing speed work and higher reps. So, 2 weeks ago when I was told I had to bench 155 pounds off of boards I flipped, but 170 the following week……you high?
Today was a simple 125 pounds, which made me feel happy because honestly 2 sets of 3 of 170 pounds on bench was the most uncomfortable and painful benching I have ever experienced. The only hiccup was that I knew I wouldn’t have a good hand out. So I knew I was going to have to do a full 125 pound bench twice with most likely the 2 worst hand outs known to man. Guess what…..I was right! The guy who handed out to me literally pulled my back up off the bench and then dropped the weight decently quick on me. So instead of my back staying nice and tight and locked into position during the hand out I had to make sure the weight didn’t come crashing down on my chest first and then reset before making the attempt. Yeah, not efficient!
Then, on top of that I told him to spot me because I haven’t done a full range 125 pound bench in awhile. So, what does he proceed to do? He crouches down and follows the bar down to my chest and back up with his hands not anywhere near the bar. Stellar performance…..NOT! I was pretty proud of myself that I felt comfortable enough benching 125 pounds today, not only once, but twice with the worst hand out and spot!
Today was a happy dance moment inside. I realized how much I have grown in the last 11 months. The things that used to make me uncomfortable now bring a sense of comfort. I have always preached to celebrate your successes along the way and today is one of those days for me so I am going to celebrate!