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Advice about competing (powerlifting)16186

GrizzlyBerg private msg quote post Address this user
Saw Chad Smith post this on instagram earlier. Decided it was worth a share with everyone. I 100% agree with everything he says here.

Control what you can control and don't worry about what you cant.
This morning I saw a discussion going on about how people shouldn't expect to lift at the same levels during a meet as they do in the gym because of the following factors...

1- Sleep
2- Travel
3- Different Barbells
4- Judging
5- Different Facility
6- Commands
7- Weight Cutting
8- Stress
9- Maxing on Previous Lifts
10- Warm Up Areas

So let me give you my take on these quickly...

1- I spend the majority of the day before I meet in a state a perpetual state of napping, so in the event that I have some anxiousness the night before and can't sleep that well, it doesn't really matter. If you have to work the day before a meet, that's understandable, but you likely have control of what time you go to sleep most nights, so for the week leading up to a meet, go to sleep an hour or two earlier each night.

2- This could present some challenges with sleeping, but unless you're flying halfway around the world only 2-3 days before competing or going to some remote area, travel shouldn't affect much. Find restaurants you're familiar with or bring your food with you. Sure hotel beds aren't great, but you can take naps or go to sleep earlier to make up for it. I live in SoCal and my best meets have come in Australia, Sacramento (400 miles north), Kentucky, Tennessee, and Ohio...so save your traveling excuse.

3- This one I have to admit I'm not very perceptive of. I train all my lifts on a Texas Power Bar and now since that bar is getting kinda bent, I train the deadlift on an Eleiko bar. I couldn't tell you what my favorite is between a Texas Squat Bar, Mastadon, Iron Wolfe Bar or any others, same with the different deadlift bars, you know why? Because it doesn't matter. Be great at squatting, benching and deadlifting and you'll be able to do that well on any bar. With that being said, if you have nice specialty bars, don't use them all the time or don't use the same ones all the time, don't have a favorite bar. You can control what bar you use in training, but you can't control it in a meet so when you have control, make sure that when you have control, you condition yourself to be ready for anything.

4- Every fed has the rules written basically the same but they obviously enforce them differently. Train to a high standard, leave no doubt about your lifts in training, don't say 'that one was close but I bet it will pass in the meet' and hold your training partners to a high standard. The times when basically everyone in the room thinks its a good lift but the judges turn it down are few and far between.

5- Being in a different facility could create some issues about finding focal points, etc but still you can do things to set yourself up for success. Don't always train in the same place, even in the same gym you can go to a different rack or face a different way-do anything you can to avoid allowing yourself to get too comfortable in your perfect training environment. Bringing something like spray tacky (pre-wrap spray) with you to a meet can help you avoid issues with lack of traction during benching, etc.

6- Practice the commands and make them strict. I'd rather train with a long press command and compete with a short one than vice versa.

7- This is a real issue, but unless you have a shot at an all-time world record (not a fed record or some sort) then you probably shouldn't be cutting an amount of weight that is going to have a significant effect on your lifts.

8- For me, a meet isn't a stressful time, it is a time to showcase my months of hard work. The weights in a meet weigh the same as the weights in a gym, so if you are well prepared there isn't much to stress about. None of us are dependent on a meet performance to pay our bills or feed our families, so you're lifting for fun-enjoy it.

9- Certainly 3 heavy squats can impact your deadlifts later in the day, but if you're training hard, doing some decent volume of competitive exercises and variations and have some work capacity, this should be too much of an issue with the adrenaline of a meet. If you are just building up to a heavy single in the gym and then going home, your performance in a meet where you have to do multiple heavy attempts will suffer and you need to reevaluate what you're doing in training.

10- Warmup areas at meets can be a bit hectic and you might have to be a bit of an asshole sometimes to make sure you get done what you need to get done. I'd rather have to slow down my warmup some then speed it up, so start a bit early. Be assertive in the warmup room, make sure you get the weights you need and take the sets you want-you've worked hard to prepare, so don't miss lifts because you didn't warmup the way you needed to because you weren't assertive about getting the weights you need.


There will inevitably be things that happen at a meet that are outside of your control but if you let those things get to you, you're wasting your energy.
You can control how good of a training plan you create and how well you execute your plan, focus on those things and don't stress about what other people are doing or things that are beyond your control.
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cardinal private msg quote post Address this user
This is really interesting because most people seem to think that a meet environment would psyche them up and allow them to hit PRs. I imagine a lot of people under estimate the factors you've outlined, overshoot their numbers and then leave a meet disappointed.

Props for the info and for keeping it real.
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FiremanSi private msg quote post Address this user
@GrizzlyBerg Seen it, read every bit and as always he didn't fail to deliver.
Absolute hero !!
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SRorhrbac0808 private msg quote post Address this user
Skimmed though. The night before the meet I woke up like every hour pumped up ready to go. Still
Murdered 3 PRs. Ftw
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Eat2Trainn247 private msg quote post Address this user
@GrizzlyBerg great find--thanks for sharing. Will definitely refer back to this as my meet approaches!
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