T Nation

a bad powerlifting meet

I had a terrible meet this saturday. My squat suit ripped during warmups and so i had to lift raw + wraps. I made my opener and dropped my next two attempts, but went 3 for 3 with a 35 lb PR so that part isnt’ too bad.
What is bad is after the 3rd attempt, the vision out of my left eye became cloudy like looking through frosted glass. Only about half of the field was effected like this. My eyes were bloodshot, but bloodshot has happened before when straining to lift. I think i held my breath too much … I was very nervous because it was a home crowd. I also took ephedrine and caffeine prior to lifting, but this is normal. I then scratched from the meet because i didnt’ want to go blind. I went to a doctors office and was referred to an optometrist. He examined me and said that it was nothing serious likely a leaking blood vessel which has already healed. He advised no lifting for a week and then use the next week to gradually get back to top form and get advice from other sources about breath-holding techniques so it wouldn’t recur. This is fine as I was already going to take this week for active recovery. My questions are

  1. has anyone had this happen to them?
  2. can anyone refer me to an article to show me the right way to breathe or hold my breath or whatever during a max attempt…not BODYBUILDING, but Powerlifting. thank you.

Never happened to me, but a training partner blew a vessel once, eye turned all bloody but nothing “significant”…as for breathing, do a Valsalva until you are through your sticking point, at which point I think you can start letting the air out slowly (from Siff). I’ve found it unnecessary to do the Valsalva all the way through, unless you want broken vessels around eyes, neck, etc…just make sure to stay tight throughout the lift.

Pavelin his books PTP and bullet proved abs, discusses breathing techniques for max lifts.

never happened to be, but i’ve seen it happen to other people. i think i hold my breath for the whole squat. i’ll have to check it out next time. but i see people start blowing air out once they make it through the sticking point. good luck. what meet was it? what kind of suit?

I will pick up Power to the People, I think. See I am pretty sure that because of my nerves I held my breath from the time I unracked the bar to the completion of the lift and strained extra hard doing some sort of good morning style also. I relied more on brute strength because of the nerves than on good technique I’d been practicing. The suit was a Titan single poly that a friend sold me for 10 bucks I’d used it in one other meet and about 15 times in the gym over the last year.

Check out elitefitnesssystems.com . that is Date Tate’s website. alot of info on there. I’m not sure if you have ever tried westside lifting, but it did WONDERS for my strenghth…