T Nation

First PL Meet.

Hey folks I am quite new to the forum though I have been reading(testosterone)for a while.

Our gym is sponsoring a PL meet ( very rare in this country), and best of all its all about squat, Deadlift and Bench ( whereas mostly around here its the olympic lifts that ppl compete in).

Have a few questions for the folks like Ericka and whomever else have been in one of these meets.

I am 5’7" or 8" and about 180 lbs. Mostly lower body. Legs are strong as all hell, limiting factor on squat are lower back and abs. Am getting some good mornings, hyper extensions and ab work done to improve.

Squat : 5 rep max 360 lbs shoulder width legs, lil below parallel and no belt.

Deadlift: 340 lbs no belt 3 rep max

Bench: 225 1 rep max. ( yes yes I know all five of my grammas can lift more than me on bench)

Now the questions are as follows:

a) Since the PL is on sept 18th should I try to go wide with my stance on Squat or is it better just to stick to what I am doing. (I do understand that wider makes the distance shorter)

b) I am on Joe Defrancos Westside for Skinny Bastards and on week 3. I will change the exercises next week ( 3 week phases ) but will continue with the program for about 12 weeks in all. Should I be training along the lines of West side by having upper and lower max and dynamic days?

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks folks.


Congrats on entering the meet. I have been training Westside for 3 months now and I would reccomend going wide with your stance. Your numbers may go down at first, as Dave Tate mentioned in one of his articles about whne he started at Westside, but in the end your hips and P-Chain will get stronger and your numbers will go up. I would reccomend doing the DE and ME days also and making sure your volume on your supplemental work is enough to keep those body parts strong. Good luck and welcome to the darkside.

I just have a clarification.

PL=Squat, Bench, Deadlift

OL=Olympic Lifts.

Why are you using joe defrancos program to get ready for a powerlifting meet when its not a damn powerlifting program…do yourself a favor and stick witht he pure westside program for powerlifting…when i first started using it i benched 240 pounds and weighed 180…now 2 years later at 22 i will sq near 800 bench over 500…and weigh 280 pounds…i think it worked fine for this skinny dude…bm

oh yea since this is your first meet get your gear very veyr early…get it now and use it a lot in training…bm

Thanks for the words of advice. I appreciate it.


Thank you as well. Couple questions though. You have mentioned that 2 yrs ago you were at 180 and be benching 240 lbs, you make no mention of your squat.

Fast forward to 2 yrs later ( nowadays presumably) and you are benching 500 or so and squatting 800 correct. Would it be fair to say that you are using more than the pound o week diet to gain 50 lbs a year ?

As for the equipment , well sad to say but theres no such thing in the market around here and I am not even sure if its allowed around these here parts.

But thank you again. I do appreciate your time.

If the meet is being sanctioned by one of the PL federations, find out which one. Pay for their membership card now, so you can ask for a copy of their rulebook. If the meet is unsanctioned, ask the meet director or HMFWIC which rules will be used. Get a copy of the rules and study them. (You don’t even know how to cheat, if you don’t know the rules!)

At a local contest, the judges may or may not know what they’re doing. If they don’t, they’ll probably pass a lot of squats that don’t break parallel. Just in case they know what to look for, you need to show them slightly-below-parallel squat depth. If possible, do all of your ME squats with someone who knows how to judge SQ depth and who won’t let you get by with “almost low enough.” This one rule causes more grief for more lifters than all of the others combined. (Of all the recreational lifters and football players you see doing squats, few or none are doing their heaviest squats as low as you need to go in a contest.)
Strength & courage,
“Coach Joe”


Go to www.mattsmithonline.com and check out his videos. There you will see some very big and very deep squats. Matt is the strongest guy at Westside and is only 29.

Ok you have me very confused…what do you mean equipment is allowed in your parts…you live in Californa??..you buy powerlifitng equipment online…what federation is your meet in all federations wear equipment…your other question confuses me also…all i can say is i have gained alot of weight…you have to have a certain amount of mass to lift big weights…bm

Thank you very much I appreciate the input boss. As for federation rules I will need to look it up but I doubt they have much. Reason I say that is cause while I have lived the last 7 years ( 96 - 2003 ) in cali, I am currently in Pakistan.

Same info big guy. I dont live in cali anymore and hence no equipment sorry for the confusion. I live in a city called Islamabad in Pakistan.

Thank you again. And I am going to check matts site Asap.

Thanks again gentlemen.

ok sorry about that …lol…i was wondering about what you were talking about…wow a pl meet in pakistan enjoy and set some pr’s…bm

No need to be sorry and I will set some prs.

Thanks again for your time and advice.

start box squatting