T Nation

Looking to Enter my First Meet

Hi, my name is Johnny I don’t post here often, but i do frequent the forums on here.

I need help figuring out a few things. Since it will be my first meet I don’t know how things are run. Do I warm up like a typical training day do my stretches, plyos, etc then just go in and do my bench, deads, and squats?

Also I was looking into USPA because they’re holding a meet literally 15mins away from me 2 months from now so I wanted to enter it for my first time no traveling and such. I was under the impression from everything i’ve looked up that USPA is no drug tested, but when I received the form today it said the raw division is tested. I am currently running 400mg of test and wouldn’t pass and wouldn’t want to compete in a tested organization out fairness anyway… but where the disconnect for me is that every where I look they say it’s untested.

If you guys have any input please help out thank you.

I don’t know whether USPA is tested or not but if the form says its tested I would think that it is. If your using than my suggestion would be to skip it otherwise your right your not competing by the fairness of the rules. Just my 2 cents, others will most likely have a different opinion.

As for your other question, there is generally quite a bit of time in between your squat bench and DL attempts. Most will do some general warm up (same as they would before training, dont change things up too much from training) and then begin warming up for their squats, after their squat attempts there will be time to ensure you are warmed up for the Bench, and then after your bench attempts there is time to warm up for the DL. Hope that helps.

I know of some people that are “on” that lift uspa because they have less stringent drug testing policies. From what I have heard, and I don’t know this for fact, as long as you aren’t advertising that you’re taking steroids they don’t test you. Maybe someone else with first hand knowledge will chime in.

As far as warm ups go. I usually foam roll and do dynamic stuff. I don’t do static stretching unless absolutely necessary on meet day. Then when I do my warm ups I do half of what I would do when training(ie a plate jump at a time instead of plate,quarter,plate). When squatting I do and empty bar and 135 for 5+ reps buy after that 3 or less reps. Once close to your opener just singles. I don’t know how others feel about this but DON’T do your opener in the warmup room. I’ve seen it done and I don’t understand it. Your opener should be something you can hit any day of the week no need to do it before you’re on the platform. . You don’t get an award for highest opening lift.

Also the order goes squat/bench/Deadlift. You’ll warm up for each lift before you do that lift.

Thanks so much that gives me a little bit more of a feel for it. I just really want to compete there and the next in state one isn’t for very long time. I guess I might have to do some traveling. Also I sent a email back to the person running it asking if the USPA organization was tested probably not the smartest idea.

And on the note of people being on while competing I noticed that Dan Green holds the world record there at 220. Does that mean that beast of a man is natty haha…

Okay sorry to post again, but I just did more research and looked into other meets held by USPA so I have discovered they don’t test some meets and the meet i’m planning to enter is for some reason tested. And it does specify that “raw divisions in this meet” so I guess the key words are “in this meet”.

So I don’t get why you would only test sometimes. Is it up to the person or state running the meet or is it up to the organization? I mean it just doesn’t make for good over all representation if you only test some of the meets either test or don’t test…

You might find this article helpful:

I don’t know that much about the USPA but just a thought is if you are simply competing to see what you can do and don’t care about placing you can enter the equipped division (which I am assuming is untested) and simply lift raw, there is no rule that says you must wear a shirt or whatever. Obviously how you place will be affected but that saves you the hassle of finding another meet and you aren’t trying to lift in a tested division this way.

Generally start warming up about 30 minutes before you think you will really lift. Assume it takes people 1 minute to lift per attempt, that means flights of 15 lifters take about 45 minutes to complete. This will help you get the timing down. Good luck with it, once you start it is a pretty awesome sport


I suggest having two friends or handlers at the meet. If you have none, make some friends. People are extremely nice at meets. One handler will help deal with your gear, get you water, helping you decide what your 2nd and 3rd attempts will be and tell you how many lifters are ahead of you. If this person is experienced enough he or she can help you with the timing of your warmups, as it varies in different meets due to how many lifters there are. The second handler will just take pictures and help out the 1st handler.

Of course if you don’t have this, just make sure how far you are out. Usually they will call stuff like _____ 3 out or 4 out. Then there’s In the hole means you’re two out and then there’s on deck, means you are up next after whoever is on the platform. If you are wrapping yourself, i suggest you wrap when you’re in the hole or three out. Afterwards, do not get all psyched, keep in mind to walk over to whoever’s dealing with the attempts and tell them your next attempt. You’re usually given a minute to do so. DO NOT FORGET. I almost did.

As for how to warmup, bring a foam roller and roll till everything is nice and loose. I’m not a fan of static stretching before lifting but to each their own. And speaking of that, everyone has a different warmup style with the lifts. Someone who squats 500 will take longer to warmup than someone who squats 300. But I think the guidelines that Tim Henriques pointed out works for most.

The USPA is not drugtested AFAIK. I’m not sure who decides but from what I’ve been told USPA doesn’t drug-test. If it’s a small meet and you’re not breaking world records I don’t see why they would drug test every single athlete. That is a major punch in their budget. However don’t take my word for it. You can also just go in an untested division like it has already been said.

Good luck and have fun.