Since I’m just coming off a meet, this week’s training may not be particularly interesting, so I figured I’d start off with a little “The Story So Far” section, outlining my previous two meet cycles and the thought processes that went into each of them.
I won’t detail every workout of my previous cycles, partly because that would make for too much “fluff” for this log, and partly because the templates for these cycles were taken directly from Jim Wendler’s Beyond 5/3/1 book. So if you want those programs, just buy the damn book! But I will list my final training maxes along with selected attempts.
Meet #1: Long Island InsurreXtion - 5/3/1 Strength Challenge
I was just coming off a disappointing open track meet and was trying to figure out what I was going to do for fall training. In the program following my track meet I hit a squat PR (the first time in a while that I got a new 1RM in the gym) which got me thinking. I had also just recently acquired Beyond 5/3/1 and was looking through the programs.
On a whim, I checked Powerlifting Watch and found a meet in Long Island. I checked the RPS web site and saw that the New York State Amateur Raw Classic Open records for all lifts in the 132-pound weight class were vacant, so I decided on a whim to give it a shot. I did have the full 12 weeks to prepare, so I chose the 5/3/1 Strength Challenge to prepare for my first meet. I should note that I started this program with 85% Training Maxes (instead of the usual 90%) as the weights do get much heavier later on in the program.
Final Training Maxes
Deadlift: 335 (I based my training maxes off a rep max - 350 was my best single pulling sumo, however.)
Bench: 195 (I hadn’t tested a paused 1RM before this cycle so this number was based off a touch-and-go max of 220. Singles were all do-able but reps were tough.)
My goals for the meet were to simply set 5 lb. PRs to each of my best gym 1RMs, and I used 85% of that goal for openers and 92.5% for planned 2nd attempts.
I overshot my weight cut more than I’d like (weighed in at 127.4), but had no problem getting back up to 140, even though much of my time the day before the meet was spent in a tire shop (I had a flat tire the night before weigh-ins and had to drive to weigh-ins on a spare). Yes, I know people don’t recommend cutting weight for your first meet, but I was going for a record, damnit!
1st Attempt: 275 - Good!
2nd Attempt: 300 - Good!
3rd Attempt: 325 - This was a real grinder, but I stood up with it. Unfortunately I saw two red lights - Gene said I was “just at parallel” - just needed a little more to reach depth.
1st Attempt: 190 - Flew up easily, but it officially went down as a Miss as I racked it at the same time as the “Rack” command. I knew I could do more and was going to go for 210, but since this was a miss I didn’t want to go up too high and risk bombing out.
2nd Attempt: 200 - Good! Still easy, and I held it longer just to make sure I didn’t beat the “Rack” command this time.
3rd Attempt: 225 - Miss. Since I had a good number on the board I had figured I’d go for a PR, but this was the one attempt that I looked like I had no business taking.
1st Attempt: 300 - Good. Felt a little slow, so I went for 325 instead of 330.
2nd Attempt: 325 - Good. Much easier than the opener.
3rd Attempt: 355 - Good! A real grinder but I made it!
The “first meet nerves” probably affected my squat more than they should have - I was going down slowly and trying to “feel” depth rather than attacking the hole aggressively. I also learned I needed to work on holding the bar at lockout longer - don’t want to beat a “Rack” command again, lol!
The more recent meet write-up will be in the next post.