T Nation

Mind Over Matter


hey all, ive just revently gotten to the point in my lifts that my weights are over 200lbs, ive been able to lift them but i find it takes me a few tries just to get my head away from the amount of weight im lifting and just do it. any experianced lifters have any tips on how to in a way ignore the amount and just lift, cause i find that event he amounts i can lift give me pause before i do them


Over load training.
Reverse Bands
Lock outs
Rack Pulls
Things like that.

This lets you use a ton of weight more than you normally could. This makes you feel stronger, boost confidence, and males the normal weight your used to feel light in your hands or on your back.

Oh and man up… That helps.


[quote]Forcesguy wrote:
any experianced lifters have any tips on how to in a way ignore the amount and just lift, cause i find that event he amounts i can lift give me pause before i do them[/quote]
It depends a little on what exercise you’re talking about (bench vs dead vs squat vs curl or row or whatever), but I’d either use mental cues to remind yourself that, in the grand scheme of things, 200 pounds isn’t all that much for a 240-pound man to be lifting, so just fricking do it. You can also remind yourself of the tens of hundreds of men who’ve lifted heavier than you. If they can manage to lift two, three, or four times what you’re about to, then you can handle your business.

More practically/less mentally, try loading the bar with different plates. Instead of two 45s, try a 45, a 25, a 10, and a pair of 5s. You might feel silly, but it should look like less. You could also try some overloaded lockouts kinda like Reed mentioned.

After your general warm-up and before any real work sets, load a bit more than your heaviest weight on the bar and just unlock it (this obviously depends on the exercise), hold it for a 3-5 count and then rack it.

You’re basically tricking your brain into being like, “Okay good, I can pick up 250 pounds (or whatever) and not cave in, so let’s go kick 210’s ass.” I know there’ve been a few articles discussing this, but I’m actually drawing a blank on them. I want to say Poliquin, Thibaudeau, and/or Staley have talked about it before.

[quote]Reed wrote:
Oh and man up… That helps.[/quote]

And some related reading:


Sounds cheesey I know…but I think before my set, am I really gonna let a barbell and some piece of metal stand between my goals and I? Hell no


For me it is just putting it into perspective. Usually it is one of the following:

  1. Fear of failure.
  2. Fear of getting hurt.
  3. Fear of working hard.

So for (1), that is simply not an excuse. Don’t think anyone needs to elaborate on that. If you fail, you have an obvious goal to train for and in my opinion it keeps me focused when I do not succeed.

  1. If you got your form down and using a spotter or rack with safety pins. Sack up and move the weight. Shit happens of course, but if you train smart, this really shouldn’t be an issue.

  2. This pops into my head every once in awhile and I think I didn’t realize it for years, but I’m simply anticipating the way it is going to feel and how it might suck for a bit. However, it is never as bad as I make it out to be in my head.

Learning how to cope with fear and anxiety makes training hard much more fun. Simply put it in perspective and don’t make a big deal out of it.