Paul, what’s the biggest hurdle/mistake (gym, nutrition, recovery) you have had/made during your training career and how did you deal with it ?
For one I’d have to say that near the end of my powerlifting career I got way too fat. The mentality of “get your weight up” and gaining weight to get more poundage on the bar at all costs was REALLY dumb, and counter productive. Funny enough, I hit some PR’s during my recomp weighing 30-40 pounds less.
It’s true, you do get some leverage advantages as you get heavier, but like most things there’s a point of diminishing returns with it. Few guys will heed this message if they have set out on a similar path of “more plates on the bar at all costs” and that’s fine. I see a lot of guys I used to compete with now that are having to lose weight due to poor and/or declining health. So I was at least smart enough to be ahead of the curve before that started happening.
I think not doing enough proper support work for quads during those same years is one. I finally had to sit down and figure out why I kept tearing something in my lower body. Wow, I wasn’t doing enough direct quad work. I was squatting 605 for reps (no belt, no wraps) low bar, but when I figured out I needed direct quad work, I remember barely being able to hack squat 3 plates on each side. That was humbling. Once my hack squat came up, I ended up hitting a fairly easy 660 squat in the gym. And had no more issues with strains.