T Nation

Should I Encourage My GF to Compete?


I wasn't sure whether to post this here or the PW forum, but I thought this may be more appropriate. So basically my girlfriend weighs 115 lb and after about a year of off and on training she can already squat 175 for 4 and dl (i think) 155 for 4 (maybe more). She doesn't think it's anything special, but I think she should think about competing. Am I really naive, or do those sound like promising numbers for a female competitor in such a low weight class? I'm very impressed with her strength for her size considering she hasn't really done any raw strength training, just Cosgrove's New Rules of Lifting for Women. Her diet's far from excellent, too.

Thanks in advance for the feedback. I'm hoping to get some responses from a few of you who actually compete.


What does she bench?


I'm surprised she can't deadlift more if she can squat 175.

Encourage her if it seems like something she'd like to do. If she waits until she has 'big enough' numbers to compete, she probably never will.

My first meet, I didn't post huge numbers but I had a blast and everyone was really encouraging and helpful. It was exciting and fun and I couldn't wait to do it again.

Encourage her to try it for that reason. If she likes it, it's like a drug and the numbers will likely follow. Most new lifters don't walk in and make anyone sit up and take notice. They have fun and enjoy the experience.


I don't think she's ever tried barbell bench, but I think she usually handles around 35s on db press for the 5 rep range. So for 1RM on bench...probably 85-95-ish??? I know this will be her weakest link.


encourage her to try it. if she likes it, cool. if not don't push her.


Why the concern about numbers, as if there is some minimum requirement to enter? If she has an interest, jump into the game and don't bomb. Fuck numbers for the first time out. The ride home it will be fairly clear if she's hooked or not.


Those were just for reference. She tells me her favorite part of lifting is getting stronger, so I think she'd really enjoy adding a competitive aspect to it. When I brought the idea up about competing, she seemed like she'd enjoy doing it, but didn't think she was "there" yet, and wanting more time to get comfortable with lifting heavy.

It's good to hear that it's such a friendly community though.


btw, biglifter...you look great for 91 years old!


Newsflash. We're never "there". Lift, have fun, learn, get better every year.

Squats and milk. That's how you can be 91 and look like a 25 year old hot chick.


91, damn! She doesn't look a day over 110.


I think I've pretty much told her the same at some point.

Squats and milk? Now it makes sense...and here I thought you were lying about your age...


You can trust me to be honest. I'm from the internet.


Have you ever competed? If not I would just find a meet and then both of you can go to your first meet together. It's pretty cheap to get started in raw lifting.

Is this something she has shown intrest in? Personally I wouldn't push her. If she want's to compete she will, if not you can't make her do it with any hope of success. I know what it's like to see potential in someone as a powerlifter, but if the drive isn't there they will never be successful at it. All successful powerlifters have a desire to get stronger if that isn't there it can't be manufactured.



She has to want to do it, but if she does, I think you and her will find that people at meets are in general very nice and encouraging.

With regards to the squat and deadlift numbers, make sure she's squatting to proper depth. Most women her size (my wife is a 52kg lifter, so 114 lbs) deadlift significantly more than they squat. If she's squatting 175 for 4 reps below parallel, I'd expect her to be deadlifting in the 250 range at least - unless she has really short arms, but that seems unlikely since you say bench is her weakest lift.


I have not competed. What I've gathered from this forum is that it'd be a good idea to take her out to a meet as spectators first, see how she responds and let her decide of she really would enjoy it. Obviously, I'll support her either way.

She has not shown a particular interest in powerlifting, because she's new to lifting and didn't even know it was out there. What I do know, though, is that she'll call me on the phone after each of her workouts excited whenever she hits a new PR...so the desire to get stronger is definitely there. Plus, she has the competitive edge that comes with being in such a low weight class.

Thanks for the input.