T Nation

Up a Weight Class? Maximum Neural Potential?

Hi! My first post here. Firstly thanks to everyone posting such useful information on this forum, it seems like a great place.

I’ve gotten into powerlifting in the last few months. Been training for a few years but typical story failed bodybuilding bulk/cut cycles, time off losing all progress etc etc.
I have my first regional competition next month. Almost certain to hit 1000lbs (165kg/105kg/185kg) at 74kg bodyweight, Under 23s (just). Looking around various results this seems to be the top end for 74kg Juniors on a regional level.

I’m going to be moving out of the Juniors category and in with the adults now anyway so it’ll be a while before I’m ‘competitive’ again. However, I’m just wondering if I should stay around 74kg for a while longer or not.

I’m pretty lean so I’m really at the maximum muscular potential for my height/bone structure. However I’m just wondering how much further strength could take my numbers?

I’m assuming that most people lifting significantly more in the 74kg class are shorter and bigger. Do I have any chance at all at making competitive numbers in 74kg at almost 5’9" or should I just move up? I am obviously a very average size. I am guessing 82kg would be my ‘final’ weight class if I stayed lean, which I intend to.

Whether you move up or not, I am sure you are not at your strength potential yet for your size.

Oh absolutely not haha! I’m just wondering how far I could take it - assuming most guys in 74kg are shorter and bigger I expect I would not make it to a very competitive level at all. I’d like to milk what I can at this level IF there is potential there, but at the same time don’t want to miss potentially much faster strength gains and better performance by avoiding putting on another stone.

[quote]Ecchastang wrote:
Whether you move up or not, I am sure you are not at your strength potential yet for your size. [/quote]

Concur with this. Don’t adjust your weight to increase your strength, increase your strength and let your weight do what it needs to do. Get as strong as you can get, find out how much you weigh, and compete at that weight class (or cut down, you get the idea).

Thinking in terms of “weight class” is foolish IMO for anyone not near the top of the sport, i.e. competing on an international level.

There are enough weight classes in powerlifting to enable you to be “competitive,” whatever that means to you, if you are strong. That means if you are legitimately strong, you will still dominate people on the local level even if you’re at the bottom end of a class.

Keeping weight down, or trying to be strategic with bodyweight, pulls the focus away from getting strong, which needs to be the sole focus. Decide how lean you want to be, or how much fat you’re willing to tolerate on your body, and then eat and train to be strong. Bodyweight shouldn’t be an issue for you for a long time. Talking about it at this stage is pretty silly.

Thanks fellas :slight_smile: Puts it in perspective how it needs to be! I’m very OCD and used to having very particular, long term plans for everything I do but I suppose that’s not the way to go here.