Getting Fit and Strong For Competition & Life
Preparations for a powerlifting contest and reconditioning my body to be in top shape.
Powerlifting and a high fitness level have been a major focus in my life for 25 years. Injuries for the last 2 years and life have interfered with me competing but I’m gearing up mentally and physically again.
I’m 48 years old and planning on competing this summer sometime around my birthday near the end of July. I’ll need the next 4 to 5 months to get my strength up to the levels I want to compete at.
Since I began lifting in powerlifting competitions in the Masters (Over 40 years old category), I have maintained a high U.S. ranking in the 220 lbs weight class.
Currently, I hold the #6 and #12 (Powerlifting Watch) [2 different meets] ranking for highest squat in the U.S. Master’s Raw 220 lbs weight class with a 625 lbs squat. I did this respectively about 8 and 6 years ago but the record still holds. My ranking used to be higher but a few lifters have surpassed my efforts over the years.
My goal is to get back to squatting 625 lbs again and lift greater poundages. Two years ago I squatted 615 lbs in a Raw United powerlifting competition but that organization doesn’t exist any longer.
Here I am recently training the squat using 425 lbs for 3 reps in competition form:
Two other lifts are part of a full powerlifting competition: the bench press and the deadlift.
My bench press has always been my weak spot so I will be working to get my poundage up for this category. My highest bench in competition was 385 lbs.
A powerlifting competition bench press is done with a pause on the chest, usually lasting for about 1 second and a judge will command you to lift when they verify you’ve stabilized the bar. Competition bench pressing is tough.
I’ve experienced injuries this past year with my right arm and shoulder. My benching poundages have greatly decreased but with dedication and careful training progress, I should be able to get to a 315 lbs pause bench by my birthday.
Perhaps in 2 years, I will be up near my previous 385 lbs bench or even 400 lbs should all training go well. This is a goal I’m visualizing and meditating on.
Finally, there is the deadlift. One must grab a barbell and lift it to an erect position without hitching(jerking) or dragging the bar up the legs then lower the barbell under control.
My best deadlift to date is 625 lbs but presently I’m only doing 455 lbs. My goal for my next powerlifting competition will be to match my squat somewhere around 550 lbs or slightly bigger.
I apologize for the lack of a bench press or deadlift video but in the future, I will provide training footage to display my efforts.
Mind training and goal setting.
The scoop on getting mentally ready to achieve.
The mental aspects of athletic competition are often overlooked by those outside of the contest. But, I use mental exercises every day to guide my training and outlook for competing.
Visualization during meditation before sleep is one of my valuable tools. Imagining, in detail, completing the next higher weight in progression for each lift helps in achieving each step forward.
I use visualization for lifting and for any goal I aspire to. But, I learned this method 25 years ago for powerlifting. Seeing yourself complete an activity in your mind helps to translate to successfully completing the desired outcome in reality.
In essence, you’ve already been successful.
Getting the mind focussed on living to optimize physical performance is another aspect. Being centered on diet, rest, therapy, mobility, and energy expenditure allowing for training all factor into my mindset.
Hell, I even have to make time to write and run my landscaping business!
I haven’t even touched on supplementation and my research behind finding legal legitimate aids to aid in athletic performance. Real supplementation works and assists hard work in the gym but they are not magic concoctions or act the same way or to the same extent as steroids.
I am drug-free (steroid free) and recommend to everyone to stay away from steroids. Health and safety are primary concerns and a great reason to keep away from performance-enhancing drugs.
In a future story, I will discuss my supplementation and how it helps me. Just to give a hint my favorites are Ribose, TMG, Creatine, Cissus Quadrangularis, Taurine, Glutamine, Acetyl L-Carnitine, and Beta Alanine. There are more I take. All work great for me in building and maintaining strength, endurance, recovery, and endurance.
I take no medications and have no health issues besides arthritis so I am able to take supplements without worrying about harmful drug interactions with any medication. Using some of the medications also have great health benefits.
This is a picture of two individuals doing deadlifts.
Goal setting and taking action on your desire are some of the greatest lessons I have learned from powerlifting and competing. The process for building and maintaining powerlifting strength is rewarding and challenging.
Great inner focus and giving everything I have inside are vital key points powerlifting has taught me. Such intense habit forming character building has translated to my life in work, learning, relationships, and integrity.
Please join me and read as I report on my journey toward my next powerlifting meet.
All information, content, and material of this story is for informational purposes only and are not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician or healthcare provider.
Information regarding supplement use and powerlifting are only regarding my personal use and experience. Please consult a qualified physician before considering engaging in powerlifting or taking supplements.