Training week in review – beginning of the end

This week marks the beginning of my last 4-week training cycle for the Twin Ports Raw Open meet on June 11th. I must admit it didn’t begin well – I got a head cold and decided NOT to train Monday and Tuesday to recover my body and begin my final training cycle training refreshed. This meant I had to figure out how to get my training in Wednesday through Saturday, knowing I had a graduation to attend Friday night. So training on Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday it was.

Day 1: Deadlifts

Lovely Wednesday Deadlifts. We all know I love deadlifts. And that I have a pretty specific goal in mind (400 pounds). I have had some ups and downs during this training cycle but I’m going out on a limb to say it’s picking up for the better now.

My session this week ROCKED! I don’t know if it was the extra time between training sessions (Saturday to Wednesday) or the extra sleep I’ve been allowing myself but I was able to confidently pull 330 pounds for 5 sets of 2. And after that I did some rack pulls (deadlifts with a raised bar) at 365 pounds so I could practice my lock out and feel that weight in my hands. It was heavy but I was confident.

I’d say I’m coming along nicely for my next meet even if I don’t reach the 400 pound mark quite yet.

Day 2: Bench

Thursday was Bench day. What can I say about my bench press? Being positive I can say that I haven’t lost anything for the upcoming meet even though I’ve been battling a shoulder twinge for much of this training cycle.

This week I was able to press 155 pounds – not the best but not the worst. The presses themselves looked pretty good so my plan is to keep working technique and pushing the bar up. I should be able to beat my meet PR (160 pounds) and I’ll be happy with that. I’ll pick up more specific bench training for October to help improve that number but for now I’ll be happy not back sliding.

Day 3: Squats

Saturday SQUATS! I’m excited about my squat progress so far and this week I hit a new gym PR: 295 pounds! Not far from my goal of 300, so who knows – I may go for a big PR at the meet.

Training was working up to 9 RPE (meaning I could probably crank out one more rep if I had to) and that took forever! Forty minutes. And I still had the 3×3 at 265 pounds that I had to get through to call my primary lifting complete. PLUS the accessory movements that help me get stronger (remember those Anderson Squats? I got to do more of those as well as some other fun stuff). Saturday open hours at the gym are 10am – 11am. I was able to convince one of the coaches to let me come in at 9:30 and I finally left at 11:30. The coaches are pretty awesome to let me overstay open hours (plus the yoga class enjoyed some of my heckling).

So overall the beginning of the end is going well. I’m proud of the consistency I’ve put in at the gym and the progress I’ve made. To some it may seem like small potatoes but to me it’s just the beginning.

Next up: picking my lift attempt weights. I’ve already had a dream where I was at the meet and hadn’t done it yet and had no idea what to lift. I think this is the powerlifting version of the “being unprepared for a major test” dream.

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