I was in my first powerlifting meet yesterday. I hesitate to call it a competition; I pulled less weight than anyone. Well, except the guy that bombed out on his three benchpress attempts and didn’t get to finish.
And I finally get the concept of only competing against yourself. I never understood it when golfers talked about it. And to be fair, I’m pretty sure a number of them (golfers and powerlifters) care a lot more about competing with the other participants than it being only about beating your best. But, I’m really not worried about the low weight, or my missed third attempt on bench. In fact, I’m really proud I tried for the 115# BP. I’ve never been able to do it in the gym before with the pause, & I was feeling really good. And maybe I could have gotten it if I was just a bit slower. But I actually tried something that had a goodly chance of failure ….. In front of a bunch of people.
Because nobody wanted me to miss. It wasn’t a competition at that moment; not against each other anyway. Just me and the bar. And everyone got it.
And now I have numbers. A very clear place from which to improve. To measure progress. I was impressed by a lot of people yesterday. But I don’t remember their numbers. Just their resolve.
Me. The bar. It’s so simple that it’s hard to understand how I didn’t get it before. But I do now. And that’s progress too….
At the outset of the year, I decided that I wanted to improve, but resolutions were not exactly for me. But I did want to think about what was IMPORTANT for me, and keep those at the forefront whenever possible. My list:
They aren’t fully formed resolutions: Just things that were important to consider. And they were about balance. Controlling food but not being compassionate to myself, for example, would not be a ‘win’.
Anyway, I was being a bit scared about the upcoming meet, and one of the Mavens referred to something that reminded me to check my list. My fear is allowed a voice: she is trying to protect me. So I should have compassion for myself, and not be embarrassed that I am afraid. But it won’t decide.
We tested squats and deads today. Did squat testing Saturday too, but we shall not discuss it.
Anyway: Jerimiah let me try his knee sleeves. And it felt really good. 155# squat, but here’s the good part: TO DEPTH!!! Needless to say: I just bought a pair.
And deadlift: 185#.
Add that up to Bench from a week ago, and we are at 450#. 52# off his BAM (bare-ass-minimum) for the July 9th meet. You’ll notice I switched from we/our to HIS on that one. I think he has a bit of over optimism there. Anyway…. it’s closer than I thought I’d be by now, so… maybe the truth is somewhere in the middle, as usual.
Testing again Wednesday, and then I travel and am gymless for 2 weeks!
Yesterday we tested bench and squats. A difficult 105# and a failed 135#. I can’t get depth. Anyway, the real point is that while I can’t be happy about the outcome….I was happy. Just… Happy. Endorphins. Knowing I did something for me. Whatever. But the result was not just because of the result (if you follow).
Anyway, then we went to move my mom into the retirement home. The results, at least to our target, were good. She’s set up. And yet we had a really horrible day.
Feeling all of the feels … And they all seem illogical. But they aren’t. My “why” for the retirement home set up is the desire to see my mom happy and safe. And while we did the tasks, the “why” is open. Safe, but not happy. It will come, tho.
My “why” for lifting is not just to lift heavy shit. That’s the task equivalent. The “why” is to challenge myself, push my boundaries, learn more about how I work , invest in my well-being and to demand progress of myself.
So you can’t judge success by checking off the tasks. And if you try, you’ll may be left thinking that you should feel differently than you do …..to have accomplished what you planned but remain unsatisfied. And that would be the saddest success of all.
I did my first session of programming towards meet prep lat night. It was intense. I thought I’d already been working hard, but this was a new level….
And I feel good. The targets we set forb the meet seem high, but with an apparent plan for increased intensity…. suddenly it feels less scary.
We also talked about making weight. I am about 15 overweight yet. I am not aiming for super-lean, but around 27% body fat would be good. I’m not trending down fast enough, but Jerimiah figures with the increased intensity, I’ll see better traction there as well. We’ll keep an eye on that over the next few weeks and see if we have to modify the caloric balance.