Sunday, December 1, 2013

Competition: UQ Challenge 1 Dec 2013

Unlike the Iron Fest Open back in April, I didn't try water-cutting this time. If I were a couple kilos lighter already, I might have, but as I'd been sitting around the middle of my weight class, I saw no good reason for it. I weighed in at 70kg, on the dot, but not before some worries.

Weigh-in started at 8am; I arrived at about 8:45. I was immediately told that I'd been called up, and the word "piss" found its way into that memo. I can't remember what was said, so maybe they just meant that I should pee now and get any excess water out of my system before urinating, but as Powerlifting Australia is drug-tested, I put my name and piss together, and assumed some old people wanted to stare at me as I filled up a cup for them. Turns out this wasn't the case, and I was getting worried for nothing. For the record, I'm not worried about failing a drug test -- I'm clean, and if I were using steroids (which I must stress that I'm not), I think we can safely say they're not working, given how unremarkable my progress is. What does worry me about drug testing is the simple fact of having people watching me pee. I'd rather they take my saliva or blood or any other easily accessible bodily fluid. Heck, I think I'm more comfortable with the prospect of having someone checking out my prostate than I am with having to pee in front of someone.

Anyway, I didn't have to do a drug test this morning, or at any other time during the day. I enjoyed catching up with the other guys in my weight class, and meeting for the first time a lifter who I've been in contact with over youtube throughout the year.

And onto my lifts:


First Attempt: 140kg R
Second Attempt: 150kg R
Third Attempt: 155kg T

First attempt felt about the same as my squats the previous Monday, so not too flash. Second attempt was a major grinder, and I won't know until I see the footage (I assume there is footage), but it felt like I was twisting on the way up. I was surprised to get 3 white lights for it. Third attempt was a real wrestle, but alas an unsuccessful one. Just didn't have the strength in me that I had two weeks ago. So much for peaking :S

Bench Press

First Attempt: 85kg R
Second Attempt: 92.5kg R
Third Attempt: 97.5kg T

Ended up doing the exact same attempts I made last comp. 85kg felt great, and this time I remembered to wait for my calls. 92.5kg felt decent. 97.5kg turned out to be me biting off more than I could chew. If there's anything I can say as far as progress goes here, it's that the pause on the bench didn't feel as long drawn out as last comp (either meaning I'm getting better at stabilising the bar, or the judges were just more lenient), and I felt like I failed more elegantly on the last attempt -- no butt off the bench; just couldn't get it today.


First Attempt: 170kg R
Second Attempt: 185kg T
Third Attempt: 190kg R

First attempt felt better than my heavy deadlifts last Monday, and that was good for confidence.

Second attempt was funny. I thought that there was another lifter between me and the guy before me, so when I realised I was up (probably 30sec after they initially called out that the bar was loaded), I wasn't mentally ready. I rushed out onto the platform, forgetting to add chalk to my hands, and did the lift. The lift itself was great -- despite only residual chalk on my hands and being far from psyched up, the bar came up and it looked (from what I hear) about the same as 170kg. All great, right? Well, not according to the judges. See, my interpretation of the rules about lowering the bar is that if the bar's still in your hands when it hits the ground, it's all good. Now, I don't recall letting go of the bar prematurely, which suggests that the judges unanimously have a different interpretation of the rules.

Third attempt, like last comp, could have been heavier, from what I could tell. I actually suspected that I could go heavier before doing it, but that suspicion didn't arise until after the blood had returned to my head post-second-attempt, which did not happen until after I'd submitted my request to do 190kg.


Compared to last comp, my total's up 20kg (+7.5kg on squat, +0kg on bench press, and +12.5kg on deadlift). Last comp I got a gold medal. Did my increased strength lead to more gold today? Not even once. I went in knowing that unless something went wrong, I wasn't going to get a gold medal today, because of a certain weightlifter in my class who was going to be opening with more than my best. Knowing that I wasn't going to win actually took some pressure off, and consequently I enjoyed this meet a lot more than the last one. I did still take home a piece of metal, though, this time winning bronze in the 74kg weight class. That's two meets and two lumps of metal under my belt.

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