Friday, September 2, 2011

Seriously, It's September?!

End of Week Training Update
Bench went well on Thursday, i was really happy with this session. The plan called for 5 x 5 @ 110. I went in thinking I'd pause sets 1, 3, and 5, and go touch&go on 2 and 4. I quickly changed my mind on that ;)

Bench - 5 x 5(ish) @ 110

Happy with a good pause on at least the first 3 reps of sets 1 - 4.
On sets 4 and 5 the spot I got was just the tiiiiiniest bit of assistance through the sticking point, then hands off again.

Next week, I'll advance set one to 112 and go for all paused reps, then go back to 110 for the other 4 sets since I'm not quite ready to move on yet.

On to squats! Up to 135 for 5 x 5 on squats and they felt easier and better than ever. I do have one set on video but it's not so helpful so we'll skip it today. RC commented that it was my best squat session so far, that's promising, since squat is his thang. I did well keeping my elbows down and breathing through the squat...I'm excited to see where I can take this the next few weeks!

I've also identified a tremendous strength difference between my right and left quad. My right knee is the one that's frequently messed up, so maybe that explains the difference, but it is VERY pronounced. I'll be spending the next several weeks also trying to correct that.

On Another Front
Mentally struggling a bit with the food/weight thing this week. That's probably an understatement, but...I'm still trying to sort through it all and also I made an agreement with myself today, that the freaking out could resume if I still felt like a crazy person on TUESDAY. Until then...we're trying to chill out over here, and trying not to over-react and make any drastic changes. This morning (before the agreement with myself), I almost called Christie in a panic, but I calmed down and will just leave my already scheduled appointment where it is (9/14). I have to learn to deal with this. I guess that's is for the next few days anyway!

And Another One
Not a lot of news to share on the job front...a few leads, but nothing of substance, and no interviews...yet!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

No Letting Up!

Meet Results
Saturday - what an amazing day! All the prep - training, nutrition, visualization...all of it came together for those three minutes worth of lifting. It really is amazing to look at everything that is done in preparation versus the time spent on the platform, but honestly - it is such a rush it is totally worth it.

The day went on considerably longer than expected, but I was still pumped when it was finally time to start warming up! When the flights were posted I was a HAPPY girl to see my name listed *seventh* in the flight of 10 people (mixed men & women). Lifting order is determined by the amount of weight being lifted. Typically, I'm first - opening with the lightest attempt of the group. Seventh was pretty hot, I think I even opened after one of the guys :)

Warm-ups felt a little rusty, but went along as planned.  On my last warm-up (a single at 250), my foot slipped a little on the platform and threw me off a bit. It wasn't a big deal, but being slightly out of position made the lift feel heavier than it should have. I think I allowed that to get to me a little more than I should have, it's hard to say whether it was from that, or the fact that I haven't been on a platform in nearly 9 months that was causing the crazy butterflies in the pit of my stomach waiting for my opening attempt!

I opened as planned with 286.6lbs and it went up! The video makes it look smooth and easy, but to me it felt almost disastrously heavy! It made me uncomfortable with the plan I'd worked hard on going into the meet...I was unsure of myself. As a result, I dropped my 2nd attempt from a planned 314lbs to 308lbs and then went back to the warm-up room to try to get my head back in the game! In the warm-up room, Thomas (my new friend and videographer that day!) asked how it felt, I said it was heavier than I wanted it to be...he offered me my camera to watch the video.  Didn't look so bad, but I would have liked to see it go faster!

Second attempts time and I knew that I had to go out there strong...reminded myself how 308 is nothing...easily done in training, no problem just go get it! Again it went up and, although it felt smoother than the 286, it felt overly heavy again! I thought I had my head on straight but here's when the doubt really started to seep in...I was saying/seeing 340 over and over in my head, but the feel of that 308 was fresh in my was hard to fight.

I had to put my 3rd attempt in...I stood their unsure (aggravating the hell out of the attempt keeper - I don't know what that position is officially called, so we'll go with "attempt keeper" and call it good ;) just looking at my options. It's tough not having someone there to help keep you focused and provide feedback on the lifts! Doubt...ugh...I caved and gave her 150kg/330.7lbs.  What? Really?!  Yeah - I really did!

Fortunately, it was loud and she started yelling at someone else to hurry up and give her their next attempt when I finally told her mine, and she didn't hear me. "Huh?" she said, and in that split second, I really DID get my head on straight and remembered what I went there to do and I changed it...152.5kg/336.2lbs - YEAH! Now I just had to do it...

Back in the warm-up room, Thomas offered me my camera again to watch the 2nd lift. I wasn't sure I wanted to see it, based on how it felt, but I played it back and was amazed! It went right looked nothing like it felt. That's great feedback! When I saw that, it all came together for me. I knew that the 336 was happening, but I'd have to go out there and totally attack it, just own it.  All my strength...everything I had.  YEAH!!

Finally came down to it...I went out there, I took my time setting up, deep breath then...ATTACK! I fought it, I owned it, I won it! What a rush!!!

Here are all three lifts:

Back in the warm-up room, I was shaking like crazy. A few people came up to me to congratulate me on that pull and I commented how much I was shaking. Someone explained to me - "you released so much adrenaline during that pull, THAT'S what is making you shake like that!" ;)  It's the greatest high...I wish i could bottle it and share it with you...

So that's it, in a very large nutshell :)  I took first place in the 148's open women, raw division and Powerlifting Watch posted this on Monday - it was awesome to find there and read where that puts me in the standings!

Back in the Game!
Yesterday I was right back in the gym working on my overhead press, and today was back to deads and my modified/hybrid 5x5 and 5-3-1 programming.

Yesterday - Shoulders
5 x 5 Seated BB Press @ 62lbs
3 x 10 Seated DB Press (one-arm) @ 25lbs
4 x 8 Seated DB Lateral Raises (first 3 sets w/ fwd lean) @ 10lbs
3 x 15 Face Pulls @ 70lbs
3 x 10 Cable Crunch @ 120lbs
3 x 15 Wtd Decline Sit-ups @ 25lbs
25 mins Elliptical

Today - Back
5 x 5 Sumo Deadlifts @ 255lbs
3 x 8-10 Low Row (Hammer) @ 45, 55, 60lbs
4 x 8-10 Close Grip Lat Pulldown @ 70, 75, 80, 70lbs
1 meager half-way up pull-up ;)

Tomorrow is off, just some cardio tomorrow.  It'll feel went *really* well, but I could sense I wasn't totally recovered from Saturday.

Raphael has pointed out to me in the past that my focus tends to drop after the powerlift, I couldn't argue with him. Yesterday and today both I felt a shift in that, after Saturday I feel like I've got a renewed sense of hunger and I want more! I asked him today to continue to point that out to me if he senses it again, because I'm bringing my freaking A game to that meet in letting up!

This is the face of no letting up!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Ready: Mind & Body!

Today was weigh-in day before the big event tomorrow. I was all ready and feeling good about what was to be a nice, calm, drama-free weigh-in. When I left my house at 9am this morning, I was 147.2. Allllll kinds of wiggle room for a cut-off of 148.7 (earlier today I mistakenly thought it was 148.6).

I confidently and comfortably made the hour drive, walked in, stripped down (undies/sports bra) and at about 10:30am, hopped on the scale! *Drum roll* aaaaand.....wait, huh?! 149.0! UNREAL! Are you kidding me? to the car, or, what I'm now calling my portable sauna! 90 degrees outside, August, mid-day in Florida with the windows rolled up and the heat on nuclear blast. A few minutes later (25 fairly excruciating minutes to be exact, only made bearable by the entertaining text conversation I was having with a few friends)I went back in to try again (I only had until 11:30 to gitrdone, else I'd have to either weigh in to the next weight class or continue to starve until 7pm tonight -- no thanks).

Stripped down...this time to sweat-soaked sports bra and undies ("oh sexayyy giiiiiirlllfrennnnnd!"), hopped on and closed my eyes! 148.5 - *phew*

So much for drama-free! No matter, UNDER the wire - I made it! Just another one for the lesson books!

I ate quickly after that, a giant banana and a protein shake, plus two bottles of water. I've continued to refuel & rehydrate myself the rest of the day, and now I'm feeling READY.

I've got a packing list prepared for tomorrow, and everything is packed that can be packed already, and I know what food and protein and other supplement concoctions I'm bringing along. iPod and camera are charging!

Mentally I'm totally in the game...visualization complete! I can feel the weight of the bar, I know what to expect from it and I can see myself completing the lift...I know how it feels at the top when I finally pull it through and lock it out! Physically I know I've trained and prepared hard, I know I'm ready for it, and I know I'm eating right.

The plan:
Wake-up, eat something.
Get dressed, pack up and head out for pancakes, mmmm. Should eat this meal around 9:15
Make the hour drive up to Port St Lucie, arrive by 11
Warm-ups: 5x135, 3x185, 1x225, 1x250
First Attempt (confirmed, meet is in Kilos): 130kg / 286.6lbs
Second Attempt: 142.5kg / 314.2lbs
Third Attempt (depending on feel of 2nd): 152.5kg (336.2lbs) or 155kg (341.7lbs)

All this prep...three lifts, three minutes tops! Totally worth it.