It has now been a week since the European Championship in King’s Lynn, UK. Since I came back many friends, colleagues and other powerlifters asked me what I did for preparation and also what my game plan was to break two European records (Squat and Deadlift), win a gold medal in my category and achieve three personal bests. So I thought I write a blog about it.
As written in a previous blog, Nutrition – Strong, Simple and Sustainable to get stronger I not only train four times a week, I also eat nutritious food, try to get seven hours of good quality sleep and ensure that I take rest days also.
After having competed in 11 powerlifting competitions, including 5 international ones, there are 3 rules I follow:
Rule 1: Prepare, prepare, prepare
There are no shortcuts in training – ensure that your technique is spot on, in accordance with the rules of your powerlifting association. Ensure that you regularly practice your main lifts, but also do plenty of auxiliary work, to strengthen the supporting muscles.
Rule 2: Know your personal best (PB)
For me, a PB is has to be achieved in perfect form and in accordance with the rules of your powerlifting association, not a lift that is grinded out, almost injuring myself in the lifting process.
Rule 3: Pick your competition lifts wisely – don’t let your ego get in the way
Picking your lifts depends on your PB – but also on your form on the day.
1st lift – the opener. This lift gets you in the game. I have learned that I need to calm my nerves first, and show the judges that I know what I’m doing. So my first lift is one that I can to twice in a row, after a late night out or when sick.
2nd lift –getting serious. Now that you are in the game, you have completed a successful 1st lift, this is a lift that should be a little challenging, but you should have successfully completed it before it in a previous competition. If you have not competed before, choose a lift that you can do once in perfect form.
3rd lift – push out the boat. Trust in your training. If you have trained regularly, focusing on your main lifts, your technique and auxiliary work, everything should be in place now for your biggest lift. This is your moment; the reason you came for. But listen to your body when lifting, if something is off, led the weight go.
Overall – don’t get distracted by what other lifters lift. Powerlifting is a sport where you first and foremost compete against yourself. Of course it is nice to win and break records. But my advice is to leave this for your third lift, when you have already two good lifts under your belt (excuse the pun) and are confident and ready to show them all what for are made of.
In the European Championship I lifted as follows:
- Squat: 92.5 kg. 97.5 kg 105.5 kg (ER)
- Bench: 42.5 kg, 45.0 kg, 47.5 kg
- Deadlift: 122.5 kg, 132.5kg, 137.5 kg (ER)