Indeed, going for a max attempt usually requires more thought put into the ramp up. 40 lbs is also quite ambitious - doable of course but aggressive for us mortals. However, props for giving it a go. The ambition can often be a good thing, especially at a meet.
I think pull ups are a good lift to do on deadlift day to decompress the spine. I read it here somewhere and my chiro also told me that.
On your box squats, are you doing actual box squats or using the box/bench as a depth guide?
Congratz on the PR's DZ. They're awesome. I am with you, doing well thought out rep work will definitely make you stronger. Those darn maxes are hard to resist tho! I used to turn almost every session into a heavy one because of that. Not a good thing for me.
My Favorite Part Of Lifting Is Having The Opportunity
Meet PR's: (May 2014)
Squat 475 lbs
Bench: 275 lbs
Deadlift: 501 lbs
Total: 1251 lbs
Squat: 495 lbs
Bench: 295 lbs
Deadlift: 515 lbs
Total: 1305 Lbs