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Old 08-06-2012, 12:19 PM   #1
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Default Powerlifting - Your first meet

Starting this thread for the powerlifters in this forum to share their experience, especially of their first meets, lessons learnt, etc. I hope this will be of help to potential newbies who, one day, are planning to get on the platform for their first meet.

Bodybygamma started a similar thread for strongman competitions, which, I thought had some pretty useful information, especially for folks like us who have never been in a strongman training gym, let alone a competition, and whose only exposure to strongman contests were the WSM events on TV.

Here's the link to the stickied strongman thread too, if anyone is interested -
http://muscleandbrawn.com/forums/pow...ould-know.html

Specific information, like tips on peaking, your style of warming up on the meet day, choosing starting weights for the lifts etc will be much appreciated.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:21 PM   #2
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Good thread.

Tip...get there a day or two early. Settle in, relax, get some rest, check out the venue. Get a feel for where the action will take place, so you can remove all the "metal possibilities" from your mind and relax a bit more.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:25 PM   #3
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Tip...you're going to drink a lot more water than you think.

You might want to take some whey protein and/or BCAA powder so you replenish some of the lost nutrients, stave off hunger, and have something other than plain water to satisfy your palate.

Also, take bananas, protein bars, string cheese and jerky. Foods like this that are light on the stomach, but convenient to eat.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:26 PM   #4
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Tip...sit down!

Don't pace for 10 straight hours. You stay on your feet the entire time you risk feeling like a wreck by the time deadlifts roll around. Sit and relax. Save your feet and lower back.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:39 PM   #5
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Tip...even if the bar feels heavy, you might just surprise yourself. If you've nailed those first 2 lifts, don't be afraid to go for a lifetime PR on the platform.

If my first 2 meets I've hit 3 huge lifetime PRs on the platform, and missed 3 lifetime PRs on the platform. The three I hit shocked me, but were moments I will never forget.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:51 PM   #6
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Tip: Open with your abilities not your ego. Your openers should be set to a weight you can hit on a bad day, with the flu. What counts is what you finish with, not open with.
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Old 08-06-2012, 01:01 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryano View Post
Tip: Open with your abilities not your ego. Your openers should be set to a weight you can hit on a bad day, with the flu. What counts is what you finish with, not open with.
Very important, what Roger just said.

At a lot of the local, smaller meets you see an army of guys opening too heavy and missing their first squat.
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Old 08-06-2012, 01:22 PM   #8
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Tip-Do not warmup with anything heavier than your opener, I have seen this many times and it boggles my mind. If your opening squat is 300 don't do 315 in the warmup room.
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Old 08-06-2012, 01:40 PM   #9
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Don't be shy and be open to meet people, and introduce yourself. You never know who you will meet at the meet!!
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Old 08-06-2012, 01:57 PM   #10
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Here's some things that worked for me.

Leading up to the meet hit, some singles regularly and practice paused bench esp. holding at start and finish too, but back off as the meet gets closer. A week away, just go through the motions with a decent weight on squats for Monday, Bench for Tues, and just do some cleans wed. then rest up until the meet.

Unless you are right on the bubble of a weight class, don't worry about losing weight for your first meet. Just lift in whatever class you weigh normally. I was at 190 for the 198 class for example, but it really didn't matter. Now, if I was 199 a couple days out, I'd for sure have lost the pound, though.

BtB covered getting the feel of the place and eating and drinking, Ryano covered the opener. I was told specifically to use a weight you flat know you can do. Something like an easy double or triple from your workouts.

You might think you're wasting a lift, but that first squat is overwhelming pressure, so you have to flat out know you will stand up with it. Same with the first bench, as their bench will not be like your bench, so be ready for anything. Deadlift, just go off how you feel because you will be tired mentally and physically from the brief stresses of the day as well as the interminable waiting! Definitely sit a lot! And watch the other groups lifts, they're inspiring.

After the opener, just go from there. Try to hit all three attempts, but if you miss a PR attempt, so be it. Being amped from the crowd will help you though, so don't be shy about giving it a go if you feel good.

Time your warmups at home, see what the minimum you need to be ready. Then add 5 min. Do plenty with very light weights, then 10 min out start ramping it up with singles to about 20-30 lb below your opener. Hopefully, there won't be a lot hammerheads hogging the warmup bars uneccesarily, so get in with a group you fit in with and take turns. If guys are hogging the bars, don't be afraid to butt in and take weights off the bar if you need to. You have to look out for yourself. But, you'll also be surprised at how strong you are on stage with less warmups than normal.

Take, or make a friend there to video your lifts. The people in the audience are very nice and will be happy to video if you ask.

Listen to the judges! They will help you too. Give you advice, etc. Do not be afraid to ask questions of anyone. Everyone there will want to help you. Everybody wants to see you make your lifts.

Read the rule book before! Don't forget socks (like me) or y-fronts or something silly. Check your bag twice. Write your lifts down before hand, saves thinking under pressure as you have to set your next lift right after you lift.

Hard not to feel pressure, but also rememember to enjoy yourself. It was a blast for me.
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