On the weekend just passed I competed at my second ever Central Districts Powerlifting Championships. This was my first official IPF competition in my new weight class – under 52kg.
I spent the best part of 2017 very slowly decreasing my weight and body fat whilst attempting to increase strength. This is a different approach than a lot of powerlifters seem to take, which seems to be ignore the weight until a few weeks before competition then cut like crazy. (Definitely not all powerlifters but this does seem to be a common theme from where I’ve been sitting). After the horrendous weight cut that was the EABC competition where I first attempted dropping down to 52kg I decided that I never wanted another cut to be that horrific again.
Turns out my weight cut protocol was a bit out as I was 52.1kg the day before the competition. I was a bit nervous that our scales were on the light side so wanted to make sure that I was definitely under on the day – which I was. I weighed in at 51.6kg and straight away started eating and rehydrating. This was the first weight cut where I actually felt like myself on competition day – the last two times (EABC and Masterton Bench Only) I felt a little bit outside of myself, kind of like an outsider looking in. Next competition I will adjust the weight cut protocol so I don’t come in so far under on competition day.
I had set some pretty lofty goals for this competition and I am proud to say that I smashed them all. Hard work and consistency definitely paid off. I was a little bit niggly a few weeks out so started seeing a physio once a week which definitely helped. Between the physio and Kyle & Carli’s observations I now have some weaknesses that I am planning on working on going forward, which should ultimately help my lifts tremendously!
I had a competition plan in place that I had followed to a ‘T’ in my last two training sessions the week leading up to CD Champs so I knew exactly what my warmup attempts would be and what the plan was for competition day. I think having a plan definitely helps make the day go smoother, it’s also a good idea to have a B plan, just in case you aren’t quite on your A game that day – I had to use my B plan for Masterton Bench only. Luckily I was able to follow my A plan for the Central Districts Powerlifting Championship.
Squats started out solidly and I’d go as far to say that technically they were probably my best lifts of the day. I opened with a 120kg squat (5kg above my previous best competition squat). It moved pretty well so I jumped up to 125kg (a lift I had done the Monday leading into competition), 125kg also moved well (and this matched the current NZ Record). I was fairly confident that I could get a 130kg to competition depth (something I had only done once in training 7 weeks prior and with dubious depth) so I gave it a crack and was stoked to get three white lights and it was nowhere near as grindy as the 130kg I had done in training earlier. +15kg on last 3 lift competition
Ahhh Bench Press, I’m still not in love with you yet, but I am working on it. The week before CD Champs bench felt AMAZING in training and 65kg flew up like it was nothing. The week leading in to the champs bench was SLOW. I still managed to do my prescribed weights but they weren’t feeling like they were moving fast enough. On competition day I opened with a 62.5kg (my third attempt and PB at CD Champs 2016) which moved pretty well, despite loosing tightness at the bottom. Second attempt I went for 65kg to match a PB and I got it, with better form than the first attempt. Third attempt the only place I could realistically go was to 67.5kg. Unfortunately all form broke down on this third attempt and complete loss of tightness at the bottom meant that I barely even moved the weight off my chest. One day Bench will be second nature to me and I’ll stop loosing tightness! +2.5kg on last 3 lift competition
Deadlift is my lift. This is the one I always look forward too, yes it’s because it’s my strongest lift. At Oceania’s I managed to nab a New Zealand record and since then I had only lifted 150kg once – the week before CD Champs. This was going to be interesting! I opened at a relatively aggressive 147.5kg and was confident that I could nail this one, which I did. My second attempt I went for 155kg which also went up despite some technical glitches on my behalf, this took me to a goal of mine which was to do a 3X bodyweight deadlift! 155.5kg is the current NZ Record in U52s and I had a goal to do a 160kg deadlift this year so we went for 160kg for the third attempt. Despite 3 technical errors in my lifting (non red light related, more form breakdown) I managed to get the 160kg. Cue celebratory arms in air and hugs all round. +10kg on best 3 lift competition
Overall +27.5kg increase on my best 3 lift total – and at a lighter weight class.
I had set myself a number of mini goals leading into this competition, all in the name of getting a big goal I have set for myself this year for competing overseas. My mini goals for this competition were to total at least 350kg and to get a wilks score of at least 440 plus another mini goal of getting best overall open female lifter.
I managed to get a 355 total, 444 wilks and acheived best overall open female lifter. I am beyond stoked with how this competition went, despite some technical issues with my lifting which I need to work through. The only red lights I received were for my third bench attempt which barely got off my chest. There are a number of things I will be working on from here on out, new goals have been set and I am currently having a full week off any form of training (other than mobility) to recover as it’s been WAY too long since I last had more than two days off.
This year there were trophies for the Central Districts Powerlifting Champs and I was lucky enough to get two of them, so now I actually have some trophies for our new trophy shelf that Kyle put up in our gym!! All the trophies before this weekend were Kyles 😉
I’ve put together a quick video of all three of my best lifts below.
A huge shoutout to Jeff Simpson Sports Shots who took all of the black and white photographs in this post.