So here it is… the culmination of weeks of training. Hundreds of ours of hard work in and outside of the gym. Days of sleep. Millions of calories. It all comes down to these last 5 days.
There is always some level of anxiousness associated with the week of any form of competition. All of the hard work is complete and all that separates you from where you are and where you want to be is time. That is the difficult element, for a brief period you no longer have control over your fate. All you can do is glug down more water and do a few light lifts.
I like to pretend that I am calm and mediated the week, but despite my outward appearance internally I am very anxious, despite the level of the meet…
Ultimately, as much as it stresses me out I enjoy it a lot. There is no feeling like pushing your body to the absolute limit and acting like your life depends on it. Having a bunch of your friends and family cheering for you is a wildly positive and motivational experience and I recommend that everyone experience it if possible.
I will share with you some of the tips that help me get through those anxious days before the meet.
- Accept you can no longer change the outcome
The work is done, or at least it should be. Most top level lifters like to hit their openers over a week out to ensure that they are fully recovered for meet day. This is definitely a good idea, but, you should also be sure to keep your CNS awake, hitting a couple last warm-ups the week of is always a good strategy. Or hitting some heavy work in an assistance lift can be good, but specificity is king meet week in my opinion. The main takeaway from this point is just to accept you have put in the work and try to relax into the competition. There is no point pushing your body 3 days before the meet, it won’t help you!
2. Be consistent
I am as guilty of this as everyone else, but it is certainly a learning opportunity. There are so many people that decide the week of the meet is the time to focus on mobility, adding in extra foam rolling or extra stretching. I get the mentality for this, but, the week of the meet it is pointless. By all means, add this in after the meet but at this point, it is too late to make considerable effective changes to your form or ability. So just focus on what you currently do and manage it effectively, performing within yourself is the key to success.
3. Lift within yourself
Meet week isn’t the time to divulge from the plan. You should have your numbers set and the few remaining sessions between you and the meet should be practice only. The key to succeeding in the meet is knowing what you are capable of, push it a little bit but lift in the realms of your capability.
4. Don’t do anything stupid
This is the easy part, just don’t do anything you wouldn’t regularly do. I am all for adventurousness, just wait till next week yeah.
Ultimately, succeeding in a meet is not too tough. Just be yourself accept that there will be challenges but just be patient and enjoy the process. Powerlifting is a marathon comprised of many small sprints. So you must accept that there are breaks and points of much hard work. Just do your best to enjoy it and remember strength has no limit.