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My First Powerlifting Meet and the Best Part of It

Updated: Jun 14, 2023

I am so glad I didn’t bail on my first powerlifting meet and leave Cali hanging! I had probably one of the worst training sessions on the Monday before the meet in over eight months. My “light” squat day felt heavy, I was exhausted, squats were horrible, and halfway through, I knew I had to walk away for the day because I probably would have hurt myself. It was that bad. Then, I noticed it would be beautiful on Saturday, and I kept thinking that I didn’t want to be “stuck inside all day.” Honestly, it was an excuse to try and bail on the meet after such a horrible Monday lift session.

I forced myself into a real deload/active recovery week on Tuesday–Friday. I focused on light get-ups, light swings, and doing mobility drills in between. Plus, I dialed in on my nutrition, made sure I was getting enough calories, and focused on hydration (I’m now obsessed with the powder Liquid IV packets to help with hydration).

On Friday evening, I packed my bag (food, water, singlet, extra clothes, etc.) so that I could just focus on nutrition and food in the morning. I was starting to get nervous, but I finally headed out to York, PA, for the Powerpalooza through Revolution Powerlifting (Check them out)!

I also want to give Coach Cali a shoutout for hitting a PR (personal record) on ALL of her lifts (squat, bench, deadlift) at the meet! (You all need to check out her bench press!!!)

The meet kicked off with this adorable 8-year-old boy going first (My nerves were already shot. I don’t know how he could be the FIRST lifter during this event with all eyes on him! He was awesome).

The best thing about the powerlifting community is seeing everyone cheering and encouraging everyone else no matter what weight they were picking up (it does not matter). This eight year old squatted the 45# bar, and the judges had to help him get set since he wasn’t tall enough to reach it himself. So cute! So, to anyone new to this world, it can be quite intimidating. The judges are strong guys (just go watch Westside vs the World on Netflix, and you will get an idea) why it may be a bit intimidating at first. Let me tell you something; these were some of the nicest people I have met in this industry (which is an industry full of a bunch of egomaniacs who literally think they are all that with their shirtless selfies doing bicep curls yet can’t stand up straight because all they do are bench, biceps and triceps… you know what I mean :)

I had the head judge encouraging me through every lift (even after I had failed my 3rd bench attempt, he told me it was a great fail). He told me to finish strong when I went for my final attempt on my deadlift. He even reminded me to get my eyes up on my final squat so that I could successfully complete the lift. It was truly the best possible experience I could have asked for, and I will definitely be looking for more events that they host again this year.

If you are interested in a powerlifting event, send me an email. I would like to get a group of us to go to a meet together by the end of the year (myself and the other coaches can guide you on your numbers and attempts that day, so you can just worry about lifting the weights :)

Just remember, the purpose of a meet is to see how all of your hard work is paying off. It may also be an opportunity where you may need to go back to the drawing board to evaluate a program to get better. No one at these events cares what the actual weight you are lifting is. All they care about is working hard and encouraging each individual along the way! So, I want to know, who is with me for the next one?!

All I can say is I’m glad I didn’t let my nerves get the best of me (and bail on the event and Cali) because now I’m obsessed and can’t wait to do it again soon!

Have a great weekend and go pick up some heavy weights!

In Strength,

- Charlene

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