It's been a little over a month now since I bombed out of the biggest meet I've ever done. I've been putting this article off for too long now, so it's time to finally write about what happened that day and hopefully give someone reading this some advice on what NOT to do when competing, or ever for that matter.
I'm not here to give you guys a list of excuses on why I performed so poorly that day, but I am going to tell you what I think went wrong because I know my body and I wasn't myself at all that entire day. I honestly should've dropped out of the meet with being injured, all the personal life drama and being broke as hell, but my pride said "nope" and "I ain't no b****". I had a good game plan, I was going take a small squat PR and take a "token" bench to stay in the game. What I really wanted was the All Time World Record deadlift, but after my first bench attempt my day went very south.
Squats went incredibly well, 3/3 with a PR of 418 in knee sleeves @ 164 bodyweight. I couldn't have been happier, considering my best squat in knee wraps is 424. I was very proud of that squat and I still am.
Onto bench, something I've never liked or been good at. Warmups hurt like a b**** but I sucked it up and stuck with the plan, I was going to take at least 181lbs to stay in the game (my best competition bench is 242). I tried for a 2nd attempt at 203 but it hurt so bad I told the spotters to take it off my chest. Scratched my 3rd and moved on from the beginning of my s*** show.
If you have been following me on social media, you might already know that I've been dealing with some shoulder and bicep pain for several months now, which has made benching agonizing. I saw many different specialists, but no one could really figure out what I did or how to fix it. I spent thousands of dollars for nothing because everything I had done was basically a band-aid. Squatting low bar with a narrow hand placement irritated my already injured shoulder, and trying to lift my arm at all after benching made me want to cry like a lil b****.... so after squats I decided to take some vicodin.
I don't ever take painkillers or any take anything and I hardly ever drink alcohol anymore. I did something very stupid that I or no one should ever do (unless you are used to that sort of thing) and it was take a f****** painkiller when my body was NOT used to that at all. I didn't feel "high", I just didn't feel like myself and my body wasn't performing the way it normally would. I was riding the bar on my thighs during deadlifts which is something I have NEVER done, not even in training. My form was all over the place, I felt like someone else was controlling my body and it was one of the worst feelings I've felt in a long time.
Having all this time to sit back and think about what happened that day, I'd be a liar if I said I wasn't bummed or regretted my decisions. I failed my deadlift opener of 507 three times and it was because I did something out of the ordinary on the day where all my months of hard work mattered the most. It all went down the s*****r, in front of tons of people on the live stream and people I met in the crowd who "couldn't wait to watch me deadlift." I felt like I let not only myself down but everyone else as well.
Then I said "f*** it" because really....It's simple: LIFE GOES ON. Powerlifting will always be one of my greatest loves and passions, but bombing out of one meet isn't the end and shouldn't discourage me or anyone for that matter. It's bound to happen to all of us at one point for many different reasons, you just have to suck it up, figure out what went wrong and move on. Sometimes, you just have a really bad day of lifting and it unfortunately lands on the day it matters most. S*** happens, I'm just grateful I didn't get any more injured and that my body is slowly healing. If I have any advice for someone reading this who is a rookie to the game, I'd say to never change anything on or close to competition day. You should do the same thing every single training session, practice good depth, practice press commands, wear the same gear you have trained in on meet day and so on and so forth. Basically, listen to your body and don't be an idiot and do what I did. It's OK to drop out of a meet if you're injured or have a lot of stress going on in your life, we all go through it. Let it make you stronger, train smarter and want it more. The bar will always be there and the platform will always be ready for you, you just have to want it and put in the work.