So there it is. I’ve completed my last heavy lifting day until Saturday, the day of my first powerlifting meet. I went in for a second session of coaching- yes, my second EVER, excepting the posing lessons I had before my March figure competition- again on bench, my weakest lift, and arguably the most complex. We worked up to moderately heavy singles, then did some overload work with a nifty thing I’d never used before- a Slingshot. By the end of the session, after having Derek, who is a total badass and I totally want to be when I grow up, observe some light squats for form and command practice, we set my openers on all three lifts, and discussed my second and third attempts as well.
Come with a game plan. DO NOT FUCK AROUND WITH IT. There will be enough to worry about and busy myself with on meet day.
This peak week, there’s no strategic carb-up a few days out, like there was for bodybuilding… though there are LOTS of carbs. There is no walking in heels and practicing posing in the patio door reflection. There is no excessive exfoliation, or finalizing with the makeup artist. There is no counting of new weird veins appearing. In fact, I’m watching them disappear a bit as I eat… and eat… and eat…
Most of the rest of this week will be resting. Resting. RESTING. Ugh, that’s boring. But the whole thing is, you over-reach, push hard, and then rest. Your beat up body needs some time to recover, not just to 100%, but to better than 100%. On meet day, I need to wake up feeling rested, strong, not sore, ready to give my everything on the platform. Coach said I can, and should, do a light bodybuilding-type workout at some point this week, I’ll probably aim for Wednesday- just to get the blood flowing into the muscles, but not fatigue them; keeping from getting stiff, but allowing healing. No heavy lifting. This will be a test of my willpower, more than avoiding any cookie, more than not petting any puppy has ever been.
It has been recommended that I do some extra self-care this week, though. Extra foam rolling, a little light mobility work, walking… I understood this “extra self-care” to mean that I should schedule a massage this week. Right? For performance!
My favorite part about this whole experience so far is the part where there’s so much blasted food. Oh god I love food. There’s been pizza and beer and doughnuts… and that was just Sunday. My macros have been increasing each week, making it easier and easier to fit these fun treats in amongst my staple carrot sticks and turkey sandwiches. I set my weekly macros every Sunday, after assessing how my body responded to the last increase, as always, and my increases have been growing each week.
Keeping it transparent, I’ve overshot my goals more days in the last two weeks than I’ve hit them. Because my goals are performance based, and my abs do not give a shit, I’ve been giving in to it.
Not giving in, that seems almost guilty.
I’ve been listening to it.
I’m trying to be strong, here, physically, not flex my willpower muscle. Body says eat more? FINE. Eat more. So then I’m not starving, I’m full and happy. Not at all like peak week for figure. My weight has been increasing a little, though surprisingly little, considering the number of calories I’m consuming. I’m still, by some science magic (lezbe real, we all know it’s science), less than 10 pounds over my stage weight. But my lifts are feeling positively beastly, strong, smooth, confident.
This is a whole new experience- I’ve always prided myself on my ability to assess my body, but this is a whole different version of it, perhaps something akin to intuitive eating. Sometimes that means like 450 carbs on a big lifting day. Sometimes it means only eating 1300 calories on a rest day because I’m just not hungry. I still have my macro RATIOS pretty close to what I’ve calculated, but I’m eating, on an overall weekly average, more than I have been planning. And I don’t. Feel. Bad. About it.
Rest days, according to the way I cycle my carbs, are typically lower calorie, low carb/high fat days. However, things are looking a little bit different on my spreadsheet this week. First off, my guts cannot handle the insane amount of fats that 4 consecutive rest days in a week would have me eating. I’ll spare you the imagery, but it would be ugly. Secondly, I want to feel full of energy on meet day, and this was confirmed as I talked with Coach about how to prepare properly. I’ll be taking two of my rest days as I normally would, but in the days leading up to Saturday, I’ll be a eating moderate to high carb, to fill up my glycogen stores and be ready to hit the platform like a carbed-up beast bright and early Saturday.
So. Peak week: powerlifting edition. Way less graphic and weird and complicated than figure edition.
This is awesome!