Tag Archives: Competition

The Rough Road to a Dream

28 Jan
Right Patella

The back of the patella should be smooth not look like a jelly fish, picture taken before surgery.

Three weeks after Nationals in July I was just starting a new cycle and on my third set of squats I felt something in my knee go. On September 13th I had knee surgery to repair the cartilage on my patella. My doctor said no one my age should have a knee like that. The cartilage on my knee was damaged from years of wear and tear. 10 years of riding horses, 15+ years of riding motorcycles and 10+ years of running and riding bicycles then a few years of lifting finally did it in. Surgery was the easy part. I was walking the next day and back to work on Monday. I was very optimistic and knew I would be back to lifting in time to compete at the Nov state meet. Ya……not so much.

It’s been 4 months since surgery and I am just now able to squat 2 plates where normally I would be squatting 250+ lbs a couple times a week. The last 4 months have been very tough mentally. Normally I never miss a workout, I always do all my lifts on my cycle and never leave the gym because I just wasn’t feeling good. The last 4 months I have missed several lifts, skipped workouts because I just didn’t have anything to give, and cried because I thought I would probably never be able to compete again. A lot of powerlifters have written articles and have talked about dealing with injury but you never really know until you face it yourself. It puts things into perspective for me. I watched Lindsay Vonn on TV this morning who is the top downhill skier and was predicted to get gold in Sochi. I had tears for her just thinking how hard it must be to go through what she is going through with a knee injury and not going to the Olympics. But she will compete again and so will I.

I take one day at a time. Last week was a bad week, but this week has been great so far so I focus on the good. I tell myself every day in the gym, “Give it your best, thats all I can do. Tomorrow is a new day.” I thank God every day that he has given me another day to do things that I love and I promise him to take care of myself. Which means I listen to my body and I push when I can and rest when I can’t. I have learned how important recovery can be and use it more now than I ever have with much reward.

In December I received an invitation to compete on the USAPL Masters World Team at the 2014 Classic Worlds in South Africa. A dream come true! Since I started powerlifting my ultimate goal was to have the opportunity to compete at the World Level and here I am. Its really so amazing to me to be in the company of so many amazing lifters. I know this will be the toughest meet I have ever trained for and after just coming off my injury I will really need to dig deep for the strength to finish each training day. I will continue to take one day at a time and enjoy the journey.

I will leave you with this little inspiration. My biggest inspiration always has and continues to be everyone who steps on the platform, novice or veteran. The last state meet I was a ref at some people took a ton of pictures capturing me in the background judging the lifts. And in EVERY picture I have this crazy face. The reason my facial expressions were so funny is because when I watch a lifter I actually feel what they are feeling and I make the appropriate face. When they struggle, I make the painful struggle face. When they get the lift or I know they are going to get it I make the giddy happy face. When I see people do there crazy rituals on the platform that non-lifters would commit us for; I smile big knowing that I have my crazy rituals too and without those the bar would be twice as heavy! Every person that goes out there I share their passion and I love to feel what they feel, every lesson learned, every achievement, and every moment of passion. They inspire me every day.

And if for one second you are too old to do something or have some sort of excuse, Diana Nyad said, “You can chase your dreams at any age!”

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2012 USAPL Raw Nationals

24 Sep

I’m sure it’s a little late for a Nationals recap but since I haven’t updated my blog in so long I felt it was necessary to at least catch everyone up. I am hoping to find more time and words to update regularly now. USAPL Raw Nationals was in August in Texas. After the Arnold in March I made a decision to take a step back from my training. I was working a lot at my job and was working toward a promotion which was very demanding on my schedule and stress level. I was also burning the candle from both ends when it came to my overall health so I wanted to just rest and take some time to decide what I really wanted to do and how I wanted to go about achieving that. I cut my time in the gym in half, ate what I wanted, worked out when I wanted to and took rest days when I wanted them.

My training consisted of progressive strength over time and some extra focus on the bench which has been the weakest of the three lifts for me and has never increased in strength. I played around with different things that has worked in the past for me and added lots of work with Mark Bell’s Sling Shot. I also used bands in all three lifts every week. I had a lot of fun with my training and I started looking forward to going to the gym again.

My goal going into Nationals was simple, maintain my current strength level and play my numbers safe. I knew going into it there were several girls that are lifting numbers close to or better than my numbers and I had to get the most out of my lifts. Which for me meant lifting numbers I knew I could get and not miss any. My goal was 9 for 9. There was one thing I was going to push and that was the bench. My focus on the bench in my training paid off and I knew I was going to lift more than I usually do in that lift so I did plan to take a risk there on my last bench lift.

The Squat went exactly as planned I felt good in the warm up room and each lift felt great. I planned my last lift at 297lbs which is a weight I have lifted a few times in competition and figured I could probably get and I did. I was especially happy to make this lift because I had been struggling with my squat for a while. Moving on to the bench I have been stronger than ever in the gym so I was going to go for a 5lb PR on my last lift. I benched 155lbs on my second lift and went for 165lbs and missed. Actually I was struggling with the weight and the spotters must have thought I was going to drop it because they lifted it out of my hands. The head judge gave me a re-lift but there wasn’t any more in the tank after that. Going into the deadlift I felt pretty spent and I knew my strength wasn’t going to be where I wanted it. Chelsea was looking strong and she was right on my heals. I knew I had to get at least my second lift and hopefully my third to hold on to second place. On my second lift I pulled 363lbs but it was super heavy and I looked like a turtle. I knew I wasn’t getting my next planned lift at 380lbs so we dropped it to 370lbs and I couldn’t even budge it from the floor. In the end I held on to second place and took home first in the Master Division also.

I managed to get 7 lifts out of 9 which was 2 less than my goal and I couldn’t have been happier with that. I really wanted to get second which was one place better than last year, so I am moving up.

Nationals was extra special this year because my good friends Jill and Nichole came out to support me. Jill offered to be my handler for the meet and I was so grateful to her for that. It’s really hard to do a meet by yourself because you need to watch your numbers if there is a close race, not to mention have someone load all your warm up weights and run your lift numbers. I loved doing this meet because I was able to see my friends who are also my competitors but first they are my friends. We always have a good time and cheer each other on. Im so proud of everyone and can’t wait to do it again in March at the Arnold!

 

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