Today, March 14th, 2017 – I made it official. I will be competing in my very first Powerlifting meet and I can’t even explain the excitement I have!! Over the next three months the focus will be driven by this excitement. Each session won’t be easy, there will be ups and downs, but big picture – lift by lift, it will all be worth it.
So what took me so long? While I’ve coached both Powerlifting and Olympic lifting techniques to many athletes and clients, always encouraging performance goals to place a “purpose” behind their training, I myself have neglected to put a purpose behind my training. Sure, I’ve had PR goals in every lift that I execute, but I have yet to give my lifting a full purpose. Growing up, I spent time playing softball, soccer, running track, and many years as a cheerleader. All those years, it wasn’t until college that I realized how much I enjoyed the weightroom, hence my change in majors sophomore year from Graphic Design to Exercise Science. I started to realize the affect lifting/training had on me personally and professionally. The more I lifted, the more I wanted to share the benefits with others. Body composition, running performance (I was a runner all through college and even after, now I can’t even get myself to go beyond 2 miles – sprints all day though! 🙂 ), mental fitness, energy, stamina, injury prevention, barbell goals, drive, and sooo many more! I was so busy helping others find their purpose (which I love doing and still do), I forgot to practice what I was preaching.
A few months back, I was mid lift, when another female lifter asked me “Why don’t you compete?”. This question has come up before, but for some reason this time it inspired me. I’ve spent so many years encouraging others, why aren’t I doing the same thing for myself? I thought about it for a little bit and found the answer. An answer I knew deep down inside for a long time and I feel many people share with me. I was afraid to fail. I was afraid to not win. Reality is, you can’t win if you don’t try. I have applied the same concept to the athletes I’ve worked with. You can’t get stronger if you choose to hold yourself back because you are afraid to fail. You can’t compete at the highest level possible if you don’t start somewhere. Progress is progress and it doesn’t happen by standing still. Competing in powerlifting is now my purpose and putting a total on the board at my first meet is my goal.
Some athlete’s training purpose might be to get a W on the board for their team, and by increasing strength they are increasing their potential to do so. Other athlete’s purpose is more individualized such as; putting up total on the board at a meet, setting a PR in a race, or stepping on to the stage in a physique competition. Athlete’s can’t succeed by hiding behind the fear of failure. Athletes can’t succeed without having a purpose. I won’t succeed if I keep putting it off. And trust me, I know I will regret it. Competing in Powerlifting has always been a goal, now it’s my reason for training. It’s never too late.
Whatever your purpose is, it should be what drives your training, what drives you to do better at your sport. Don’t get me wrong, living longer and having more energy are great goals, but are they enough to keep you motivated or do they just keep you going through the motions? Think about something that will add accountability to the work you put in. Saying “I need more energy” is one thing, but gaining more energy because you increased your fitness while training to compete in your first meet is another. The energy you gain, the weight you lose/gain, the years you gain, they are bonus goals! What is your purpose!?
- Find your purpose
- It’s never to late to pick up a sport.
- We can all be athletes, find what drives you and compete!
- We can’t win without trying!
Until next time! Happy Lifting!