You get out what you put in: The Deadlift Challenge
Just like with anything in life, you can set your plans but they don’t always go the way you want every time.
With training, when you’re pushing yourself you can find the sessions don’t always go to plan.
Whether you are trying to put some numbers on your lifts, trying to get a personal best time, or a certain number of repetitions the determining factor for success is actually what you do outside of the gym or the track.
If you’re just training to maintain your fitness then it’s not as crucial, although you’ll obviously still be able to train better if properly fed and rested before each session.
But, as I knew well and am finding out once again, if you’re looking to push your performance than nothing less than a disciplined and solid out of gym schedule is going to get you the results you want.
As you may or may not know, I was away for a couple of weeks one week ago, and while it was a blast it was far from optimal from the perspective of my deadlift goals.
I didn’t train, didn’t eat much or very often and had a few drinks. Not abnormal when you’re on holiday somewhere.
There was a lot of travelling either side and in between plus the time difference that meant this week I’ve held a sense of fatigue pretty much the whole time; not the best way to be at work!
I thought I could get over it quickly and slot straight back into it. When I went to lift the day after getting back I didn’t complete my session as planned, but I didn’t think too much of it: I wasn’t fresh, it was understandable.
However this time around, one week later and I still didn’t feel good.
The weights I was ripping up before I left felt slow and difficult. I actually failed a rep for the first time since I started the challenge too, which annoyed me. Missing reps can start to play tricks on your mind if you’re not careful.
In fact, I was so disgusted with my session yesterday I went in again today and repeated it, after making sure I ate well and had a good nights sleep.
Not necessarily ideal from a recovery standpoint but I couldn’t let it lie.
It went better, and I managed 2 sets of 1 rep of 210 kgs beltless, which is better than I have done in a long while, but still not where I should be by this point.
What these two sessions have hammered home is that if I really want to hit that PR in a few weeks then I’m going to have to considerably reapply myself and get the engine going again.
That means sleeping enough, eating properly and making sure I’m prepped before EVERY session, not just my deadlift days, to give myself the positive mindset and confidence to start hitting these big numbers.
I don’t mean I have to live like some sort of gym monk, just to apply myself to the task at hand for the next few weeks with no interruptions.
I’ve got some big goals to fill this year, and the deadlift challenge is just a small microcosm of that: the goal itself is not necessarily important but fostering the right mindset and approach to hitting your targets is a good way to train yourself to be successful in life.
That’s what I love about training. It can serve as an analogy for the bigger goals in life.
Can you plan and execute, over a sustained period of time? Can you discipline yourself to give yourself the best chance of success? Can you develop the mentality to succeed, and focus on one goal at a time?
I’m not overreacting about my missed reps. I’m pissed because I let it slip the past few weeks, and the wider implications as a whole.
But I’m going to refocus and re-commit myself to this goal.
No more excuses, no more missed reps.
If you’re doing your own challenge then I hope it’s still going well!