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View Full Version : Training advice for folks new to powerlifting



PriestCometh
10-08-2008, 05:36 PM
I know I am not the smartest person around. But, I get alot of new lifters that just show up at the gym and are so stuck on records. They dont want to lift unless they can kick everyones a$$. I think our society is so stuck on being the best right now. Instead of taking the knocks and kicks in the rear until you get to your goals(whatever they may be).

Here are some things that I tell new lifters(please add if you can think of some):

1. Be willing to learn. I have been doing this for 10 years and still learning alot.
Everytime I go to a meet, I ask others about the type of training that they do. If it sounds like it will work, I will try it. I take what works for me and use it. If it doesnt work for you, dont use it. But, you have to try it for a training cycle! Dont do it one week and say it doesnt work. No program works in 1 week.

The beauty of this sport is that the top lifters are very accessible. Personally I have gotten advice from(big breathe) Ed Coan, Garry Frank, Mikesell, Kellum, August Clark, Bolton, Louie Simmons, Bill Crawford, Kennelly, Rychlak, Mendelson, Wade Hooper, Bolt, Jim Kegrice, Heck, Luyando, Ted O'Neil, Thad Coleman, Ribic, Jack Reape, pretty much everyone I come into contact with. I would like to still learn from people like Doyle Kenady, Gene Bell and Vogelpohl.

2. Records are meant to be broken. Eventually, someone will break it. I have always been a believer in breaking personal records. Eventually, a record out there will fall. I have actually held multiple world records(there was 1 I held for about a month), but I think world championships are alot more important to me. Your not gonna be a world recordholder forever. But when you win a world championship, you are always the champ for that year.

3. Work hard. It doesnt come easy.

4. My favorite saying: Its not enough to be on the right track, If you are not moving forward your going to get run over. Probably, by a big f'n train.
Its not enough to know what you have to do. Get off your a$$ and do it.

5. Have a good gameplan. Attempt weights that you can make. I always tell my team that your first attempt gets you on the board, 2nd attempt is around max or what you need to place at a major event and third attempt is to win the damn thing. But, be realistic. If someone is 100 pounds higher than any weight that you have ever attempted, dont chase what you cant catch. Eventually, you will catch them. Just not today. No need to hurt yourself or waste a lift.

joey54
10-08-2008, 06:39 PM
Very good advice. Keep bumping this one.

Auburn
10-08-2008, 08:41 PM
Mine would be:

Don't worry about advanced programming if you're not an advanced lifter.
Don't talk too much.
There is nothing new in the strength game.

butcher2
10-08-2008, 08:47 PM
Don't be concerned with your weight class is your first meet. Hell, unless you're trying to break a record or win a specific competition, just worry about setting PR's; especially if you've never done the weight cutting before.

Eric Downey
10-08-2008, 10:58 PM
Good advise James

Travis Bell
10-08-2008, 11:15 PM
I know I am not the smartest person around. But, I get alot of new lifters that just show up at the gym and are so stuck on records. They dont want to lift unless they can kick everyones a$$. I think our society is so stuck on being the best right now. Instead of taking the knocks and kicks in the rear until you get to your goals(whatever they may be).

Here are some things that I tell new lifters(please add if you can think of some):

1. Be willing to learn. I have been doing this for 10 years and still learning alot.
Everytime I go to a meet, I ask others about the type of training that they do. If it sounds like it will work, I will try it. I take what works for me and use it. If it doesnt work for you, dont use it. But, you have to try it for a training cycle! Dont do it one week and say it doesnt work. No program works in 1 week.

The beauty of this sport is that the top lifters are very accessible. Personally I have gotten advice from(big breathe) Ed Coan, Garry Frank, Mikesell, Kellum, August Clark, Bolton, Louie Simmons, Bill Crawford, Kennelly, Rychlak, Mendelson, Wade Hooper, Bolt, Jim Kegrice, Heck, Luyando, Ted O'Neil, Thad Coleman, Ribic, Jack Reape, pretty much everyone I come into contact with. I would like to still learn from people like Doyle Kenady, Gene Bell and Vogelpohl.

2. Records are meant to be broken. Eventually, someone will break it. I have always been a believer in breaking personal records. Eventually, a record out there will fall. I have actually held world records(there was 1 I held for about a month), but I think world championships are alot more important to me. Your not gonna be a world recordholder forever. But when you win a world championship, you are always the champ for that year.

3. Work hard. It doesnt come easy.

4. My favorite saying: Its not enough to be on the right track, If you are not moving forward your going to get run over. Probably, by a big f'n train.
Its not enough to know what you have to do. Get off your a$$ and do it.

5. Have a gameplan.


One of the best posts I've seen bro. Nice work. I could not agree more

Mark!
10-09-2008, 02:51 AM
I think this post is awesome. And it will only grow ever better over time when the long time lifters key in on it. As a person who's just starting to get in to lifting on a more serious level, I take all the information I can get my eyes, ears or hands on. Thanks a ton! And keep 'em coming.

drew
10-09-2008, 06:32 AM
Lift heavy
Listen to your training partners
Don't miss weights

Andrew Cohn
10-09-2008, 08:41 AM
Great stuff bud. I have only been in the sport for 2.5 years so I can remember recently enough when I had troubles like the ones you mentioned. I always (now more then ever) accepted advice from anyone willing to give it but back when I started, I was scared to compete b/c I was afraid I would get laughed out of the building with the low weights I was attempting. But you have to remember that everyone started somewhere, and it wasn't at the top.

I would like to add one more thing to your list, CHECK YOUR EGO AT THE DOOR!. I mean this in 2 ways:

1) Early success has a way of creating egos. Don't let that happen
2) Lift the correct weights in training on a periodized basis. Don't let your ego take over and go attempt a 700 pound rack pull when your still knocking on the door of a 400 deadlift.

NASAKYCHAIRMAN
10-09-2008, 10:14 AM
I like the way you think!

Great post!

PriestCometh
10-09-2008, 10:36 AM
Great stuff bud. I have only been in the sport for 2.5 years so I can remember recently enough when I had troubles like the ones you mentioned. I always (now more then ever) accepted advice from anyone willing to give it but back when I started, I was scared to compete b/c I was afraid I would get laughed out of the building with the low weights I was attempting. But you have to remember that everyone started somewhere, and it wasn't at the top.

I would like to add one more thing to your list, CHECK YOUR EGO AT THE DOOR!. I mean this in 2 ways:

1) Early success has a way of creating egos. Don't let that happen
2) Lift the correct weights in training on a periodized basis. Don't let your ego take over and go attempt a 700 pound rack pull when your still knocking on the door of a 400 deadlift.

Everybody here has great suggestions. I like the one you posted about "when I started, I was scared to compete b/c I was afraid I would get laughed out of the building with the low weights I was attempting" . I get alot of new folks who are either thinking this or thinking that they are just going to throw on a bench shirt and bench 400 pounds more(it happens every week at my gym).

PriestCometh
10-09-2008, 10:41 AM
Don't be concerned with your weight class is your first meet. Hell, unless you're trying to break a record or win a specific competition, just worry about setting PR's; especially if you've never done the weight cutting before.

good stuff

abebesheir
10-09-2008, 10:57 AM
I guess the best advise anyone could give is to learn the lifts well. If you aren't using proper form you will get injured and you will not have a long PL career.
My first meet was in 2005 and I squatted 330, benched 275 and pulled 408 at 193... obviously, I did not set any records or even personal records (except for the pull) but I got a lot of compliments on my form.
Guys like Ryan Massey complimented me on my squat (very deep) and bench (good control, pause) and even a few audience members said that I lifted well for my appearance (I kinda look soft and weak... LOL).
I left the meet disappointed in my numbers but glowing for another reason altogether.
Since then, I have pushed hard and I hurt myself once or twice... I even had to switch to sumo pulling because of a lower back issue... but I always thank God for having the humility to cut back on the weight and pay attention to technique.

Ryan Hale
10-22-2008, 03:53 PM
Great thread,some very good thoughts and ideas.

Ryan Hale

bigbadwolfe
10-22-2008, 07:59 PM
~ Build a solid foundation to bench off of before getting to worried about the shirts

~ Seek out the knowledge of people in the know, this is the best thing anyone can do. I went to Westside and unlearned alot of stuff that I thought was right.

PriestCometh
10-23-2008, 12:48 PM
~ Build a solid foundation to bench off of before getting to worried about the shirts

~ Seek out the knowledge of people in the know, this is the best thing anyone can do. I went to Westside and unlearned alot of stuff that I thought was right.

So, very true. You can always learn more.

The other is a problem i deal with all of the time. Everyone wants to go straight to the shirt from day 1. A solid foundation is very important.