This is my first post so bare with me.
24 hours ago I competed in my first full power meet at the UPA Iron Sport Classic in Glenolden PA. It was a big first step in what I hope to be a long powerlifting career.
Up until I took the platform yesterday I was disinterested in powerlifting as a discipline and a sport. I entered the meet only after pulling the Dr Ken train wheels with my buddy in early August. I was tired of hearing everyone call me out about being a "gym lifter" and not competing. BY the end of August I sent in my application to the meet.
For 3 years I was a bencher who did the "other lifts" just to avoid being a bench only guy. I hated squats and saw deadlifts as a means to just get a wide back. I also messed around with strongman lifts, but never anything serious. This was a massive problem, because I had NO idea how to train for a competition. I only had done a push pull in 2010, and even then it was a token competition.
In his infinite kindness and willingness to mentor, Tone Barbaccio and the Jersey Iron crew helped me out. Tone got me on a custom program that began to dial me in. It was a TOUGH road. I suffered a badly strained back and a strained left shoulder. I spent a lot of time with my chiropractor. There was also a lot of doubt. Tone was fantastic though. He kept on top of me and helped manage me physically and mentally. He was a MAJOR factor in getting me to the platform.
Come meet day I was dialed in to hit 550 squat, 430 bench and 620 dead....or so I thought. I entered in calm, but as my flight began to compete the nerves came out. My first rep in the squat is a blur. However, it went as did the second and third. I was hooked. The adrenaline rush and the cheers of the crowd and fellow lifters was amazing. The bench and deadlift were much harder than I thought they'd be. I learned very quickly that what I do in the gym is NOT the same as meet day.
I eventually finished with a 565 squat, 405 press and 550 pull. It got me a 1520 total, short of my 1600 goal. I learned a ton and had a lot of fun lifting. I can't wait to get back. I owe myself 80lbs. All in all it was a great day and I couldn't be more grateful to Tone and the Jersey Iron crew for helping me out.
Oh and btw I won my weight class (boom)
Can't wait to recover and get back out to train. I'll keep you all posted on my progress.
-John "Power Panda" Tantoco