Last week the date and events/weights for the Britain’s Strongest Woman competition were announced. This is one of the top competitions in the UK, and the comp I was preparing to enter. Unfortunately, the comp date is a lot closer than I had hoped. We were expecting it to be in the second half of the year, but it is on March 1.
When I saw the announcement and the names of the competitors who had already signed up, I immediately felt sick. Not in the nervous-sick kind of a way that I normally feel when registering for a competition, but a ‘please don’t make me do this’ kind of sick. I sent the details to my coach, who replied back almost immediately with a big fat NO. I know that I can do the overhead weight by March if I train correctly, but there’s no way I can be competitive – given my current deadlift max is the starting weight, I think I’d be laughed out of the first round! The speed events are my strong point, but having gone up against many of these women in my first comp, I know even that isn’t good enough.
The events are as follows:
Max axle bar deadlift – starting at 120kg, no straps or suits, 30 second time limit per lift, 3 nominated lifts
Floor to overhead press – 50kg log (1 point) or 60kg axle (3 points)
Seated rope pull into prowler pus – 100kg, 15 metres each way
Keg carry and lift – 40kg AMRAP over 20 metres in 75 secs
180kg tyre flip into 75kg (each hand) farmers walk
Crucifix hold – 8kg per hand
The who’s who of strongwoman are doing this comp and I know I would get my arse kicked if I did it. There’s enough of a time crunch as it is given that it’s only three months away, never mind the fact I will be away for almost the whole month of January.
Even though the thought of doing this competition makes me feel sick, I still feel disappointed. The idea of having to wait another year to do this comp sucks. I plan to do one or two towards the end of next year, but this is the one I really wanted. Oh well. The good news is that I have plenty of time to prepare!
I like having a coach who can make these decisions for me. At the end of the day, he can’t stop me from entering any competition, but I know exactly why he is holding me back – I still need to work on my confidence more than anything, so getting thrashed in a heavy comp wouldn’t really be helping that.
Here are my workouts for last week:
Tuesday – Pressing with trainer
We did a 1.5 hour session of log pressing. It took me back to the good old days of when I first started learning to use the log! I probably did a good 30 sets. We kept it relatively light (didn’t go over 40kg, and stuck to the narrow log only) to hammer my technique on my technique.
We took a few videos to act as my ‘before’ clips. I’m trying to limit my knee bend on the first dip. In this video, my third and fifth rep are almost acceptable 😉
As soon as the weight increases, I default into either using too much leg drive or attempting the complete opposite and trying to strict press the log. Plus I get tired really quickly and my form starts to falter. LOL at the guy (a friend of mine) behind me chilling out with the barbell on his back after squats in this video.
And here’s one last one for a better look at my clean.
It’s so annoying because I don’t feel like I’m bending my knees at all and then I watch the videos back and cringe. I also tried Viper pressing for the first time, where you take the log straight from your knees to overhead in one movement. We did an AMRAP set and coach had to stop me because I would have been there all night!
Wednesday – Legs
Squats: 20kg x 8, 8, 40kg x 8, 50kg x 5, 60kg x 5, 65kg x 5, 70kg x 3
Barbell lunge: 30kg x 5, 5, 8
High step ups: 10kg x 8, 8, 8
Single leg hip thrust: 3 x 8
Superset with farmers walks: 2 laps of the gym with 25kg dumbbells
I seriously messed up my legs last week. On Sunday I did sprints and then on Tuesday I played tennis and endured a particularly spectacular sprint to the train station. For one or all of these reasons, my knees and hip flexors were completely wrecked – my excuse for only managing a piss poor 5 reps at 30kg for lunges!
I did this workout at work. My work has two gyms, a regular ‘commercial’ type gym and a strength and conditioning gym that the tennis players mainly use for Oly lifting. Although it’s convenient having gym access any time of day, I try not to work out there too often as I prefer being at my proper gym! Plus the weights aren’t heavy enough – the dumbbells only go up to 25kg, hence my lame farmers.
Friday – Deadlifts
Deadlifts: 50kg x 5, 5, 70kg x 5, 77.5kg x 5, 90kg x 5, 102.5kg x 3
Front squats: 20kg x 5, 30kg x 5, 40kg x 5, 5, 50kg x 3
Blue band chin-ups: 6 x 4
Log press (technique): 30kg x 5, 5, 5, 5
Barbell cleans: 40kg x 5, 5, 45kg x 3
Bent over rows: 45kg x 10, 10, 10
I’m doing a 5/3/1 style of programming for my squats, deads and bench at the moment. Deadlifts felt rough – I was supposed to do 102.5kg for 5 reps but I was struggling and didn’t want to force any reps. I seem to have huge peaks and valleys in strength when it comes to squats and deads.
Sunday – Pressing
Narrow log: 30kg x 5, 5, 35kg x 5, 5, 37.5kg x 3, 3, 40kg x 1
AMRAP with 30kg Viper-style: 10 reps in 75 seconds
Standing barbell strict press: 20kg x 10, 25kg x 7, 7
Narrow bench: 30kg x 6, 7, 7
Tricep pushdown: 40kg x 12, 12, 12
On the weekend, I also saw my training partner compete in her third powerlifting comp. She got a 150kg squat, 75kg bench and 170kg deadlift – she just missed out on the 180kg national record as she didn’t completely lock out. Even though I don’t want to compete in powerlifting (despite her begging me!), I love watching her and soaking up the competition atmosphere.
A few of you have been asking what/how I’m eating lately, so I’ll be back later in the week with a post all about food. Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below!