Here come the butterflies...

Here come the butterflies…

Last week was PR central! I squatted 100kg and benched 50kg paused for the first time. My deadlift wasn’t a PR but it still boosted my confidence to be able to lift a weight very close to my existing one rep max.

The big news to report is that I just found out Laurence Shahlaei will be competing at and Andy Bolton will be watching my meet. No pressure!!! The competition is relatively small, with only 30 total competitors, so I’m surprised at how many super strong guys are competing. And there will be little ol’ me, with my piss weak bench. Oh well. Even though I’m on track to perform better than I was originally expecting, I’m walking around with a constant feeling of butterflies in my stomach.

Monday – Squats
I took the day off work to travel up to Birmingham to train at the gym my competition is being held at. I trained with Em and her coach, and it was an eerily quiet environment to hit a PR in.

The 95kg (210lbs) squats weren’t as smooth as the previous week, but it still felt pretty awesome to be that relaxed and casual approaching the bar.

95kg squat

Given all the knee crap I’ve had to deal with over the years (problems in both knees from dancing and running, and then getting hit by a van and taking the brunt of it in my left knee), I never thought I’d be able to actually squat 100kg (220lbs). It’s ugly, but it’s a PR! I was very, very happy!

100kg squat

I’ve been eating pretty “clean” lately, so these intra-workout Whoppers certainly hyped me up! Unfortunately, they left my stomach in knots until Friday. That could have just been the nerves, though. I did a pretty good job of working myself into a state last week!


The whole journey door to door took me 10.5 hours. The things I do for this sport!

Tuesday – Bench
I tested my bench max before I started training with Alanna, and it was a hard 50kg (110lbs). So to pause this, easily, felt really bloody good!

50kg bench

47.5kg bench

Unfortunately, I failed the 65kg slingshot but I didn’t really care because I was still on a high from the bench.

I also did some board pressing. Easy peasy! I heart bench day.

42.5kg board press

Thursday – Deadlifts
I was stupidly nervous about this session. Deadlifts the previous week hadn’t gone so well, so I was praying that it was just a bad day and not reflective of the ongoing problems I’ve had with my deadlift in the past year. Thankfully, they felt easier. They were still heavy, but it didn’t feel like I was pulling through concrete.

I did three sets at 122.5kg (270lbs) and one at 125kg (275lbs).

122.5kg deadlift

125kg deadlift

Thank goodness I don’t have to do any more stiff-legged deficits before the comp. I hate these, as you can probably tell from the expression on my face!

Stiff-legged deadlifts

To be honest, I haven’t even noticed that I’ve cut back on training and cardio. I’ve been so damn busy I haven’t even had time to do yoga! I’m hoping things will calm down a little bit this week so I can devote more time to stretching and calming the hell down. I need to sort out my training playlist, practice some positive visualisations and all that jazz.

I squeezed in time to get some new specs. The occasion called for a selfie, obviously!


I’m on track to make weight. The only thing I’m worried about is weighing in itself: we are travelling up the night before so I will likely not be able to eat or drink anything all day Saturday to ensure I make weight.

I’ve been eating lots of bro food, but still fit in some Mexican on Saturday…


…and a burger on Sunday. It had been far too long since I went to Patty and Bun. When I eventually get around to writing that Top 10 Burgers post, I think it’s a top contender!


This week is my last week of heavy training. I can’t believe that tonight is the last time I will squat until comp day! It’s my birthday tomorrow and all I want is a bench PR 🙂 After tomorrow, I will be eating 100% strict until weigh-in. Boo.

Have you ever had to lift in front of someone famous? What’s the longest distance you’ve travelled to work out?

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