Meet Report: 5 Bar Showdown – Atlanta, GA 7/8 – 7/9 201

I competed in the 5 Bar Showdown, a Pro USAPL Meet this past weekend and wanted to share my full meet report.

For a summary of my thoughts on the event, training leading up to the meet, and post-meet feels keep reading.

5 Bar Event Thoughts: 

This was such a cool meet. Josh Rohr always puts on a show. My favorite part of the entire weekend was the livestream featuring all platforms for the whole weekend. It gave lifters who aren’t necessarily ready for the National/World platform an opportunity to be treated like an elite lifter. The announcers at the meet and the commentators for the live feed did an excellent job. Anyone that’s ever done a meet put on by Josh probably feels the same way. He does some next level stuff…  This meet was both USAPL and USAW sanctioned. I obviously only did the powerlifting portion, although there were options and awards for both USAPL, USAW, and Combined Superman/Superwoman scores.

I ended up going 8/9 at the meet with a total of 385 / 848.78# with a wilks of 355ish. Not sure.. I’ll have to double-check once the results are posted.

Weight Class/Diet: 

I competed at the 84KG (-184#) class weighing in at 172#/ 78KG. I’ve been cutting from my highest weight of 205# last December, and have lost a considerable amount of (absolute) strength over the last year and a half, although my Wilks has been fairly consistent – hovering between 352-360.

Four weeks prior to the meet I decided not to try and cut 8 lbs. to get to the 72KG class so I was happy to put on a few lbs. and train in a caloric excess for the last few weeks. It was awesome.

Pre-Meet Training:

I’m working with a coach, Jeremy Hartman out of Indianapolis, IN.  We’ve been working since November after USAPL Raw Nationals to build strength during the cut with a heavy emphasis on non-competition lifts, rest, and recovery rather than squatting myself into the ground every workout.  I’ve been training 4 days a week and incorporating restorative Yoga into my routine for active rest days. I haven’t done a meet since Raw Nationals last October. This meet was long overdue.

My program has been linear, focusing on competition variations (Feet up on bench, wide grip, close grip, high bar, sumo stance dl etc) Normally I hit openers a week out and rest from there, however, this cycle was a little different. I hit a lot of my 2nd attempts a week and a half out instead of openers. It gave me a lot of confidence going into this meet after not having competed since October and considering the strength loss with the lower body weight.

Day Before/ Day Of The Meet: 

They day before the meet I volunteered a little bit. As a meet director, friend of team Rohr, and USAPL Ref I spent some time doing gear check, managing platforms, and filled in on announcing when volunteers ran low. I left the meet at about 2PM to go back to our hotel and binge watch Hulu for the rest of the night so I could get some rest off my feet.

As a lifter with a great deal of platform experience, I’ve gotten a little rusty and was a little bit of a mess the day of the meet. Didn’t get rack heights or gear check taken care of the night before, so I made sure to get there early on the day of the meet to have plenty of time to get my thoughts together before weigh ins.

I did a small water cut from 178# to 172# – I put on a little too much weight (8 lbs. overshooting my 4 lb goal – heh – after I decided not to cut). I was shooting for 175 but let myself get a little bit too dry the night before.


My goals were to meet or beat my total from Raw Nats, which I came close to. Didn’t beat overall lbs, but I did beat my wilks by just a little bit.

SQUAT: I was too nervous. My heart was pounding and I couldn’t get in control of my feels until halfway through bench.

  1.  140KG / 308# – Opened low and went full potato. I’m a hot mess.
  2. Gave myself the option to take 147.5(325#) or 150(330#) for the 2nd attempt. Took the lower one. This was a bit of a grind.
  3. Gave myself three options: 150, 152.5, 155 lbs. I took the lowest after the grind on the 2nd attempt and wished I put another 2.5 KG on even though it was a little sloppy.

BENCH: Finally feeling a little more confident. Don’t want to wuss out after squat. Felt like my coach wasn’t as confident in my bench as I am, but for fear of being proven wrong, I stuck with the attempts I was given.

  1. 67.5KG/ 148# – This was too easy. I feel like a total tool.
  2. 72.5/ 159# – This should have been my opener. Oh well, at least it looks good
  3. 77.5/ 170# – I wish I put another 2.5-5 KG’s on this attempt. I’ll smoke it next time.

DEADLIFT: After leaving weight on the platform all day, at this point I’m determined not to wuss out. I’m taking all the weight I left earlier. (I now regret these feelings)

  1. 145KG/ 319# – This was solid. Good opener
  2. 155/ 341# – Shook a little bit at the top, but I felt like this was a good 2nd attempt
  3. 162.5/ 358# – I should have cut this by 2.5 KG. Didn’t take enough time to pack my lats and the bar came out too far in front of me. I also maybe almost passed out. Ugh.


Final Thoughts:

This was a really fun weekend – I was looking forward to hanging out with all my friends just as much as I was looking forward to assessing my progress from the past few months. In addition, I got to spend a lot of time with World Champion Alicia Webb. We have a similar circle, but I haven’t gotten to spend as much 1:1 time with her as I would have liked. I learned a lot about her calm demeanor, and would encourage everyone to try and find a meet where they’re the little fish in the big pond. There’s so much you can learn just from watching other lifters with more experience. She beat me by nearly 100 wilks points. Overall it was a great weekend. I’m a little disappointed by my attempt selection, but overall happy with the way it went.

I’m so hungry for nationals. Ready to get at it once these DOMS go away.


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