The Euphoria of intense achievement hit me as I sat in my car after a heavy squat session. Just sitting, enjoying the emotion. I had just squatted 302.5kg for a life time personal best that had taken me 2 years to achieve since my last personal best of 300.5kg. Sure the number is cool, but the number means much less than the 2 years of bullshit I suffered through.
Cool Squat Bro, But What Is The Big Deal?
The big deal is training my fucking ass off week in and week out without missing sessions and having the feeling of getting absolutely no where over the 2 years due to injury, ignorance, ego and bad luck. I don't miss sessions no matter what state I am in, how I feel or what is going on in my life, I don't miss sessions, period. So you could imagine how frustrating it was to sacrifice so much to get little return. Yesterdays squat showed me that I didn't get little in return, I had received one of the most humbling life lessons I will ever have. I am now a lot wiser from it.
I will break this down quickly so I don't bore your brains out talking about myself. 8 months ago I stripped my squat back to 40kg. The first 6 months I barely went over 120kg on my squats, the end of 6 months I squatted 220kg beltless/wrapless. The 7th and 8th month was spent learning again after peaking for the 220kg. by the 8th month, I hit 270kg 2 weeks ago and I hit 302.5kg today with a belt and wraps back on. Obviously the potential had been there for a long time, strength just doesn't jump like that. Learning how to reach my potential was the key here.
They say when success comes it comes fast, I feel like this was a micro scale of that. I grinded my face off in the mud for 2 years, then within 2 weeks of each other I had squatted 270kg and then 302.5kg, I couldn't believe it. Even with hitting a 322.5kg deadlift 10 weeks ago for a WRPF Australian record, this squat trumps the sense of achievement.
I invested in becoming a student 8 months ago. I had dialed everything back, surrounded myself with great minds and coaches. I got rid of the belt and wraps to learn how to brace/breath properly and work on all my weaknesses. This was a very humbling process, I was just happy to be a student and learn more about the craft of Powerlifting and human movement. In turn this led to me having more knowledge as a coach as well.
A Humble Lesson.
SO, less about me now and more about you! I am sure you would agree that we are all in a rush these days. Be honest with yourself, have you ever caught yourself with road rage because of someone going slow even when you aren't going to be late? If I am honest I am a culprit of this haha.
Strength takes time... It really does, I have no other way to put it. When I hear someone say "I don't want to get to big" I just want to bash my head against the wall. I feel like saying "Yeah you better be careful, I started lifting 3 months ago and now all of a sudden I am 125kg body weight and lifting around 300kg on a regular basis." THIS HAS TAKEN ME 8+ YEARS YOU FUCKER. Your version of "getting to big" takes years of fucking hard work so go back to your fairy tail land of ignorance where hard work for you is getting up in the morning.
Anyway, I am getting carried away like I usually do in these blogs haha! Strength takes time, a 2.5kg - 5kg jump on a bench press in a 12 week cycle is pretty common, yet from experience people expect 10kg jumps every time. I have had people upset about finishing a training cycle and hitting PB's because they expected bigger jumps, greed perhaps? Oh, and it gets even better, as you get stronger it requires more work and the progress is slower.
"No matter how great the talent or the effort, some things just take time. You can't have a baby in 1 month getting 9 women pregnant' - Warren Buffet
Here is where the irony comes in to play. If you slow everything down, focus on your weaknesses and become a student you will progress faster than if you were bashing big weights all the time. Like I said before, I barely did my accessory squat work over 120kg and I squatted 302.5kg.. Go figure... There is a huge misconception that you have to bash big weights all the time to get stronger when in reality it can lead to over training, injury, chronic fatigue and lack of recovery.
Be calculated and smart. Enjoy the process as the process is all you have to hang on to at the end of the day. There is no destination that you get to and you are finally happy, be present and enjoy your training. To conclude I will leave you with two quotes that I preach all the time at UltraFS Gym to think about.
1. "The strongest people in the world are the ones that stay injury free the longest."
2. "Strengthening your strengths will lead to imbalances and injuries. Strengthening your weaknesses is how you truly get strong."
Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed the read don't forget to like it, share it, tag it! :)
- Jake Fisher