I haven’t done a lifting thread for a while so let’s bang one out for Sunday. For those new to the site, I am referring to power lifting whenever I discuss this topic. The big 5 – clean, deadlift, squat, standing press and bench press.

Back in June I was at a very good point; the strongest that I have ever been. At a body weight of just over 70kg I was squatting 112.5kg as an example. At 48 years of age that ain’t too shabby. It took a fair bit of work to get to that point and bugger all time to lose it.

Your body doesn’t care what you’ve done or where you’ve been at. It only cares about the here and now.

Due to work pressures I have found it very difficult over the last few months to keep to my regular 3 days a week in the gym. On average I have been managing 2 days, sometimes such as this week I only was able to get there a single time. As a result my gains have gone down. My squat is now at 90kg. And that is a, I’m panting for breath and getting dizzy after 5 reps, 90kg.

Still, if I think back to only a couple of years ago 90kg was a fantasy. So it helps to keep this in perspective.

But that’s hard. You can easily get discouraged with a drop in strength like this. And all too often discouragement leads to avoidance. And avoidance means that one day you realise that you haven’t stepped foot in the gym in six months.

Thankfully I am not at that point, but I have caught myself a few times trying to talk myself out of going on days when going to the gym is perfectly doable. This is the big danger area and it is extremely useful to be well aware of it. The monkey chatter in your head that tries to convince you that today you should just head home, relax, put your feet up and have a beer. It’s been a tough week, you’ve been working really hard. Hell, man; you deserve it.

We don’t deserve shit. All we deserve is the pain that we get when we lift. The pain is the sign that this is what you need. The pain is what must be welcomed so as to stay strong and healthy. In the last couple of months the vast majority of my colleagues have been sick at one point or another. I am one of the very few that hasn’t gone down with something and I put that down to my personal strength from lifting.

I haven’t done a 3 day week at the gym since July. This week I will try again. Maybe I will get there, maybe I won’t. But just showing up is half the battle a lot of the time.

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