So, the unit had a sports day (yay?) and we all got to sign up for different activities. I picked weightlifting, because I am too broken to run well and some of the events (poker, really?) were ridiculous. To be perfectly honest, I just really wanted to know my max press.

I wasn’t really expecting competition rules, but having experienced them I think I am inclined to use those to determine my maximums in future. After all, they are recognized standards, so… yeah. I did pretty piss-poor in the squat (which I never do), and my form was bad (of course) so my back was a bit sore when I was done. I decided that I would not do the deadlift later, noting that I was more likely to injure myself than successfully move a respectable weight.

Instead I focused on the bench press. I had to lift the bar off the racks ourselves, lower it down until it made contact with my chest, and hold it there for about a second or so until being told to press. Then I had to lift it steadily (without dipping) and without touching the rack hooks until I reached full arm extension and was instructed to rack the bar.

Noting that holding the bar for a second before starting to push was going to have an effect on my max, I started with 225lbs, which I lift with relative ease, to get a feel for it. Sure enough, 225 was fairly effortless. Everyone else went and then I had my second lift, for which I did 245 – this was also pretty easy. After another lift for everyone else, I had my third and final lift. I felt pretty safe trying for 270, so I went with that. About halfway through pushing, I realized I had this one. It was my cleanest lift, and in retrospect I wish I had tried for 275 – I had just enough oomph unused that I could have managed the extra 5 lbs. Overall, I think for the benching portion I may have come in somewhere around 4th out of 12 people (only one of whom looked like he could have done it professionally – the dude pressed 335 lbs, and gave me my new goal of pressing with 3 45 lb weights on either side of the bar for a 315 lb press). Not too bad, since it was the only part I cared about.

The biggest thing it did was give me some new found confidence with regard to my bench pressing. I’m looking forward to rolling into 230 this coming Monday.

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