In powerlifting athletes obviously train all year round but a competition cycle will normally last between 8-12 weeks. It is quite normal to do no training the week before a competition as muscles need rest leading for the big day.
During a competition cycle I will never do single repetitions - these are kept for the competition - on my heaviest set I will always do 2-3 reps with any given weight. Although one week before a competition I will go to the gym and go through my opening lifts on the Squat, Bench Press and Deadlift to make sure they are not too difficult.
It is important that you peak on the day of the competition and to do this I always bear in mind the words of the Great Bill Kazmaier "Never do more in the gym, than you can better next time."
If my opening attempt on the Squat is to be 230kg, I will start at a light weight 12 weeks before and gradually add 5kg per week until 2 weeks before the competition I am up to £230kg for 2 repetitions.
The reason I will do 2 reps is so that at competition time, I will know that my opening attempt with 1 rep is going to be easy. I will normally do set of 5 reps and drop down to 2-3 reps about 5 weeks before a competition.
My training week is as follows:
Many people think that this is not enough time spent in the gym. But I find any more than this and I feel tired and overtrained. When training hard and heavy it is as important to rest as it is to train.
Like all things in life sport takes hard work and dedication. I always say to people, if I can do it, anyone can.
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