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Thread: How do you get "right," psychologically, before you attempt a heavy lift?

  1. #1
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    I was making fantastic progress on all of my lifts until recently. Now, out of the blue, I'm afraid to lift heavy. I mean, I've always gotten a little anxious before a heavy lift, but now I totally psych myself out before I even attempt it. Seriously, I see 5 plates (500 lbs) on a squat bar and I KNOW I can't do it even though I did it, just a few weeks ago, for multiple reps!


    A few weeks back, my buddy forgot to put a clip on the bar and as soon as I stepped away from the rack the weight slid off one side. Maybe that sparked this fear? It was loud and I was startled but I put the weight back on and finished my set.


    What's going on?!

    I began this Primal journey on December 30th, 2009 and in that time I've lost over 125 LBS.

  2. #2
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    I guess it is like falling of a bike. Cut back your weight, move into a power cage if you weren't using one and continue. Bring your confidence back up.


    The body and mind will do amazing things to protect itself from perceived or real trauma or muscle failure.


  3. #3
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    Use a power rack until your confidence comes back


  4. #4
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    Your psyching yourself out. The mind-muscle connection is amazing, and just thinking you can't do it sub-consciously will have an effect.


    I usually do what I like to call the mini meditation. Close your eyes and ONLY think of why you need to lift this weight, and what your doing this all for. Once you feel the moment is right open your eyes and lift away.


    In Pursuit of Healthiness, Only to Achieve Happiness!: www.livingnotsurviving.com

  5. #5
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    And think about how badass you'll feel after lifting all that weight!

    On a mission to help others master movement, build unbreakable strength, & eat MORE food (can't beat that.) Weekly fitness, health & nutrition articles at indulgentfitness.com.

  6. #6
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    And listen to some loud music!


    I don't listen to them on any given day, but my preferred lifting music is some slipknot. Check out "The Blister Exists". It's pretty much my hardcore, pump up, blood boiling, time to kill someone (or some weights!) song.


  7. #7
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    Yep, visualize the successful lift many times throughout the day. Don't allow yourself to visualize failure. Assume you will succeed.


    And for really heavy lifts, of course, always have spotters and/or a power rack just in case -- for physical safety, not mental support.

    Nightlife ~ Chronicles of Less Urban Living, Fresh from In the Night Farm ~ Idaho's Primal Farm! http://inthenightlife.wordpress.com/

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  8. #8
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    Practice your form, check the equipment, and go for it! :-) Its easy to hurt yourself doing heavy weight on a squat, so your mind is rightly telling you to use extreme caution. All the other things that could happen are out of your control, so take counsel from your fear and use it to your advantage for the cortisol surge :-)


  9. #9
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    I'm with BarbeyGirl. Visualization is pretty damn powerful. Hear the music you'd typically listen to should that be the case. Feel your adrenaline and endorphins rage in you. Imagine a few sneaked glances from others around you at this attempt - the energy they have as they also want to see you succeed.


    My biggest squat load was done, oddly enough, while I heard Mel Gibson give his Braveheart Freedom speech. It was powerful for me that day. But I visualized the hell out of succeeding and didn't allow my head a chance to see failure.


  10. #10
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    A great book about heavy lifting is "THe Purposeful Primitive" by Marty Gallagher.


    There is a section that focuses on the mind. In a nutshell it's meditation/visualzation in between sets.


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