Wandered back to the hotel and found the bathroom floor was 'wet" and the toilet leaking - yuk. We were quickly moved to another room down the hall. Then it was off to the competitors meeting, only to find ASADA had commandeered the room to give everyone a good talking to about doping control. Sat that one out.... Steve asked how I was feeling and what my openers were going to be. I said I'd dropped my squat back to be sure of getting depth and he offered to watch during my warmups but only to say something *if* I was looking shallow. I let on that my opening deadlift would be 170 -175. He looked a little concerned "Thats only just short of your best isnt it?" "Not any more" I replied confidently with a smile. My pet lift! Then into the meeting to get our entry passes and goodies, tshirt, lifting times and rack heights. Back to the room decided that a hot bath was in order but no... the water was barely lukewarm and I could piss harder that the pressure coming out of the tap.. Ordered, received and ate a room service dinner while the bath was running. Rydges Nth Sydney - do something about your plumbing!!
Slept, restless, up at 5:15am to be whisked away to the comp venue at 6am for a 6.30 weight in and gear check - too early, bleary eyed, still half asleep and hungry. 66.7 kg. Phew! Thought I'd misplaced my knee wraps and went into a panic - to find them sitting snug in my bag all along! Finally something to eat, however the muesli bars that looked so appetising were rather dry and stuck to roof of my mouth. Topping it off, no decent coffee.... sigh.....
I was in the 2nd flight of lifters so as the first flight began lifting, I began warming up. Stressing out about getting my suit on and wanting to get the first squat out of the way, I warmed up to 120 and before I knew it, it was show time! Flustered at how quickly they were moving I was late getting my wraps on and they were a bit NQR. Disaster struck, I failed depth on my first attempt at 127.5kg - what a crap way to start! I knew it wasn't heavy, so I put in a 2nd attempt at 135kg. Better prepared this time, wraps on early! If anything a little too early and had to wait with my legs losing feeling. But it was a good confident squat - 3 whites. Third and final attempt, ever conscious of my depth and the failures in the gym over the past few weeks I hesitated and dropped the attempt to only 140 . I had to get this. I walked out to the rack and grabbed the bar. I deserved to be lifting this weight, it was mine, I'd put in the hard work - take it. Unracked the bar and pleasantly thought "Hey my shoulder doesn't hurt" "SQUAT" called the ref, big breath and down I went, woo-hoo and back up - 2 white lights! Passed!
Feeling a little more relaxed by now but knowing that my toughest lift was coming up - Bench press. The warmups felt heavy and the shirt not tight enough, self doubt got the better of my and I lowered my opener to 82.5. I couldn't afford to bomb. The handout was a bit rough, and I struggled to steady the bar, but I got the lift, still in the competition but confidence was draining fast. Still, stupidly, I went for 90kg on my 2nd attempt. Again, bad handout, bar wobbling and - red lights. Attempt 3: 90kg again and again a fail - CRAP! Would anyone believe me that I'd gotten 90kg in training for the past 3 weeks? Well I guess Jen would. The handouts messed her up too and she only got her opener at 85kg - disappointing 'cos her 90kg presses in the previous weeks were so strong! I thought for sure she had 95kg coming.
Finally onto the deadlift - yay. So cocky! I'd seen the Black Agents notify a couple of girls already so I thought I was in the clear, so I warmed up my deadlifts right in front of them - with utter contempt! Steve tapped me on the shoulder, a gentle reminder not to slam the bar down.... :-) Last warmup at 165kg and then onto the platform. Good set up, back tight, calm.... big breath, reach down to the bar and PULL. Nice, 175kg - yeah baby! Good form. 2nd attempt in as planned - 185kg. The Agents moved in to watch the final lifts, I powdered my legs in front of them, sniffed up the ammonia (gawd damn cats piss) and off to the bar, set up perfectly again. Just as I began to pull the bar drifted forward and I was forced out of position, the bar was already coming off the floor. but not close enough to my legs, my back rounded and I had to grind up what felt like forever and locked it out, Every vertebrae in my back cracked in succession.... White lights! That's all that mattered. Leigh suggested only going for 190, but I stubbornly insisted that I would have an attempt at the masters national record. Attempt 3 - 193.5kg Steve came back to tell me that they wouldn't accept my attempt, it had to be a full 2.5kg increment because this was an open comp, only at a masters comp could I do a .5 increment, so he altered the attempt to 192.5 at which point I had a change of heart and really just wanted to do 190, but too late and 192.5 got loaded on the bar and my head want in the right place anymore. Out onto the platform, setup and as soon as I reached down I was out of position, no chance, I took hold of the bar and knew it wasn't coming with me from that position. But I was satisfied with the 185, its the one I'd counted on. No sooner had I got off the platform the Black Agents swooped down on me - Notified. Damn!
Spent, dehydrated, sweaty and excited. I started to get changed, stripped off the t-shirt to try to cool down, and started working the suit down, bit easier than the squat suit but still has to be peeled off the legs bit by bit. Sat down in all my glory, crop top and undies working the suit legs down by pulling at my fatty inner thighs when some random guy asked if I needed help. "To do what?" I asked "Get your suit off" he replied. "Ummm, no thanks, I'm right..." weirdo!
I couldn't believe it was over - so quickly and already contemplating "what next?"