For the past few months I have been encountering problems with the deadlift. I would dread every time I looked at the site and saw deadlift as the lift. The reason I felt this way was because every time I would leave the gym after deadlifts I would think A) every single set felt heavy or B) my lower back is sore.
Why did this movement, that I once loved, feel so crappy ? I tried to think what I was doing wrong. I know my diet is good and I am sleeping well. I have decent strength in my lats, my set up is consistent, and I’m keeping my core tight. Having this internal battle was taking a toll on me mentally as well. Going into a work out already thinking “this is not going to be a good day/lift/wod” will set you up for failure. I guess you could say I was losing my mojo for this lift.
Then, a light bulb suddenly turned on for me last week. Deadlifts weren’t programmed for the strength portion of class last week so I already thought it was a great week. The only deadlifts programmed was in a metcon on Friday. As we were warming up to find an appropriate weight, Sean watched my set up. Then he said the words I’ll never forget: Set up one inch closer to the bar.
I replied, “My shoelaces are right under the bar though.” He replied, “From the side angle you are too far back.” So with that simple instruction I did as I was told. During the course of the metcon the weight felt good and I had no soreness after class or the following day. This was convincing, but I wanted to put Sean’s genius idea of moving just a tad bit closer to the bar to the test. This last week when we deadlifted for the strength portion, I did just that. My sets were 255, 295, and 335. All three sets did not feel as heavy as in the prior months and I experienced zero soreness after.
I thanked Sean after doing the DL for the advice. He said, “Sometimes it’s the little things.” He is definitely right. Sometimes we put a lot of pressure on ourselves when things aren’t going right in the gym. We tend to forget that it could be the smallest of an issue as to why it’s not going right. So to all my CFI’ers: remember to take time to focus on all the cues–no matter how small or big–for each lift so we can get the optimal success that we all are looking for.
A big Happy Birthday Shoutout to Celina! Celina joined Intrepid a couple of months ago and has been going strong ever since. We’re looking forward to great times with Celina and her husband Patrick. Have a great birthday!
Deadlifts 1×5 or Wendler
c/o with Deficit Deadlifts (~50% work set)
6 minute Assistance Work Stations:
Partner Glute Ham Raises
Banded Kettlebell Swings