Deficit Deadlifts feeling strong tonight

I usually don't deadlift heavy two weeks in a row but with my business trip taking me away from any real gym time next week, I decided I'd go heavy again and recover over the next week.  Going into the workout, my back felt a little tired but that's never a good predictor for me.

Sure enough, my warm up sets felt just fine.  I'm still deadlifting off a slight deficit (2") to build speed through the floor and I'll keep the deficit for another 5-6 weeks.  Since I did three doubles at 515 last week, I decided to up the intensity a little bit to keep things pushing along.  First double with 495 was very smooth.  I'm really starting to find a good starting position that allows for a relaxed upper back and strong leg drive off the floor.  Set 2 was a double with 520 lbs and it was smooth and fast.  My last set was a double with 545 lbs.  I knew I could get this but because I had only worked with deficit singles with this weight during my last training cycle, I still had to focus.  The first repetition was nice but the second one was a bit of a grinder. Still, I accomplished my goal of three doubles with a higher volume and intensity than last week's workout.

Deficit Deadlifts:  315x3, 405x3, 495x2, 520x2, 545x2

I then removed the deficit and broke down the bar to 455 lbs.  I did three speed singles with 8 shrugs at the top.  These felt faster than last week and I knew it was due to improvements in my starting position.

Barbell Shrugs with a floor pickup:  455x8, 455x8, 455x8

As of late, my deadlift is feeling very good, as good as it's ever felt actually.  From the start of my return to powerlifting training in late 2007 until very recently, my deadlift has always felt weak.  Not weak in terms of what I was lifting but that it always felt as if I could pull harder than my body would allow.  When the weight got to limit levels, my body would shut down even if I had the desire to pull harder.  My competitions up until this most recent one had always finished up with my third attempt deadlift barely breaking off the floor if at all.

When I was able to grind my third attempt deadlift off the floor and then complete the lift this past February 11th, it was a significant breakthrough.  I finally started to feel as if I could pull as hard as I could without my body shutting down early.  Now, I feel like if I pull and can't complete a lift, it's because I'm not strong enough, not because something doesn't feel right.  Going forward, I'll have to be careful with scheduling my workloads because it's easy to break something when you feel strong but I'd much rather be in this position than where I was the previous 3 years.

I finished up the session with light overhead presses and face pulls.  Like last week, I did a gentle weight progression while keeping repetitions constant at 5 per set.  Instead of dropping down for my last set, I increased one more time and wasn't able to get 5 reps.  Because it was supposed to be "light" day for overhead presses, I hadn't planned on pushing the intensity but after how well deadlifts went and knowing I was due for a week's deload, I decided to challenge myself.

Overhead Presses:  135x5x2 sets, 165x5, 170x5, 175x5, 180x5, 185x4
Face Pulls:  45x15x3 sets.


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