January 23

IrishPF Leinster Open 2017 – How My Day Went

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It was a bit of a mad weekend at RevFit HQ. We’d 18 lifter compete at the Irish Powerlifting Federation’s Leinster Open over the course of Saturday and Sunday.

As soon as I’m finished this post, I’ll be putting together a team meet report, but since we’d SO many lifters, that’s gonna take a while.

2 or 3 weeks back, my participation was in doubt. I posted the following message in the IrishPF discussion group;



​​This is one I’d love to hear more from the higher ranking lifters on…

​Call this week 23 of prep.

For the first 20 weeks I had a dream of a time. Trained hard. Ate well. Recovered. Smashed PRs.

Over xmas I was away and had to condense some training.

Now this week I’ve been wiped out since Sunday with illness. Did a very brief training session that went very badly today (82% squat doubles).

I’ve done 2 full sessions and a half session in the last 14 days.

​Effectively, I’ll probably get 1 or MAYBE 2 weeks of training done during my peak for the jan comp.

​As it stands, I’m very ill, broken and feel like there’s no point competing since;

​- i’m fully recovered and have probably hit whatever peak I’m gonna hit as a result

​- pushing now will probably make me sick again which i can scarely afford running my own biz

​- it doesn’t make sense to do a comp that’s not a true reflection of the last few weeks and months of training

​I 100% realise and accept training has not been “wasted”, I’ve hit numerous all time PRs during the cycle and felt amazing for it. But now I feel like I’ve just over shot.

​How do you guys manage feelings like and how long does it normally take to recover from illness?


I got some great suggestions from the lads who replied on the post (see… even I still ask for help!) and adjusted a few things accordingly;

– I scrapped the remainder of the peak and made the resolution that whatever happens, happens. I’ll lift what I can on the day

– I decided to enter the Ulster Open as well since I’d have 7 full weeks of peak prep for it

– Based off entering Ulster, I knew Leinster would be a chance to secure my spot at the national champs (top 7 or so totals qualify) and hit a PR total and good bench

– Having the confidence of a PR comp in a sub standard condition at Leinster, I resolved to not miss any lifts, keep a bit in reserve on squat and deadlift, and plan to go HAM at Ulster

– If I go to Ulster and have a ‘mare while missing big PR attempts, it doesn’t matter too much since nothing’s on the line.​​​​​​​​

Setting up my final deadlift of the day

With all that in mind, h​​here’s how my day went.

Overall, I was very happy with my lifting.

The best thing to do is just show a vid. So here it is – final attempts only. Finished up with a 240kg squat, 160kg bench and 270kg deadlift at 99.4kg.

A video posted by James Hanley (@revfit_james) on

The squat third attempt looks like an opener because I made a balls of my second attempt. I got all off balance which meant I needed to go slightly more conservative rather than take the 245 I was planning on.

It’s GREAT to finally have the 160kg comp bench monkey off my back. I missed it once in comp, and it was always a relatively big number for me mentally. Now it’s just another attempt that should be relatively guaranteed any day of the week.

I only took 2 deadlifts to preserve recovery and build towards the Ulster open as the end of Feb. My current gym PR is 280 – all going to plan I should go beyond that on February 26th.

As you’ll have seen, the 270 was comfortable but I was starting to get tunnel vision during reps by that stage and while I would have got the 280 it would have been a dog fight and left me wrecked all week, which isn’t ideal with another comp on the horizon.​​

The total​ was enough to win the 105s and have the highest lifts of the day across all disciplines and weight classes on the Saturday, only 1 lifter on Sunday totalled more and scored a higher wilks overall.

There’s l​oads of amazing things to say about my revfit team, but that’s a much more exhaustive post. This one is selfishly all about me.

As always – major gratz and appreciation to spotters, refs, the table and “setter uppers” (and my camera crew!). The IrishPF, once again, outdid itself.


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