Letter of Intent Day – 2011

At the end of 2009 Gant had a solid idea to force some of you to commit to…something. He called it “Letter of Intent Day”, and it was supposed to incite some of you to figure out what your training goals were for the near future (first half of the year at least). A lot of you responded with quasi-vague goals that sorta pissed me off. Go to the bottom of this post and read Gant’s goals for 2010 (for good measure, read the second post too). His goals were specific to the point that there was no question whether or not he would accomplish them or not. He didn’t set a time line for his annual goals (the goals were varied to the point where they couldn’t all be done at once), but most of you should.

Also notice how the emphasis is on competition. Lifting in your local gym or your garage is okay, but it doesn’t place demands on you the way that competition does. It requires that you funnel your training into a single event that is judged by officials who have a standardized way of critiquing you. Even if you were to compete in mountain biking (one of Gant’s goals last year), you would still be put in a vulnerable position where you are competing against other people…for real. Right before the starting gun you will feel a surge of adrenaline and increased heart rate whether you are about to start pedaling, squatting, or running. Do yourself a favor and commit to some kind of competition related goal this year. How you place is irrelevant; it’s how you perform under duress and how you improve. Gym PR’s are not the same thing as meet PR’s. It’s time that you learned why.

Post your specific goals to the comments. I don’t care about hearing that you want to squat 400 or 500 pounds this year — tell me what you plan on doing in a meet. Training is irrelevant — by definition it implies it’s simply the process of working towards an end goal.

It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena…who strives…who spends himself…and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.

–Teddy Roosevelt

49 thoughts on “Letter of Intent Day – 2011

  1. 200lb Bodyweight by the end of February at the latest
    Compete in at least 2 meets, maybe a 3rd
    Squat over 475, Bench over 300, and Deadlift over 550, in a meet

  2. Entering my first meet this month and competing in a push pull. Setting my last attempt at 500 for deadlift (currently 455). Bench, my last attempt will be 300 (unsure on max).

    Bodyweight near 200 by March when I go to England on the 6th.

  3. 200kg total at Oly meet president’s day wknd in Feb (current training total = 180). I think this is feasible as long as my training stays consistent and injury free.

    Would like to qualify for AO or Nat’ls in 2012.

  4. -Compete in the Missouri State Games this summer in Powerlifting. This will be my first barbell competition.

    -Compete in an Oly meet in the last quarter of the year.

    That’s it for this year, because I still have a lot of room to grow, both in size and strength, so I don’t want to take too much time out of training this year. Next year, when I’ve more than likely exhausted my LP, I’ll try to compete more.

  5. I am competing in at least 2 meets this year. The first meet will be the Navy Open in Annapolis, MD in February.

    I want to break the 110kg Maryland state squat record of 227.5kg (501.4 lbs) and would like to also break the 110 kg MD state Deadlife record 272.5 kg (600.8 lbs) before NOLANPOWER moves up to 110 kg weight class. At least get my name in the record books for a little while.

  6. I’m moving up from 165# to 181# this year (USAPL), and my first meet will be at the end of February (Virginia Open).
    I know I am not ready to set the record in the Bench for 40-44 Masters, but I plan to set state records for Squat, Dead and Total.

  7. 2010 years Goals:
    -Compete in either a PL meet or Oly meet or both. – FAIL
    -PL Meet would probably be at Sunshine State games in Dec. – Fail
    -Compete in the Dunedin Sprint Triathlon in June. – Fail
    -Get a 70”s Big t-shirt early 2010 – Success

    2011 Goals:
    -Compete in Powerlifting meet.
    -Squat 350 lbs, Deadlift 450 lbs,Bench 250 lbs
    -Play on a Rugby team in Fall

    I was only successful in 1 of my goals from last year. Around March I decided I no longer had any desire to do the triathlon, if that counts for anything. I also may not have competed in any barbell events last year but I did start playing on a competitive men’s league soccer team.

    Next years goals WILL be completed.

  8. Compete in the following and place top 5 in my divison in at least one of them:

    Paxton Strongman Slam 3 (June or July)

    MA State Strongman Championship (September)

    Paxton Strongman 7 (December)

  9. Competed in my first PL meet in 2010, but had a poor performance. Goals for 2011:

    Drop down to 100kg class (competed in 110 in Nov)
    In a PL meet: Squat 500, Bench 350, Dead 500
    Compete in my first Oly Meet

  10. I want to do at least 8 highland games this year. I did 6 or 7 in 2010. I want to get my light hammer to consistantly better 60′ (current PR is 63′ but average more like 55′) and my WOB consistantly 10ft or better. Also I want my 2011 ranking to better my 2010 ranking, which was in the top 36% of North American women.

    This is sweet. To my knowledge, you’re more experienced doing these than any other reader. If you’d like to do a write up or interview with me, let me know.


  11. Here are the goals i posted on facebook right before new year’s:

    1. 500 lb squat
    2. 1300 lb powerlifting total in the 220 lb weight class. don’t care how the bench/deadlift split up.
    3. Sub-60 sec 400m
    4. Start the girl in sports, which probably means soccer since she’s 3

    #s 1 and 2 didn’t say it, but i meant for those to happen in competition. #3 is just to keep me honest with the conditioning i guess. #4 obviously has nothing at all to do with training, but honestly is probably the one i am most looking forward to.

  12. First OL meet on February 26 – Qualify for both Masters Pan American Games and Worlds at this meet.
    Compete in 3 more North Carolina OL meets in 2011.
    Compete in Masters Nationals, Pan American Games, and Worlds.
    First PL meet on April 16 – Squat 230 lbs at this meet.

  13. Had to withdraw from my first PL meet scheduled at the end of this month for life reasons. Goal is to compete in my first PL meet before the end of May, and total 1100, with at least a 225 bench and 475 deadlift in the 198 weight class.

  14. Goals 2011: Squat 550, Bench 350, Dead 666 for 1566 total at USAPL Raw Nationals August 2011.

    Coaching Goals 2011:
    1) get the big dawg to Squat 418, Bench 292, Dead 523 for a 1233 total.

    2)get the new girl to have perfect technique in the powerlifts and total over 450 lbs.

  15. Had 3 comps in 2009. (2 strongman, 1 PL) Had 1 in 2010 (Oly)

    Actively working on recovery from a right knee injury I suffered during the summer.

    Compete at least twice in 2011. 1 Oly, 1 PL (and Strongman if I have the implements to train with.)

    Follow up my Rookie of the Year Baseball performance with an MVP on the way to the championship.

    Play Fall season rugby and wreck timid potential tacklers Lomu style.

    Get leaner at 220 (the rugby will help).

  16. Oh, and continue to dominate the yoga class I just went to for the first time last Saturday.

    I may not have been able to hold all of the positions better than anyone in the class, but I definitely had the best beard and shortest shorts.

  17. I have 3 Oly meets planned this year and a 100k snatch and 130k c&j for the first meet in June. Now I’ll probably have to adjust once I get there but I’d like to finish the year at a 250k total. On top of that I’m going to jump to the next weight class currently at 94k looking to compete in the 105’s.

  18. My 2011 Goals:

    First PL Meet – Maine Games – March 26th:

    Squat – 350
    Bench – 235
    DL – 350

    I may change these numbers based on how I do leading up to comp. Since strength training I’ve only done sets of 5, I’ll get a feel for heavy triples and singles as the date draws near.

    I’d like to find another PL meet towards the end of the year and be able to total over 1000, hitting 400 on my squat. 400 would be a big goal.

    Also for 2011, compete in a Highland Games event. I have the contact info for the guy that runs the Maine Highland Games and plan on hitting him up for info in April.

    Final goal, get the wife under a bar this summer now that we’re done poppin out babies!

  19. Plan to compete in a PL meet, at either 242 or 220, I’m a jiggly 255 now. Scared to diet in fear of strength loss.

    best lifts to date in training are:
    SQ: 490
    BP: 320 (310 with a pause)
    DL: 500

    Want to total >1300 for my first meet.

  20. 1. Qualify for the BDFPA British National Powerlifting Championship. I’ll compete raw and drug free. Qualification is in 2 weeks at the Welsh Open. This will be my first ever meet. I am competing in the 90kg weight class. Aiming for a 145kg squat, 120 bench and 210 deadlift in competition. All of these would be PR’s by 5kg, but are reasonable after my progress using starting strength the past few weeks.
    2. Have and win an amatuer mma fight.
    3. Reach 105kg bodyweight
    4. Play American football for my university next academic year.

  21. Get some legit marks as a lightweight in Highland Games. (For those who don’t know, lightweight is anyone under 190 — give me a break, I’m 5’5″).

    This will be my first full season, and the first time I’ve tried to match my training to throws, so hoping for some good improvements (for me — none of my goal numbers would be anything special. at all.)

    Number goals, in competition (hoping these are a little conservative):

    Open stone — 32′
    Braemar — 26′ with a 22#-ish stone
    Light weight — 45′
    Heavy weight (56) — 22’6″
    Heavy weight (42) — 33′
    WOB (56) — 11′
    WOB (42) — 13′
    Sheaf — 24′
    Heavy hammer — 55′
    Light hammer — 75′

  22. My goal is to compete in at least four highland games this year:

    Ft. Worth North Texas Kickoff Games in feb.
    San Antonio highland games in march
    Houston highland games in may
    Texas Scottish festival in June

    Others if I can make it. Austin, Huntsville, etc.

    In addition to competing I want to move into B class. That’s a long road.

  23. Bench Press 360lbs in a raw meet.
    Regain my hip and leg strength asap, then enter either a raw full PL meet or Olympic meet to qualify for a national event.

    The 85kg OL total for Sr. Nationals is 253kg this year. The 198 PL total for Jr. Nationals is 1250. (I’m still jr in PL)
    My best lifts in either sport add to just 10-15lbs below these totals so I should be in easy reach of whatever I pick.

    Gym goal
    Clean & Press Bodyweight+50 (heading towards Starr’s BW+75 mark, reached bw+25 this past week and BW late last year)

  24. Squat 500 at the local Powerlifting meet in April (40lb increase from november meet).

    Press 200lbs in training by June.

    Run a 400m under :54 again at a track meet in this august (Have not been able to do this for a couple years).

  25. This is not a lifting goal, but it will affect my lifting: to sleep earlier/more in 2011. A handful of hours a night is not sufficient for a 17 year old. Time to bump it and get on a reasonable schedule.

  26. Filling out my entry for the 2011 Missouri State & Ozark Powerlifting/Benchpress Championships in March (USAPL). I hoping for around a 1300 total… and since my bench sucks, most of that will have to be squat and deadlift.

  27. Female age 35
    Goals…All un-equipped
    April 23
    NASA Oklahoma State
    BW 200 or less(hopefully)
    squat: 353 lbs
    bench: 204 lbs
    (^^might be a bit ambitious)
    DL: 375 lbs
    May 7
    AAU Oklahoma State
    Probably same attempts unless I’m feeling really good.
    Oct 15
    NASA Unequipped Nationals
    DL: 380

    Dec. ?
    AAU Tulsa Christmas Classic
    No clue what to shoot for at this point but I want to do a smaller meet just for fun.
    Well, they’re all for fun… ;)
    Noob gains have really slowed.
    Not sure how realistic these numbers are but it’s something to shoot for.
    Really enjoyed the conditioning subject last week. I’ve just started doing some basic
    barbell complexes.

  28. PRs from last week of training, late because I was swamped over the weekend:

    Press: 9×125
    Deadlift: 13×260
    Bench Press: 12×195
    Squat: 11×225

    Very pleased with all of them, but especially the squat, as 225 lbs was my 1RM in September — I’ve come a long way since then. As for goals, a 10×275 and a 2BW squat are on the docket, plus a BW press. Rugby season is now right around the corner, so conditioning is going to be a bigger portion of training now; but the biggest goal is to maintain or marginally improve my strength over the season. That means being in top condition going in, and managing recovery and training smarter.

  29. Complete the Rugby Season and dominate the Competition, take the So Cal Championship.

    Cut 20lbs to weigh in at 220. Put 50lbs on each lift to Squat 505lbs, Bench 385, Deadlift 555lbs.

    Compete in the USPF California State Championship in Venice on July 23rd, Open Raw Division.

    Actually train and correct my Oly Lift technique. Find an Oly Lifting meet in California to compete in, since I haven’t been able to find one yet.

  30. I don’t plan to compete in weightlifting. I compete in rugby and soccer. Therefore, my strength goals are mostly in training, so I’ll save them. My rugby related goals?

    Make a successful move from #8 to fly half. (6′ 195 and climbing again. up from 155 a year ago, and a max of 205 during the year)

    Hold a 65% conversion kick percentage (d3 rugby…)

    be in the top 3 fastest guys on the team during preseason fitness tests (we have times 40’s and 100’s)

    OH! we’re having a team weighlifting contest to determine fastest/strongest/most accurate with hands and boot!

    I want to deadlift 375 (training for a year. still a novice. current 1rm 345) squat 300 (current 1rm 285) and overhead press over 135 (current 1rm 115.) I know, I’m weak. I’m still new to the game. getting stronger.

    Oh, and I want to not embarrass myself when I dress up like pre 1996 sting for my wrestling themed party.

  31. My goal is to compete in the USAPL Richmond Open meet I’ve entered on April 16, probably at 198 lbs. I hope to hit all of my attempts including the following goals:

    Squat 400 lbs
    Bench 315
    Deadlift 500
    Total: 1215

    This is very ambitious considering it represents a 50 lb increase in my squat 1RM, 50 in bench 1RM and 100 in deadlift 1RM. Ambitious, but I think possible if I really keep my training, food and rest in order. My perhaps more reasonable goal, which I’ll fall back on if my training gets disrupted by an injury or something, is simply to net a 1100 pound total.

    I’ve actually got a list of 12 specific 2011 goals. I had 12 2010 goals and hit 10/12. The others are related to my work, relationships and hobbies.

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  33. Haven’t been on here much as I’ve been going through a divorce and getting ready to put my house up for sale (as well as looking for jobs, etc.), but goddammit I’ve still been lifting through it all as the gym is the only place that keeps me sane.

    Here are my goals for 2011:
    -Get a job
    -Finalize divorce and come out with as little debt as possible
    -Move out of here
    -Find a new powerlifting-friendly gym in my new place
    -Fuck shit up

    Lifting goals:
    -Total 1,300 raw in a USAPL meet. Which meet will depend heavily on where I end up.
    -Squat 500 in belt and knee wraps
    -Bench 315 raw again
    -Hit a new deadlift meet PR (either 534 raw or 606 in a suit)

  34. @ domjo
    i like that more sleep goal… this past week ive been sleeping more and it feels amazing. im sure recovery will be MUCH better if i can keep this sleep pattern going, although with my first baby coming july 27th, im guessing it will go to shit. still, im gonna do my best.

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