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blainesumnerphotoThree weeks ago I traveled to St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands to compete at the NAPF Regional Championships. My only goal of this meet was to earn my spot at the World Games in 2017. The top male lifter, scored by Wilks, receives an invite to the World Games in Wroclaw, Poland next summer. I knew just getting my openers would be good enough to earn best lifter, so I took some token openers and jumped to my regular openers and finished the meet with a 1,025 lb. Squat, 783 lb. Bench Press, and 717 lb. Deadlift for a 2,525 lb. Total. This is 278 lbs. below my total from the Arnold (2,803#) but I just needed to hit my openers on this day.

The next meet coming up for me is the 2016 IPF World Championships in Orlando, FL on November 19th. This will be the biggest meet of my life simply because winning the World Championship last year in Luxembourg barely eluded me.

My training cycle for this competition has started out well and I’ve squatted 1,025 lbs, bench pressed 805 lbs, and deadlifted 805 lbs already in the first two weeks of my training cycle before ramping up to heavier weight in the next few weeks. I currently have 10 more weeks until the championships arise which will come upon me extremely fast. My body is not entirely healthy and I’ve been racking up a few injuries over the past few years because I compete too often and never let myself rest. But I will not let injuries slow me down from winning the World Championship this year. There have been a lot of rumors and speculation on who may be competing in the SHW weight class and who may not be coming. But none of this matters to me or affects me. It goes in one ear and out the other. I am preparing for all of the best superheavyweights in the world to be there and in full health, so I will be bringing my A game.

I will not predict numbers or reveal my goals for this meet, simply that I will win and I will do whatever numbers I need to in order to win.

I look forward to November 19th and to step on the platform at the IPF World Championships and represent my country.

You can find Blaine Sumner’s website at https://www.blainesumner.com/. Blaine offers customized programming and coaching services, in addition to his highly successful e-book, “Gorilla Warfare”.

HISTORY OF POWERLIFTING, WEIGHTLIFTING, AND STRENGTH TRAINING PART 92: ’TIS THE SEASON? Part One
By Dr. Ken

The title of this blog, or article as I continue my slow and agonizing journey into the jargon of the modern computer era, does not refer to “Deck the Halls,” the mid-1800s song about Christmas nor to the few months preceding the actual Christmas holiday. Once again dating myself and clearly attaching the label of “older guy” to my lifting singlet, I would like to inform the younger generations of lifters that there used to be an actual “Powerlifting Season.”

Both major and minor sports, athletic activities at all levels from Pop Warner and Little Leagues through collegiate programs, and the relatively obscure amateur activities like the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (Roller Derby) has “a season.” A competitive season in any sport allows one to build their strength and skill to the point that they can compete for and hopefully win a specific championship. An off-season then allows for rest, recovery, the healing of injuries, and the opportunity to plan a program of preparation that will allow for the obviation of weak or negative aspects of one’s performance. With the advantage of a playing and coaching background in football and having sons who played college football and now coach at the highest levels of college and professional football with the added perspective of my family’s participation spanning a number of decades, allow me to explain how “the seasons” actually were and remain structured and then apply the concept to powerlifting.

The traveling to America part two 2010

As I wrote in the first part. I have been in America in 2005 and this trip was very eventful. Exactly five years later, I again went to America for the world championship, but now on the bench press, which took place in the state of Texas the city of Killen.

The long wait at the airport

The long wait at the airport

First thing in Moscow, I was expecting the doping control and the procedure for obtaining a U.S. visa at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. All this I was successful and ready to go in the United States.

The first adventure was waiting for me and my friends on the national team of Russia on powerlifting at the airport, after check in for the flight to Washington, we the entire crew and all passengers were taken off the plane and cancelled the flight due to a malfunction of the aircraft. Many of the passengers began to take the tickets and fly through other countries, through Japan, knowing that we’ll have to fly through half of the globe, but for business time can’t wait.

Konstantin Pavlov at 35th Annual IPF Championships

Konstantin Pavlov at 35th Annual IPF Championships

My first trip to America took place in 2005, the trip was for the world championship powerlifting Federation IPF, known all over the world the city of Miami. The trip was very exciting, because it had to defend the world title for the tenth time in his career, and I wanted to see and touch the American way of life.

Arriving in Moscow, was poisoned in the delegation of the Russian team at the American Embassy in Moscow, was surprisingly full rigor and at the same time polite and cultured appeal to any of us. Having received the approval for the visa, was very happy and exciting.

Next was the troublesome fees of a trip, had to fly more than 10 hours to the US, we flew through the city of Atlanta.

And finally, it’s official, I’m part of a national team of Russia on powerlifting, sitting in the plane, with his friends on the team and coaching staff and we’re flying in the United States. Waiting time the plane landed. Finally, we flew over the ocean and sat in the airport in Atlanta and went to the front Desk for domestic flights to the city of Miami.

Konstantin Pavlov (RUS) bench pressing 167.5kg in the 56kg class at the 2002 Men's European Powerlifting Championships

Konstantin Pavlov (RUS) bench pressing 167.5kg in the 56kg class at the 2002 Men’s European Powerlifting Championships

Born in the USSR in a small town of miners in Siberia, the city of Leninsk-Kuzneckom, Kemerovo region, April 28, 1973. Born, like many children with average indicators, height 52 cm and weighing 3 kg 600 grams. Grew up a bright child in a family of Siberians. By profession my parents railwaymen. Father Pavlov Vladimir Vasilyevich born in 1939 worked on the railway for 45 years and is now retired. My mother Evgenia Matveyevna Pavlova was born in 1946 worked on the railway transport for 35 years and is also retired now.

In my childhood I had been ill and the father and mother treated me with folk remedies, accustomed to tempering, but the sport helped me to get stronger and become healthy. The first sport I began to be engaged professionally it was karate, 1989 in the USSR. At that time, martial arts, and powerlifting, and bodybuilding was banned in the Soviet Union and had to deal with in the basement or home. In karate I had a trainer and after a year of training me in the school where I studied, had to study for finals and I missed 2 weeks of training, after which a strict coach denied me the training.

My wife and I have had the pleasure, agony, elation, disappointment, amazement, and disbelief in what we have experienced in the hundreds of meets we have competed in, directed, worked at, and observed. In brief, I can safely state that from the positive to negative, we have seen it all.

My perspective goes back before the organization of powerlifting as an official Amateur Athletic Union sport. In the early 1960s it was no more than a group of guys that decided to get together on a Saturday morning at a storefront gym or the local YMCA and take on those from another group of trainees in a specific list of lifts that everyone agreed to attempt.

If there is one individual who truly knows the inner workings of the York Barbell Company when those of us of “an older age” were at our frenzied peak of interest in the lifting game, it is Jan Dellinger.

Working at a number of different employment positions at “The Barbell,” Jan was privy to inside information and all of the scandalous stuff that the typical lifter would never know. Acquainted with a few of the big time York lifters and having the motivation to either hitchhike or drive the 440 mile round trip on a Saturday perhaps gave me a bit more insight than those who had to rely on Strength And Health or Muscular Development magazines for their York Team information, but Jan “knew,” he was part of the inner circle. Thus whenever I reference York in my lifting related commentary, I rely on his terrific memory to confirm facts, or to fill in the blanks. Relative to the Polish lifting shoes noted in the last blog/column, Jan wrote:

As a teenager who worked multiple after-school and weekend jobs, especially between football and track seasons, I had enough of “my own money” to purchase extra food and an occasional pair of large 50 or 100 pound plates to augment my axle, sewer covers, and fly wheels type of equipment. I also bought a pair of Polish weightlifting boots from the York Barbell Company when they made them available in perhaps 1962 or ’63.

In my mind, this made me “official,” a real lifter. Although I was not a competitive Olympic weightlifter, I had been in a few Odd Lift contests as a relatively young trainee and the red and white shoes gave me a feeling of authenticity.

SMALL CHANGES, BIG CAUTION, PART ONE

Everyone from my generation understands and accepts the fact that life is much different now than it was through the 1950’s, ‘60’s, and ‘70’s. The prevailing culture, economics, and all aspects of our social system are different. I wish to refrain from stating that any or all of it is “better,” “worse,” or “more or less the same as it was” because these judgments are subjective and linked to personal perspective. The above being true in my strongly held opinion, there can be little argument that as pre-teens and teenagers, “play” and athletics in an earlier era were a by-product of participant generated planning and energy. Typically, we were cut loose after an early breakfast on a Saturday morning and left to our own devices until we returned home for dinner perhaps eight or more hours later. This allowed “the adults” to tend to their own business in the only time they had from their work week (unless they also worked on Saturdays) and none of the adults were too concerned where the children were or what they were doing. It was assumed and the assumption was correct ninety-nine percent of the time that “the kids” were roaming the neighborhood and engaged in some sort of athletic game.

 

AS PER SHAKESPEARE, “TO COMPETE OR NOT TO COMPETE, THAT IS THE QUESTION”

Hand in hand with making New Year’s Resolutions come other questions. Certainly, if not an “official” resolution, most individuals view January 1st of any year as a new beginning, a new start to specific endeavors or goals, and an opportunity to re-focus organization and effort. For those interested in powerlifting, and I purposely chose that description, deciding to improve one’s lifts or a specific lift, is a commonly held resolution or goal. Whether agreeing or not with the premise put forth in last month’s article as per the late Reverend Robert Zuver’s quote, everyone can improve and every lift can be improved. The related question is, “Should I compete?” For those who are already competitive powerlifters, this is a no-brainer. The logical and obvious New Year’s Resolution is to “increase my total” since that is the point of ultimate judgment in our sport. There have always been and continue to be those competitive lifters who look down upon those that “lift” but don’t compete. Even if they begrudgingly give some respect to the hard and consistent work put into the gym activity of a non-competitive trainee, many competitive lifters hold themselves above those that train but do not compete.

 

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