Powerlifting is a strength sport during which you compete in the squat, bench press and deadlift. Many powerlifters climb weight classes over their career, and the training is a large part of this. Diet is also critical: No matter how hard you train, if you do not eat to support your training, you will not grow.
Squat heavy without rounding your back. Hold the barbell securely on your upper back, not your neck, and descend until your legs at the tops of your hips are below the level of the tops of your knees; then stand back up. This lift must be practiced extensively -- as often as three or four times a week.
Deadlift heavy without excessive volume. Deadlifting puts a strain on your entire system that can be hard to recover from. Deadlift no more than once per week.
Bench with good technique using a variety of repetition ranges and speeds. You must learn to develop good technique, but also accelerate the bar so that you do not get stuck under heavier weights. Train this lift as often as three times a week.
Train your supporting musculature. Most important are your back, triceps and hamstrings. These muscles generate power for the three lifts and respond well to higher repetitions sets in the six to 12 repetition range. Do not overtrain these muscle groups; twice a week is enough.
Eat protein from whole foods such as red meat, milk and eggs. Chicken and fish can be a pleasant change of pace. You need at least twice as much protein as a non-lifter.
Consume plenty of fat in your diet. A diet too low in fat will limit your ability to produce testosterone, which is the hormone most responsible for muscle growth. Get most of your fats from healthy sources such as olive oil and unsaturated fats.
Eat enough carbohydrates to give you energy to train. Your carbohydrate intake will vary with your training volume, so adjust it up or down depending on how much you train. Get most of your carbohydrates from fruits, whole grains and vegetables.
Consume essential fatty acids in your diet. Sources are oily fish, nuts and seeds, as well as supplements. Essential fatty acids are required for muscle protein synthesis.
Supplement your diet with protein and carbohydrates immediately after each workout. Following a workout, consuming a combination of protein and carbohydrates can increase your recovery and promote muscle growth.
- "Journal of Steroidal Biochemistry"; Decrease of Serum Total and Free Testosterone During a Low-Fat High-Fiber Diet; Enko Hämäläinen, et al.; July 1983
- "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition"; Dietary Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation Increases the Rate of Muscle Protein Synthesis in Older Adults: a Randomized Controlled Trial; Gary I. Smith, et. al.; Februrary 2011
- "Journal of Applied Physiology"; Early Postexercise Muscle Glycogen Recovery is Enhanced with a Carbohydrate-protein Supplement; John L. Ivy, et al.; October 2002