Andrew Serrano – Iron Rebel Classic Recap

The meet overall went well, I’m disappointed with it but I think that’s how you’re supposed to feel, it’s what drives improvement. The whole weight cutting process and rehydration went much more smoothly this time. Last time I overshot by 4 lbs and had trouble rehydrating. I didn’t feel like my legs were under me for squats and I didn’t break a real sweat until bench at the meet. This time I started the water on Monday like usual, but didn’t cut carbs until Wednesday. And then I followed the rest of the protocol outlined in Brian Carroll’s weight cutting guide. I made weight at 90kg exactly. I took in fluids for about three hours before eating and immediately felt pumped after breakfast. I was able to break a good sweat lifting later that day.

Squats went well, I was much clearer mentally than the last meet and having Paul and Tucker there to help make calls was reassuring. I also realized that I don’t know how to wrap knees after having Paul do them at the meet, that’s gonna take some practice. On my first attempt I wasn’t;t used to the wraps so I shot forward and almost lost balance, but was able to recover and get the lift. My second attempt at 608 got called for depth on some pretty strict judging. Had I gotten it the goal was 630 but we opted for 617 and I made sure to bury it.


Bench went about as well as it could have. I had only one pain free bench session the whole prep and the heaviest weight I worked with was 385 to a two board. I got my opener at 353 easily. My second attempt at 385 was good and I got 395 a few inches off the chest before it stopped. I’ll get my 400 at my next meet as long as I can keep my shoulder healthy. I feel good about what I need to work on and got rid of the major issues this prep.


Deadlifts were my nemesis this entire prep. My setup is inconsistent, my positioning is bad and I still like to yank it with my back. I’m not good a driving with my legs yet. Getting coached in person by Paul was invaluable and cleared up some major issues that I’ll be able to develop now. I also trained with and warmed up on a Texas bar which has a decent amount of whip, but on the platform the new kabuki bar was much stiffer and this threw me off especially since my confidence is not high with the deadlift. I got my first attempt at 556 but it was slow and heavy. Then I got stapled by 601 twice which I got at my last meet. That was the most disappointing part, it’s a weight I’ve hit many times and it would have sealed the elite total that I was hoping for at this meet. The plus side is that I learned so much just being around Tucker and Paul this weekend, and from that I have much more clarity and direction than I did following the last meet. Hanging around strong people really does make you stronger and I’m optimistic about putting together a decent total this summer.

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Andrew Serrano

Andrew Serrano is a full time trainer, holds a B.S. in exercise science and has worked in almost every facet of the training industry. He is currently competing as a 198lb raw lifter, his meet PRs are 589/391/601. His training is guided by the 10/20/Life philosophy with a focus on sustainable injury free progression.
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