This summer, I moved back to northeastern Ohio, and I’ve been training with a new group. In this time, I’ve made a handful of technical adjustments that I really believe in the long run will make me a better lifter. Apparently, I just need a little more time to fine-tune some of these adjustments.

Going into the meet, I was confident, and physically, I felt great. I’m sure I could have pushed it a little harder the last few weeks of training to the point that I physically and mentally needed that deload week like I have in just about every meet I’ve done in the past. I think as I prepare for my next competition and I combine the smarter, more technical training from my new group, with the harder, push-the-limits style of training from my old crew, I will be good for a PR total.

Meet Day

I weighed in at 215.2 on Friday, and by meet time, I was back up to over 225.


I felt great warming up. One of my old training partners, Josh CIoca, came up to wrap my knees. I usually self wrap, but it’s very tough to really crank the Krait Wraps down, and they are by far the best wraps.

I opened at 630 – it was fast and easy. On my second attempt, I went to 680, a five-pound meet PR. I got called on depth on a very close call. It was very easy, and I contemplated going to 700, which was my goal for the meet, but I decided to take the “sure thing” and walk away with a PR. So, I took 680 again on my third, and it was just as easy and was a good lift for a five-pound meet PR.


This is where I’ve made the most technical adjustments and felt confident going in.

I opened conservatively at 400 pounds and hit it very easily, but my back did cramp up on this attempt. On my second attempt, I went to 425, five pounds away from a meet PR, and hit it just as easily. On my third, I went to 440 pounds, which would have been a 10-pound PR, but I relaxed at the bottom and let it sink into my chest — exactly what I’ve been trying not to do. It must have really looked bad because one of the spotters thought I got hurt.


After another three-plus-hour break, I started warming up for deadlift. Usually, I’m pretty excited to deadlift, but at this point, I was absolutely drained.

In warm-ups, everything was still light and moved well; I was just so out of gas at this point. My last warm-up was 605, and it was easy as I could hope for.

I opened at 680, which is probably the lightest opener I’ve had in a few years. I was light and fast. I took 730 on my second, and I got called for a down, up movement as I started to shake as the bar got to my knees (which is common for me). I’m usually my own worst critic, and I was shocked I was red-lighted on this one. I already didn’t hit the numbers I wanted to (I needed 760 to hit a PR total), so that’s what I called for on my third attempt, despite getting reds on my second. Unfortunately, I didn’t have it in me that day.

Powerlifting is definitely a game of inches. If a couple of close calls would have gone the other way, it could have been a completely different meet for me. But in the end, it’s you versus the weights. Next time, I will leave no doubt. I am looking forward to finding my next meet and getting back to training!

Thank you so much to all my friends and family who came out to support. I realize I’m very lucky to have all of these people in my life.

Jo Jordan Cuts Squat Suit to Lift 965 Pounds at 2019 XPCs