Jimmy “Guns” Bryan’s USPA 2013 Deep South Open recap
By Jimmy Bryan on 7/2/2013 Back to Articles

Jimmy “Guns” Bryan’s USPA 2013 Deep South Open recap


USPA 2013 Deep South Open is officially over, and that means I have a powerlifting meet under my belt. This prep was a little long, 16 weeks. But I started out working my numbers up in reps of 5. Not too heavy, but working on my technique. The hardest obstacle I had was deads. Having had surgery and always having pain in my lumbar, I had to trust my technique and tweak it some. I still have room to improve on it, so big numbers to come!

                The night before meet day, we traveled up about an hour to weigh in, I weighed 258, not where I wanted to be, I had not gained a pound in about 6 weeks. Even adding 2 Universal Real gains, and a Gain Fast shake to my day, I still maintained the same. Heaviest I was during prep was 264, starting out about 245.But gained all that size in the first half. Got all my gear checked, set my openers at 530/385/530 and headed to Olive Garden for some pasta. Drove home and made it back but didn’t get into bed until 1030. I had cooked up some chocolate chip protein pancakes that I could eat during the day.

                Woke up at 430am and just tried to rest and lay in bed waiting for 6am to roll around. As soon as the alarm went off, I made 6 eggs and a cup of oats and a banana. I was extremely anxious and nervous all together. I have not competed in anything in years and years. I barely was able to just get the eggs down, I downed my Animal Pak, Vitamin D3, Garlic, Taurine and fish oils. Almost puked there. Waited about 30-40 minutes and was able to get down the oats and banana. Jumped in the car and headed out, I let the wife drive as we followed my fellow TeamXcellence crew and having the wife drive is always a scary endeavor for me, hahaha! I put my iPod on and cranked some Iron Maiden and Hatebreed. That really helped the nerves.

                We arrived to a fairly packed gym, Revolution Fitness, one of the best gyms I have ever been to. I grabbed some seats for the family and sat down and ate 2 of my pancakes with lots of maple syrup. I got this recipe from my buddy Big Al Fortney! They are delicious! I drank Gatorade and Universals Atomic 7 BCAA’s throughout the whole meet! I drank over 64oz. We were called up for our lifter meeting then released to get changed and started warming up. I didn’t start warming up until the 2nd attempts of the 1st flight started. Here is how all my warm ups and attempts went.

                I started my Squat warm ups with putting Blue Heat on my hams and quads and getting in a lot of good stretching in. I didn’t have and trouble areas and really felt great. I jumped on a rack and started-




405x1 Added belt

485x1 Drank 2 scoops of Animal Rage here!

There was a little bit of a long wait and not ever doing a meet, this made me nervous, I didn’t want to get cold, so I stretched as I waited. I got called “in the hole” and had my buddy wrap my knees with my Iron Rebel Anaconda knee wraps. These were the tightest he had wrapped me, I tightened down my belt, had him chalk my back up and I chalked my hands, took a small whiff of Nose Tork, and made way to the platform. Each and every set up was identical and spot on. My attempts went like this –

 529.10lbs/240kg This was really easy, it flew up, but I get so focused that voices get blocked out and I could not here my commands from my guy, and even though I was parallel, I didn’t break the plane! So even though I missed, I was really confident and still moved up.

573.20lbs/260kg Had a little bit of a sticking point, but this was a good lift. And even though I almost stalled, I really wanted 600+.

600.75lbs/272.5kg I was ready for this. Unracking and taking my walkout, this felt better than the 274. I hit this one better as well, but as I came up and locked out, I got off balance and took a step back right as he gave the rack command. I know now it was because I closed my eyes to grind it out. I will not do this again. Still, I will call this my squat PR, not a meet PR, but Ill take it. It was smooth.


Going into bench, I changed shirts, I was sweating my ass off, ate another pancake with syrup, and proceeded to warm up. Added Blue Heat to my Tri’s and warm ups went as follows –




365x1 added my Iron Rebel Anaconda wrist wraps.  Drank another scoop of Animal Rage here.

I had a small wait, pretty close to the squat, and got called in the hole, wrapped my wrists tight, chalked up my hands and took a small whiff of Nose Tork.

385.8lbs/175kg This was really easy, but had a small issue locking my right elbow out, I came out of my normal grove and had to compensate, but locked it out no problem.  Got my first official pause from a USPA judge and it is long folks! But that gave me confidence in my pause.

402.3lbs/182.5kg This one was right in my groove and went up nice and smooth.

413.4lbs/187.5kg I wasn’t sure where to go after the 402. It was easy, but thought another 10lbs or so at that weight, would be a lot tougher. Was I wrong, I had so much more in me.  But this was a huge PR, not only due to being paused, but by weight!


After bench, I changed shirts again,(but took it off after my first attempt because it was really hot in the gym) and proceeded to add my socks and deadlift slippers. Ate another pancake and syrup, took some Taurine because I felt a small cramp in my foot, and ate a banana!  Added some more Blue Heat to my Hams, and proceeded to warmup –




405x1 Added belt

485x1 I was a little nervous because I was pretty tired and wore out. 485 moved slow, and I kind of questioned my opener.  I decided to not take any more Animal Rage. I was still pretty amped and just didn’t want to push it.


Got called in the hole, added baby powder to my quads, tightened up my belt, and chalked up.

529.10lbs/240kg Went up smooth and easy. Confidence was up!

551.15lbs/250kg Good Lift

573.20lbs/260kg Good lift, this was pretty close to my max and was a PR.


And it was over. I placed 1st in Masters 40-44 275 class. Although I was the only guy in the class, I set all Mississippi State records along with breaking the current American records. So when all paperwork is submitted and if no one doing another meet kicks my ass, I will be the American record holder. Haha. I really think these numbers are low, and I will do everything I can to make sure I continue to make progress and bring these numbers up! The USPA is a great federation, and like Brandon Lilly, I feel the need to have strict rules, where the lifter is accountable, and they have strict rules that you must follow, or get red lighted. They were extremely consistent. A lot of lifters red lighted due to this. A lot of them coming in from other federations, and they soon realized they needed to complete the lifts by the book.

                Overall, this was one of the most fun things I have done in a long time. I enjoyed every minute of it. I will be doing another meet in the future. I have not sat down and figured out when or where. I am thinking sometime in the winter. I had plans to do a bodybuilding show next year, and that may still happen, but I may put that aside and continue to push myself in powerlifting. I had a bunch of people tell me I was ment to do this sport.

                Big thanks goes out to my family for putting up with me. The last week for sure was rough and I was on edge, but they put up with me. Thanks to Strength Crew Athlete Ed McGlaughlin for doing my prep for me. I really had little clue to what I needed to do or where to start and he helped out tremendously. I will always use Animal products and give a huge thanks to them and the family I have on the Animal Forvm! So many of them followed me throughout me entire prep.  I was lucky enough to pick up a small sponsor in this prep, NutritionXcellence.com! Thanks for picking me up and I see great things happening here. Also my friends at Strength Crew, you provided me with tons of motivation. Speaking of motivation, about 5 month ago, I had some doubts, I never considered myself strong, but talking with some of you, and getting some serious motivation from you, it gave me confidence to jump in. So thanks to Big Al Fortney, Marshall “Freakshow” Johnson, Grant Higa, Ben Seath, Ed McGlaughlin, P Diesel, Brandon Lilly, and the whole Lilliebrigdge family. I have briefly talked with some of these guys, or have talked with them almost daily on different things!

Looking forward to the future, my motivation is the highest it’s ever been. Ready for the next one and setting the bar even higher for myself!


By Guns on 7/2/2013 at 11:54

Thank you Strength Crew!

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