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Power Race Test

A Power Race is a test of strength, power and endurance where you complete a specific number of bench press, deadlift, and pull-up reps as fast as you can.

The Test

  • 50 deadlifts

  • 50 bench press reps

  • Pullups

Note: Power Racing is a multiset workout. Most athletes use 5-15 sets to complete each of the lifts.

What you need

  • Stop watch 

  • Olympic barbell with weights

  • Bench press bench

  • Pull-up bar

  • Notepad or phone

  • (Optional) Resistance bands

How to do it

A Power Race is a time trial where athletes complete three strength events in succession with a running clock from the first deadlift rep to the last pull up. The goal is to complete the number of reps required with the designated weight for your weight class as fast as you can. The weight used in Power Racing is far more than you will be able to do in a single set. Most athletes do between 5 and 15 sets completing 4-10 reps in each set. The stronger you are the more reps you will be able to do per set and the shorter your rest periods will be.     

The standard order of events for a Power Race is Deadlift, Bench Press, Pull Ups. You will complete all deadlifts before moving to bench press and all bench press before moving to pull-ups. You can record "lap times" for each event but the overall time including transition/rest time between events counts in your overall Power Race time.​

Step 1: Find your working weight and reps on the Power Racing Weight Tables

Step 2: Warm up and load your weights

Step 3: Start a timer and complete all three events as fast as you can

Step 4: Compare your results at

What level should I use?

If you lift weights only occasionally or are new to weightlifting start with the Keystone level. If you are an experienced lifter you can judge based on the weights if you should start at Standard, Advanced, or Elite. If you haven't yet mastered pull-ups, start racing at the Keystone competition level. This level allows you use a resistance band for assistance on the pull-up. 


Start your timer right before your first set. Do not stop the timer in between sets or between stations. Let the timer run until you have completed your 50th rep of bench press.

Do quality reps. While Power Racing is a race it's not about doing "fast reps". It's about doing quality reps in as few sets and with the shortest rest periods as possible

Break your reps into any number of sets that works for you. (e.g. 10 sets of 5, 5 sets of 10, 12 sets of 4 +2, etc.) Sets can include an number of reps and rest periods are as long as you need to restore your ATPs.

Quality Deadlift Reps

  • Any grip can be used.

  • No straps.

  • Knee wraps and gloves are optional. 

  • Each rep must start from the ground. A rep counts once the athlete has locked out their knees. 

  • Do not drop the bar on decent. The athletes hands must remain on the bar for the decent and the athlete must control the weight to the ground. Do not bounce the weight off the floor. In competition the rep will not count if the bar is dropped out of control.

  • At the end of each rep the athlete must release their grip from the bar and regrip. No "bounce and go" reps. Tip: You don't have to remove your hand from the bar but show the judges that your grip has been released each rep by extending your fingers.  

Quality Bench Press Reps

  • Head, shoulders, and glutes must remain in contact with the bench at all times

  • Touch and go without bouncing  

  • No sinking; No heaving

  • You must have an even lock out with both elbows locking out before starting the next rep 

  • Bouncing the bar off your chest will be a no rep 

  • The back can arch but glutes must retain in contact with bench.

  • Here's a great video from Mind Pump TV to perfect your Bench Press form.

Quality Pull Ups

  • Pull-ups may be done with either an overhand (pronated) grip or an underhand (supinated) grip. Changes in grip are allowed within a set and each set can use different grips.

  • The pull-up begins at the "dead-hang" with arms extended and the body hanging motionless.

  • A quality pull-up is performed with minimal motion, the body rises until the chin is above the bar. The rep competes by lowering the body back to the "dead-hang" position.

  • No kicking, no kipping, no swinging, no lifting knees.


Completing a Power Race in Your Local Gym

A Power Race does require a bit of planning in a busy gym. Step one is to know your workout weights for deadlift and bench press. You can find your workout weight on the Power Racing Weight Tables. Next plan out your stations within the gym. You'll need a pull-up bar, a deadlift station, and a bench press station. It takes most athletes between 5-18 minutes to complete each event.

In the heat of the workout it will be difficult to keep track of your rep count. The best approach is to log your reps per set in a notebook or electronic workout log.

Do your deadlift and bench press warm up reps prior to starting your race. The weight used in Power Racing is heavy. Make sure your muscles are stretched and warm to avoid injury.

Record Your Times

After you complete your Power Race pop over to our post results page and see how you did. Log as many attempts as you like. 

Sign-Up for an Event

While completing a Power Race is seriously tough on its own, the true spirit behind Power Racing is "complete fitness" which happens at Power 5k and Power Triathlon events. You will complete a Power Race and an endurance race in one insanely fun and challenging event. Find upcoming events here

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