T Nation

Bad Training Sessions when Training Ill, Should You Still Go?

I had hay fever for three days, and still. Spent the weekend with fever in bed. Did my bench press session today as I did not want to miss a workout.

My bench has never been a good point for me. My TM is 100kg now, and I am 172 pounds, pound for pound it is not really where I want to be.

I was on my final set for 85% of my TM , the goal was to hit 5 reps or more but I only managed 3 reps, then the spotter helped me lift the 4th and 5th reps (they don’t count, obviously).

Should I get more food and rest (I missed some meals on the weekend) and then be even more determined next week for my final bench press set on the 3x3 week, trying even harder to get the extra few reps?

At the moment, I feel like I am not as determined as I need to be. I could be eating slightly more , I could be resting better and more determined. I only really tend to go for the minimum reps for the final sets, but I want to try harder now because I think it has come to the point of the programme where if I don’t try harder and eat more/recover better, then I just don’t grow. The gains don’t come as easily anymore.

N.b. I am following this version of Wendler (Boring but Big) and I also have the book.

First question that comes to mind is why didn’t you rack the weight at 3?.

I would never train with a fever… missing a few days or even a week is not going to hurt.
Impromtu deloads can actually be great

BBB is tough, you need to eat for size, and recover well.
You also need to pick the right TM, if you can’t hit your TM for 5 good reps most will say it’s too high.

And remember you don’t have to run BBB for every lift, if it’s beating you up try keeping it for 2 and using FSL for the other 2


I think you should get healthy, make sure your TM’s are correct and get back on the horse. I have trained when I was sick/very ill - other times I haven’t. The key to getting stronger is doing the correct things, every single day for years - you do that and the small illnesses/vacations won’t make a difference.

I think about it like people bringing their own food to a 4th of July party or Xmas dinner (or whatever) - you eat perfect the other 363 days/year, squat, push a Prowler/run and a few hotdogs won’t ruin you.


Hi Jim,
When I return to training next week, should I start with the bench press again on the same cycle as I did yesterday? (I.e Repeat yesterdays workout).

And yes, I think I will take your advice, I think my body is telling me to rest up and let the (now) chest infection and fever go.

The training max is right , I have taken a while to progress to this point through the programme.

I’ve found that when I get sick, it seems that if I don’t lift that week, all the energy I would normally use in the gym get rerouted into my immune system. I haven’t been to the doctor for an illness in my adult life, I don’t remember the last time I used sick leave (perhaps because I almost always get sick on the weekends; I think my body just waits for me to have a day off to pounce), and I haven’t had to take meds other than to help me sleep.

I have no idea what you should do when you come back from the illness - if you feel good, resume. If not, take the time to get your sea legs back.