T Nation

Bad Workouts

So here is my situation.

I have a grappling tournament in 3 weeks and I am entirely unsure on what to do in the weight room. Last week I did all HFSW/NC with cleans, snatches, high pulls, and push jerks, focusing on light weight and explosiveness.

I have yet to have a good workout this week and I am completely unsure of what to do about it. I can’t hold onto cleans, snatches, or high pulls, and my technique is completely off, which tells me that this is a neural problem. I have 3 weeks to go after this week and I feel that my prep is going bad and I am wasting my time, energy, and supps.

I am wondering if you can help me. How do you handle bad workouts? How do you recover? What should I do the rest of the week? Neural Charge? If so, what movements?

Also, is there any chance you could help me periodize the next 3 weeks? I have 2 more weeks of training hard and then 1 week of probably neural charge workouts, with the tourney being on a Saturday. I know I probably won’t gain much strength until then, but I would like to go in being as explosive as I can.

Any help is much appreciated.

Howie, I don’t claim to be a strength authority but maybe you are focusing too much on what you are doing in the weight room instead of what goes on during your grappling contest. I tend to shrug off bad workouts knowing they seem inevitable for various reasons–lack of sleep, coming exams, fight with wife/girlfriend, etc. Over time the workouts will get better, so I just continue in that vein. This doesn’t imply you can progress forever–there are genetic limits.

My off the top of head suggestion is to back way off in weights and do some workouts with weights you know you can do even if you have to go below the 70 to 60 percent range. When all is said and done,CT, with his insights, can be a lot more helpful than I. Hope he jumps in and provides the info you are seeking.

Best of luck in your coming grappling contest.

Germanicus,
Thank you for your insight. As always, any and all advice is appreciated.

I’ve had a string of bad workouts and I’m just not sure how to bounce back. It’s a hard pill to swallow.

@Howie: Your grip is one of the first thing to go when your nervous system gets drained, Poliquin used to do a grip strength test to determine if any athlete should do a regular workout, reduce volume, or do more or set a PR. Honestly I’d get some Z-12 & sleep as much as possible, nothing is better to recover than sleep. I use HRV which keeps me out of trouble because I love to train.

Neural charge workouts do wonders as well with a scoop of two of Power Drive after… #1 thing is always performance, if you have a bad perforce your body isn’t ready, eat more, sleep more, relax more,…your peri must be flawless as well & MAG-10 does wonders to recover too. Listen to your body it tells you what to do and is always right we just try to negotiate with it and it doesn’t work that way. Brain candy is good too.

I’m sure CT will chime in and can give you a fantastic program like he always does. Sleep as much as you can & don’t fret over the little things mental stress is just as bad as physical stress. Hope that helps. I learned this from doing a lot of very dumb things in my early training years :slight_smile: lol, but haven’t we all. Good luck in your tournament :slight_smile:

Oh I’ve found 10-15 minutes of jumps before every workout keeps my nervous system at a higher level

[quote]howie424 wrote:

Also, is there any chance you could help me periodize the next 3 weeks? I have 2 more weeks of training hard and then 1 week of probably neural charge workouts, with the tourney being on a Saturday. I know I probably won’t gain much strength until then, but I would like to go in being as explosive as I can.

Any help is much appreciated.[/quote]

Blow off the bad workouts in the gym. More important is how is your mat training going? 3 weeks out from a tournament you should be much more concerned with your gas and your techniques on the mat that you will take with you. We call it our game. Are you going to be cutting weight? You might as well as forget about strength gains with the amount of actual mat cardio you should be putting in right now, even more so if you have to make weight.

It’s hard to carry over much strength to the gym when you are rolling hard getting ready for a tournament.

[quote]sput79 wrote:
@Howie: Your grip is one of the first thing to go when your nervous system gets drained, Poliquin used to do a grip strength test to determine if any athlete should do a regular workout, reduce volume, or do more or set a PR. Honestly I’d get some Z-12 & sleep as much as possible, nothing is better to recover than sleep. I use HRV which keeps me out of trouble because I love to train.

Neural charge workouts do wonders as well with a scoop of two of Power Drive after… #1 thing is always performance, if you have a bad perforce your body isn’t ready, eat more, sleep more, relax more,…your peri must be flawless as well & MAG-10 does wonders to recover too. Listen to your body it tells you what to do and is always right we just try to negotiate with it and it doesn’t work that way. Brain candy is good too.

I’m sure CT will chime in and can give you a fantastic program like he always does. Sleep as much as you can & don’t fret over the little things mental stress is just as bad as physical stress. Hope that helps. I learned this from doing a lot of very dumb things in my early training years :slight_smile: lol, but haven’t we all. Good luck in your tournament :)[/quote]

Thanks for the input Sput. I’ve been doing 2 Finibars, up to 6 scoops of SWF per day between lifting and rolling, and 4 MAG-10 pulses, GPC, plus all the food I can get. I also sleep a lot. I’m not sure why I should be drained, especially after taking the week off for NC last week.

I feel that my lack of programming is also a concern. I am wandering aimlessly into the gym and leaving frustrated. I generally need a plan and right now I really don’t know how to program a plan.

[quote]MWP wrote:

[quote]howie424 wrote:

Also, is there any chance you could help me periodize the next 3 weeks? I have 2 more weeks of training hard and then 1 week of probably neural charge workouts, with the tourney being on a Saturday. I know I probably won’t gain much strength until then, but I would like to go in being as explosive as I can.

Any help is much appreciated.[/quote]

Blow off the bad workouts in the gym. More important is how is your mat training going? 3 weeks out from a tournament you should be much more concerned with your gas and your techniques on the mat that you will take with you. We call it our game. Are you going to be cutting weight? You might as well as forget about strength gains with the amount of actual mat cardio you should be putting in right now, even more so if you have to make weight.

It’s hard to carry over much strength to the gym when you are rolling hard getting ready for a tournament. [/quote]

I am pretty confident with my technique and conditioning. I’m doing the novice division so hopefully I don’t run into any sandbaggers. With that being said I am still ALWAYS looking to increase my game, especially with a tournament coming up.

I was not going to cut weight, but now that I can see I won’t be gaining much strength or even maintaining, I may cut the last 10 pounds for a lighter weight class. But like I said, I don’t want to be stronger, I just want to maintain explosiveness and keep my nervous system alert.

One sucky thing about my mat time is that both of my personal training partners are hurt, and the gym I go to only trains twice a week. Lame shit but oh well.

Thanks for chiming in!

[quote]howie424 wrote:

But like I said, I don’t want to be stronger, I just want to maintain explosiveness and keep my nervous system alert. [/quote]

Just out of curiosity, what lifts are you doing in the gym? Do you use lifting in the gym to primarily build muscle or to augment your rolling. The reason I ask is that I used to powerlift before I got into BJJ. I primarily focused on bench, deads, and squats. Did other exercises but focused on these lifts.

Once I got into doing BJJ, I shifted my gym workouts to really focus on my explosiveness on the mat by doing exercises that would really get my heartrate spiked for a short burst like I would encounter on the mat. I still do the big 3 but nowhere near to my former levels. It seems I have picked up alot of Crossfit type exercises now and it has really helped me alot.

I am lifting 3 times per week doing push jerks, power cleans, power snatches, and sometimes high/low pulls. I really try to focus on explosiveness, but I think that I am working too close to my maxes, especially this close to tournament time. Next week I’m not entirely sure what I will do but I may do more weight sessions per week, but bring them down to 20-30 minutes with 50-60%. What do you think?