T Nation

Inconsistent Training Problem


#1

Just wondering how I can maximize my gains.

I work 2 weeks away, then have 2 weeks off at home.

I have a good setup at home:

oly bar, trap bar, 300kg oly weights, sand bags, kettlebells, prowler, farmers walk bars, kegs, battling ropes, gymnastic rings, dipping belt, weight vest and more recently tractor tyres.

At work, the gym is basic - a few cardio machines, dumbles upto 25 kg, a multi gym and cable set up.

What would be the most effective way of building muscle? At home I can squat, deadlift, weight dip, oh press, weighted chins etc + a whole myrad of other things. At work I am limited to the weight I can lift.

Any suggestions?

Baz


#2

You are not limited.

you can look at it as mini cycles. Two weeks heavy, low volume (at home), two weeks light, high volume at work.

You also have your body weight that you can use.

The most effective way would be to be consistent. Waterbury has a bunch of work outs you can choose from with limited equipment. Hell, you could do the Vdiet work out and make it work for your situation when at work.

You can’t change your situation (right now), change the way you think about it


#3

First option: Look for another gym with all the necessary equipment to train in. It would be nice to find one within an hour drive.

Second option: Bring your own barbell and weights. I would imagine you could if you were courteous, cleaned up after yourself (I would use straps instead of chalk to stay on the safe side) and kept the noise down. If you have a car with fold-down rear seats or a truck then it shouldn’t be too big of a deal to transport. You can use a hand truck to move the weights around. This will be your warmup and cool down.

If there is no power rack then I would deadlift and front squat while at work and back squat while at home. If there is no bench then I would military press at work and bench at home. If they do allow you to bring weights then it’s likely you can’t slam the weight during deadlifts so you’ll have to go lighter to slowly drop the weight. Work gyms without platforms won’t give you many warnings for noise complaints so you have to play it safe.

It’s definitely inconvenient but it really depends on your goals and what you’re willing to do to attain them.

Edit: If you want you can use the 5/3/1 template and alternate between the 3 deadlift sessions and 3 military sessions at work and at home alternate between the 3 squat sessions and 3 bench sessions. That’s one 5/3/1 cycle over a 4 week period so you wouldn’t need to deload.


#4

Didn’t mention that I work offshore, so taking weights/looking for other gyms isn’t an option, Just got to use what is there.

Baz


#5

Your situation requires you to train in blocks.
Intensity for 2 weeks then accumulation for 2 weeks.

At home you can train with intensity on compound lifts. (Intensity means % of 1 rep max ). So you could set up a powerbuilding program that focuses on low rep strength training.

When you’re away at work you need to be a bit more imaginative. Think volume and pre exhaust techniques.
So your dumbbells only go up to 25kg but if you pre exhaust your chest first with Dumbbell Flys then hit incline DB bench press for high reps you should be able to get good stimulation.

Same for shoulders. Do cable lateral raises before seated dumbbell press and you may be able to get stimulation. High rep training is boring as hell and hurts but in your situation it’s the obvious solution.

I’m not quite sure how you’ll train your legs away but single leg training looks the main option. Lunges, Bulgarian split squats etc…
You’ll have to do a lot of reps but mix that with the heavy compound lifting when you’re at home and you should be able to work out a pretty decent program.


#6

Lot of good advice so far. To echo/give my perspective, I would view this as a positive rather than a negative. You basically KNOW you have 2 weeks off each month from heavy training, so this means you have some excellent chances to recover. Were I in your situation, I would basically push as hard as humanly possible for the 2 weeks I had access to weights (ignoring a lot of rules about recover time/rates/volume/etc) and then spend the 2 weeks away focusing purely on conditioning.

You could spend those 2 weeks of conditioning probably busting your ass hard as well, or go a little lighter for recovery. The improved conditioning and rest would then benefit you when you get back for the 2 weeks, and the cycle would continue.


#7

[quote]BazUK wrote:
Didn’t mention that I work offshore, so taking weights/looking for other gyms isn’t an option, Just got to use what is there.

Baz[/quote]

I see. Could you at least bring your weighted vest? It would be nice if you have something heavy. I checked online and some go as high as 60+ kg. For single leg work you could potentially be working with 2x 25 kg dumbbells, 42kg additional weight with half your body unsupported, and up to 60 kg for a weighted vest if you have that; which comes out to over 150 kg. You would no longer be limited by heavy leg work. It’ll take time to get your technique and coordination down but eventually you’ll figure out your baseline strength. It would be a good idea not to push the single leg work too fast since you may need time building coordination and stabilizing muscles. I would do movements like high step ups and single leg deadlifts. That way you could have a progression for single leg work while away and concentrate on the full lift at home. For upper body, you can go heavy with the vest and place your feet on an elevated surface (if a bench isn’t available). The gymnastic rings and dip belt can be useful depending on what else is there.


#8

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
Lot of good advice so far. To echo/give my perspective, I would view this as a positive rather than a negative. You basically KNOW you have 2 weeks off each month from heavy training, so this means you have some excellent chances to recover. Were I in your situation, I would basically push as hard as humanly possible for the 2 weeks I had access to weights (ignoring a lot of rules about recover time/rates/volume/etc) and then spend the 2 weeks away focusing purely on conditioning.

You could spend those 2 weeks of conditioning probably busting your ass hard as well, or go a little lighter for recovery. The improved conditioning and rest would then benefit you when you get back for the 2 weeks, and the cycle would continue.[/quote]

I feel this is a recipe for disaster/injury.


#9

imagination,creativety hulk motivation hq i never worked offshore but many of my freinds do they say everything is heavy have seen videos of people lifting pipe and attaching things to it your muscles dont care what u are lifting


#10

[quote]lift206 wrote:
First option: Look for another gym with all the necessary equipment to train in. It would be nice to find one within an hour drive.

Second option: Bring your own barbell and weights. I would imagine you could if you were courteous, cleaned up after yourself (I would use straps instead of chalk to stay on the safe side) and kept the noise down. If you have a car with fold-down rear seats or a truck then it shouldn’t be too big of a deal to transport. You can use a hand truck to move the weights around. This will be your warmup and cool down.

If there is no power rack then I would deadlift and front squat while at work and back squat while at home. If there is no bench then I would military press at work and bench at home. If they do allow you to bring weights then it’s likely you can’t slam the weight during deadlifts so you’ll have to go lighter to slowly drop the weight. Work gyms without platforms won’t give you many warnings for noise complaints so you have to play it safe.

It’s definitely inconvenient but it really depends on your goals and what you’re willing to do to attain them.

Edit: If you want you can use the 5/3/1 template and alternate between the 3 deadlift sessions and 3 military sessions at work and at home alternate between the 3 squat sessions and 3 bench sessions. That’s one 5/3/1 cycle over a 4 week period so you wouldn’t need to deload.[/quote]

If you’re actually serious about taking weights to the gym, then you’re hilarious. Haha.


#11

[quote]Jarvan wrote:

I feel this is a recipe for disaster/injury.[/quote]

A lot of other people feel that way as well.


#12

[quote]Jarvan wrote:

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
Lot of good advice so far. To echo/give my perspective, I would view this as a positive rather than a negative. You basically KNOW you have 2 weeks off each month from heavy training, so this means you have some excellent chances to recover. Were I in your situation, I would basically push as hard as humanly possible for the 2 weeks I had access to weights (ignoring a lot of rules about recover time/rates/volume/etc) and then spend the 2 weeks away focusing purely on conditioning.

You could spend those 2 weeks of conditioning probably busting your ass hard as well, or go a little lighter for recovery. The improved conditioning and rest would then benefit you when you get back for the 2 weeks, and the cycle would continue.[/quote]

I feel this is a recipe for disaster/injury.[/quote]

I don’t typically disagree with T3hPwnisher, but I just can’t see this being a good long term plan for anyone but the most advanced and luckiest of lifters.


#13

[quote]dagill2 wrote:

[quote]Jarvan wrote:

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
Lot of good advice so far. To echo/give my perspective, I would view this as a positive rather than a negative. You basically KNOW you have 2 weeks off each month from heavy training, so this means you have some excellent chances to recover. Were I in your situation, I would basically push as hard as humanly possible for the 2 weeks I had access to weights (ignoring a lot of rules about recover time/rates/volume/etc) and then spend the 2 weeks away focusing purely on conditioning.

You could spend those 2 weeks of conditioning probably busting your ass hard as well, or go a little lighter for recovery. The improved conditioning and rest would then benefit you when you get back for the 2 weeks, and the cycle would continue.[/quote]

I feel this is a recipe for disaster/injury.[/quote]

I don’t typically disagree with T3hPwnisher, but I just can’t see this being a good long term plan for anyone but the most advanced and luckiest of lifters.
[/quote]

I am curious what your advice is for the TC in this situation.


#14

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:

[quote]dagill2 wrote:

[quote]Jarvan wrote:

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
Lot of good advice so far. To echo/give my perspective, I would view this as a positive rather than a negative. You basically KNOW you have 2 weeks off each month from heavy training, so this means you have some excellent chances to recover. Were I in your situation, I would basically push as hard as humanly possible for the 2 weeks I had access to weights (ignoring a lot of rules about recover time/rates/volume/etc) and then spend the 2 weeks away focusing purely on conditioning.

You could spend those 2 weeks of conditioning probably busting your ass hard as well, or go a little lighter for recovery. The improved conditioning and rest would then benefit you when you get back for the 2 weeks, and the cycle would continue.[/quote]

I feel this is a recipe for disaster/injury.[/quote]

I don’t typically disagree with T3hPwnisher, but I just can’t see this being a good long term plan for anyone but the most advanced and luckiest of lifters.
[/quote]

I am curious what your advice is for the TC in this situation.
[/quote]

I would agree with your basic premise of 2 weeks pure strength/size, 2 weeks conditioning, but I think going for maximum intensity without paying proper attention to recovery is counter productive at best and dangerous at worst at this frequency. I get that we could all use periods of throwing the rule book out and hitting it as hard as possible, but not 50% of the time.


#15

So simply scale as necessary? I am fine with that. I think that principle should always be applied.


#16

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
So simply scale as necessary? I am fine with that. I think that principle should always be applied. [/quote]

That’s my opinion yes, workouts should be reasonable most of the time.

Having said that, you are stronger than I’ve ever been so I’m happy to concede that this may be where I’m going wrong.


#17

I’m gonna assume OP actually has at least some experience with weights, given that he has 300kg’s of weights laying around. With that said, perhaps T3hPwnisher’s original plan could work. On the other hand, a complete novice would most likely hit a dead end.


#18

[quote]Jarvan wrote:
I’m gonna assume OP actually has at least some experience with weights, given that he has 300kg’s of weights laying around. With that said, perhaps T3hPwnisher’s original plan could work. On the other hand, a complete novice would most likely hit a dead end. [/quote]

I feel like a novice would be self limiting in that their work capacity and conditioning wouldn’t really permit them to push themselves too hard, even if they tried, but it’s hard to say. That said, it’s a less than ideal plan due to a less than ideal situation, and it’s what I’ve done when I needed to.


#19

[quote]Awes wrote:

[quote]lift206 wrote:
First option: Look for another gym with all the necessary equipment to train in. It would be nice to find one within an hour drive.

Second option: Bring your own barbell and weights. I would imagine you could if you were courteous, cleaned up after yourself (I would use straps instead of chalk to stay on the safe side) and kept the noise down. If you have a car with fold-down rear seats or a truck then it shouldn’t be too big of a deal to transport. You can use a hand truck to move the weights around. This will be your warmup and cool down.

If there is no power rack then I would deadlift and front squat while at work and back squat while at home. If there is no bench then I would military press at work and bench at home. If they do allow you to bring weights then it’s likely you can’t slam the weight during deadlifts so you’ll have to go lighter to slowly drop the weight. Work gyms without platforms won’t give you many warnings for noise complaints so you have to play it safe.

It’s definitely inconvenient but it really depends on your goals and what you’re willing to do to attain them.

Edit: If you want you can use the 5/3/1 template and alternate between the 3 deadlift sessions and 3 military sessions at work and at home alternate between the 3 squat sessions and 3 bench sessions. That’s one 5/3/1 cycle over a 4 week period so you wouldn’t need to deload.[/quote]

If you’re actually serious about taking weights to the gym, then you’re hilarious. Haha.
[/quote]

I am serious and I would if I needed to. You could laugh about it but I would still be getting stronger in that situation. Like I said, it depends on your goals and what you’re willing to do to attain them. This applies to strength training and life in general.

I have some far out goals for myself in powerlifting and I won’t make any excuses to reach them. Hard work and doing what you can to prevent making excuses is what it takes. Everyone has different goals so I can understand if others aren’t willing to take it that far.


#20

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
I feel like a novice would be self limiting in that their work capacity and conditioning wouldn’t really permit them to push themselves too hard, even if they tried, but it’s hard to say. That said, it’s a less than ideal plan due to a less than ideal situation, and it’s what I’ve done when I needed to.[/quote]

I would have to agree with T3hPwnisher on this. My first option would be to prioritize heavy leg training while away at work and if there was no possible chance of that happening then I would push hard during that two week window at home.

I would personally run high volume russian style programs during that time. Or I could run an accelerated 5/3/1 program doing the 12 training sessions over a 14 day period. Of course you have to learn when and when not to push it but it’s definitely possible to do. You would also need to have technique down so that pushing that hard wouldn’t lead to injury. Two weeks away from barbell work is enough time to recover.

This is the beginner forum so I understand that it isn’t necessary to focus only on the powerlifting movements but the principle still applies that you could push hard in that two week window if you can’t do much while at work.