T Nation

Mini-Workouts Between Main Workouts?


What do ya'll do inbetween main workouts? Be specific should you feel inclined.

Do you push/pull a prowler/tire/sled etc?

Light strongman type stuff?

Bodyweight exercises?

RehabPrehab? (RC, ROM, foamrolling, stretching, etc)

I'll start:

Push ups- one hand elevated, feet elevated, staggered, scap push ups, push up+, and any combination of those

Bulgarian split squats- feet staggered apart, feet drawn in or moved out from each other, hands at side or overhead

couch single leg squats- basically a box squat version of a pistol to a couch since I can't do a full pistol

Various chins/pull ups- I love the one where you try to pull yourself up to where your torso is nearly parallel to the ground. Feels like it puts my scaps where they should be on a bench press.

Face pulls w/ bands

Band pull aparts

Curls with bands from different heights.

various triceps extensions

Band goodmornings

lots of stretching, soft tissue stuff (foam rolling, etc), and mobility work, and regular walks.

I love the bodyweight stuff because it seems to be teaching me how move correctly. And I usually go pretty light staying miles away from failure unless I'm augmenting a main workout. Mostly, I do these to get the blood flowing, correct body posture and movement, aid recovery, and improve body comp.


Small muscle groups (forearms and such), strongmen type stuff, sprints and conditioning, mobility/foam rolling, I've done very light speed work.


Usually sprints or powercleans plus mobility/stretching. Sometimes before upper body sessions I'll do some high rep work. I save most of the other stuff you mentioned for the end or during my sessions.


Sometimes I'll throw in a light arm day to get a pump and appease my ego, but usually I do a lot of joint integrity work, stability exercises, foam rolling, and ab/lower back work. I'll also have some MAT work done, as well. Just recently I've started adding in 15-20 minutes of sledgehammer and sandbag work to get my heart rate a little higher and work my grip more.


maybe some cardio, prowler/sled work. anything else, there is no way I would recover from my main training sessions.


Hill sprints, Kettlebells, prowler and sledge work and stretching.


Light volume work for whatever I did the day before+lagging muscle groups.


Sled work, rear delts / rotator work, stretching, and abs. I used to do quite a few extra workouts for hypertrophy, and weak points, but these days I can't seem to handle the volume, and do most of my extra workouts for prehab / rehab, conditioning, and recovery.




Nice read. I have that one bookmarked now. I remember Louie going a little into mini-workouts in the book of methods and he said that the mini-workouts are even more crucial for the natty lifters.


squats 70% for 3 or 80% for 1
pullups 20x5 with weight or 5x20 bw

curls, abs, glute isolater, leg curls/ext


I wouldn't bother except for stretching and foam rolling which should be done daily .

If you're sn athlete or losing fat this would be different. IMO , if you have all this workout energy left over, you're not training hard enough. And again , if you're training for some other athletic event other than powerlifting that's a different story .


Been doing this for a while, it makes a hell of a difference in the size and recovery department


"In the old Soviet system, 10-16 workouts per week were prescribed. In football, 3-a-days are quite common; thatâ??s 15 a week, but no one seems to think thatâ??s unreasonable. "

Extra workouts are for restoration not "balls to the wall" training.


Are you a Russian military officer who's job is to train?

Most here don't remember the old iron curtain . Russian "officers " were full time athletes . That was their job.

If you're a regular Joe and powerlifting , train hard in the gym. Stretch daily
. Foam roll daily. And you won't need extra workouts or want them .

If you're worrying about your extra workouts and you're powerlifting you are not training hard enough in the gym.

If you're an athlete you must worry about various components
. That's a different story .


I've always wondered if it's these mini-workout type stuff that helps some prisoners stay so damned ripped despite piss poor food and less than stellar facilities. I mean... a few push ups here, some cell-mate squats there. Done inbetween workouts in the yard.


Could be fletch. Remember these guys have all day to do nothing reall world is different .

I know Louie and he's a genuis at this stuff, but look at his situation . He's not a full time student. He's not a nine to five guy.

And he owns a gym . He's also using as he himself has admitted .

The workouts I do on Josh '. Program take one hour to ninety minutes . Add in ten twenty for stretching and foam rolling and you have 1.5-2 hours . He doesn't Want me to do anything else except walking .

If I was an athlete he would work that in the program .


I've been meaning to ask. What would you do differently concerning your shoulder? I know that now, you don't do bench speed work and you don't do full bb pressing, but would you do or not do certain things in the past?


Prowler work- pushes and pulls, not sprints (sprints I save for anytime when I accidentally have three rest days in a row)
Band pull aparts/ shoulder stuff with a lacrosse ball- I really need to get my shoulders worked on.

I do my ab work after deadlifts, foam roll every other night or so.


I'd do nothing different . It wasn't hurt by lifting . It's just the injury prevents certain things. But as a beginner I'd make sure form was a priority .