T Nation

Risks of Workout-Skipping

How beneficial is holding to the strictest of workout schedules? What should be expected if you skip, say, one of your three-per-week workouts?

What has been your experience?

Is this a serious question? Go to the gym.

go more then 3x

Skipping a workout every now and then is nothing to worry about. I agree with toohungry, though. Three workouts per week wouldn’t be enough for me.

Three per week was what I saw in a Starting Strength thread. I’m going for bulk first and foremost. Is four times a week optimum?

I went today already, boyscout, a day off schedule, hence my question.

[quote]toohungry wrote:
go more then 3x
[/quote]

What are your gain goals? How many times a week do you go? How long per workout do you stay?

don’t listen to people saying “go more then 3x”

shit, i’ve gone to the gym 2x, 3x, 4x, 5x a week and have made gains in all the programs.

i see a day ‘skipped’ as a day not to grow.

if your going to skip a workout; you should be sick, on vacation, getting laid or paid. (i did NOT mean for that to rhyme)

will you crumble and fall if you miss a workout? no, but if you miss a day…you MISS A DAY!!

Skipping workouts is also dependent upon the workout and the frequency with which you train that group and how often you skip workouts. I have been training legs twice a week for over 2 months now, and yesterday I skipped my first workout (a leg day). I met 2/4 of B rock’s criteria, so thats my reason.

It is the first workout I have skipped in 9-10 weeks, it was a group I train twice a week, AND it is my strongest bodypart. I am not stressing it.

EDIT: Wanted to add something else. I know I did not drink enough water or eat enough food in general on Sunday and Monday before I got home. If I went to the gym I would just be spinning my wheels. I spent the rest of Monday hydrating and getting some food back in my body so in a few hours from now I can continue my training. Sometimes its better to skip a workout and save yourself the de-motivation of a shitty training session if you know/feel like you are not going to perform well. This is especially true if you are not properly fed or hydrated beforehand.

It depends on the circumstances and such - but letting yourself slip into that pattern would be bad i’d think.

Some days i’ll feel absolutely shit and want to go home…and sometimes I do. It’s not always terrible to listen to your body if you know you’re just gonna be spinning your wheels.

But I only do this when I know I can come in another day and make up the workout, and if I feel like shit on THAT day then I just make myself do it anyways.

Skipping an occasional workout can do you a lot of good. Skipping them regularly will retard your progress.

I haven’t worked chest, back or shoulders for weeks due to an injury. Haven’t lost an ounce. Haven’t put ON an ounce either, though!

well one thing is certain, doing nothing physical won’t induce growth

Thanks for the responses.

Njrusmc mentioned proper hydration/nutrition before a workout. What is proper hydration? Clear urine? Why would slight dehydration damage workout performance?

As for proper nutrition, how do you know your body has what it needs? Does this come down to calorie counting and such?

Related question: How cost effective are eggs at packing in the protein?

[quote]nowakc wrote:
It depends on the circumstances and such - but letting yourself slip into that pattern would be bad i’d think.

Some days i’ll feel absolutely shit and want to go home…and sometimes I do. It’s not always terrible to listen to your body if you know you’re just gonna be spinning your wheels.

But I only do this when I know I can come in another day and make up the workout, and if I feel like shit on THAT day then I just make myself do it anyways.[/quote]

I do the exact same thing. If I am just not “into” it on one day, I push everything back and make it up on Saturday. If I do that, and I still dont want to do it, tuff shit, go lift and if its a less than stellar moment, so be it at least I did it.

On the other hand, generally with me, 2 months or so of getting after it as mentioned above, I hit a wall and need a break. Everything starts to fall apart and I take a week or so off, get stuff caught up around the house and hit it again as soon as I feel its right. Sure I am not growing that week, but my home life is better, my life is better, I am not injuring myself and I am not getting burnt out (a big fear of mine)

That’s actually a good question from the TS. I missed a day this week because I was sick (flu…I failed on my warmup sets!). I fretted over what I’d do (oh no, did I just set myself back five weeks?).

Sounds stupid, but as a newb…I don’t know what to expect.

So it’s good to know that I didn’t severely set myself back.

If I remember basic body physiology right…you technically make gains when your body is repairing itself (off days)…not while you’re tearing it up…

I try to NEVER miss a workout, but sometimes life really does just get in the way.

If I’m sick, and it’s more than just a head cold…I don’t see any reason to add more stress to my body, and gyms…by their nature tend to have lots of germs…though I MAY go for an easy run/walk to get some fresh air.

If I get home from work and I’m spent…I’ll ask myself…am I just being a lazy ass today? or am I truly just mentally and physically fatigued…if it’s the second…and I feel like I’m going to go in and half-ass my workout…then I just don’t bother. I’m of the mindset that 3 or 4 high quality workouts are WAY better than say 5+ half-assed workouts.

…but that’s just me.

Also…something worth considering:

http://www.flexcart.com/members/elitefts/default.asp?cid=370&m=PD&pid=2795

I’ve never used it, but I’ve heard lots of great things about it. Disclaimer: My uncle is part of the EFS team, but is not Jim (author of that e-book)

HTH

personally id say get in the gym at least 4x a week. i dont remember if ive done 3 days or not but i doubt i did too much that way.

other than that if you miss a day, make up for it. i miss days, usually its shoulder because sometimes i just dont feel like working them. its kinda silly to me honestly. anyway, you should have tons of other oppurtunities if youre only lifting 3x anyway i mean youve got 4 other days to pick that day up again.

i think the biggest mistake begginers make is getting too attached to everything. yes, lifting is extremely important but i know for me i made it the most important part of my day and sometimes you need to address other things before you get into the gym and address other priorities. ehhh i dont know where im going with this, its ok to have breathing room just dont mix up breathing with slacking off.

[quote]johnward82 wrote:

On the other hand, generally with me, 2 months or so of getting after it as mentioned above, I hit a wall and need a break. Everything starts to fall apart and I take a week or so off, get stuff caught up around the house and hit it again as soon as I feel its right. Sure I am not growing that week, but my home life is better, my life is better, I am not injuring myself and I am not getting burnt out (a big fear of mine)[/quote]

Yeah that’s happened to me as well, but usually just taking 3 days off in a row (just 1 workout) where I just rest will make me feel a lot better. I took a week off a couple weeks ago - but that was actually planned far in advance as I had gone 5 months never having 4 days straight of rest.

I think the important thing is to plan it ahead of time - if every time you go to the gym, feel just a little crappy and say “oh, I need to rest because i’m burned out!”, well, obviously you aren’t going to get anywhere. Plain and simple your body doesn’t like the stress you put on it by weightlifting so you DO have to push yourself and kick your ass into gear every once in a while.

Thats why I would rather err on the side of a little too much intensity rather than too little. If I burn myself out (as long as its not too quick) it’s in my opinion a good thing since it means i’ve been working hard.

Your body adapts to the demands you regularly place upon it. Not the demands you place upon it once.