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Training 1 Week On/1 Week Off?

I’m going to possibly be getting an extra workload every other week for a couple months, which will have me alternating between 40 hours one week, and around 84 hours the next week.

What I was thinking about doing, is during my down weeks, training absolutely as hard as possible, training twice a day, before and after work, and hitting each muscle group twice that week. Almost to the point of overtraining. Then for the next week, just completely taking it off and leaving it for recovery.

Has anyone tried a plan like this, or is there any out there? I’ve seen one for twice a day training, but it’s not quite what I’m looking for. Any suggestions, or opinions? If worst comes to worst, I’ll be fine with maintaining, but I would like to make as much progress as I can.

[quote]Tattoo85 wrote:
I’m going to possibly be getting an extra workload every other week for a couple months, which will have me alternating between 40 hours one week, and around 84 hours the next week.[/quote]
First off, geez, glad I’m not you. Secondly, what’s “a couple of months”? Two or four months? Until next summer? Is it really indefinite but your boss told you it’s just a few months so you didn’t punch him in the larynx before quitting?

I’m thinking this would still leave you drained and feeling like microwaved crap during your non-training, mentally-intense week.

Training one week on/one off will result in maintenance at best and regression at worst.

Progress in what? What’s the primary goal, fat loss? Hypertrophy? Strength?

Rather than training with an either/or program and switching depending on your work week, I’d try to adopt one program that you could do the entire time. Do you have a gym within a block of your house or any equipment at home? That would give you one less excuse to punk out on training during your crazy-busy week.

While it depends on your training goals, consider switching to a low volume plan that requires about three hours of total training time, three of four days a week.

EDT is another great program that requires minimal in-gym time.
http://www.T-Nation.com/article/bodybuilding/edt_lose_the_fat_keep_the_strength

You’re obviously in a less-than-ideal situation, but with the right planning, you can still make some solid progress.

Can easily make progress this way, pushing into a slightly overtrained state and then backing off is a very effective way to train and a lot of Russian programs were based on this.

I’d leave two a days on the back burner for awhile and start off training very hard 5 days a week. If you feel that’s still not enough then gradually up the volume from there.

Also try and get in one light/deload workout in your off week if possible which will aid recovery.

You could train twice a day, it is a good way to increase mass. It might (probably will) make you feel like shit on your work-intense week, which will be REALLY bad.

I’d just try to squeeze 2 squat days in in those overcrowded weeks, and train regularly in the other weeks.

What kind of work do you do during that 84h week? Is it mentally stressful, require a lot of attention or physical activity? Or are you just hanging out waiting for something to go wrong?

If you’re truly able to recover during your busy week, then go all out.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
First off, geez, glad I’m not you. Secondly, what’s “a couple of months”? Two or four months? Until next summer? Is it really indefinite but your boss told you it’s just a few months so you didn’t punch him in the larynx before quitting?[/quote]

No, it definately won’t be indefinite. It’ll be no more than 3 months at the longest. That punch in the larynx would be hard to resist if I had any doubts about the length of time. :wink:

Hypertrophy is the main goal. I’m currently 230lbs, so maintenance would be acceptable for a couple months if that’s the best I can get.

Unfortionately, I live in the middle of nowhere, closest gym to me is 30-40 minutes away, depending on traffic, and I have no room for any equipment in my current place. That was another reason for thinking about doing one week on, one week off, as I do horrible when I have to cut into my sleep, and that would be neccessary to keep training in anything besides bodyweight exercises.

I was looking at EDT as an option actually, although IMO it doesn’t really fit in with my goals exactly at the moment, it might still be an interesting change of pace for these couple months. Anyway, I definately appreciate the help!

[quote]HoratioSandoval wrote:
What kind of work do you do during that 84h week? Is it mentally stressful, require a lot of attention or physical activity? Or are you just hanging out waiting for something to go wrong?

If you’re truly able to recover during your busy week, then go all out.[/quote]

I’m in Law Enforcement, working in the prison most of the time, along with going out with P&P and State Police, doing some of the training, and other miscellaneous things. Most of it is fairly routine, but every day obviously has the potential for something to happen. I don’t think it’s too much that I can’t handle recovering from a hard weeks training though.

I say go for it. Try ramping up through the week, reaching peak volume and intensity on wednesday or thursday, and then take the weekend off before your big work week.

If I were you I’d leave everything alone, but during those ridiculous (truthfully ridiculous for being demanded of, and accepted by your union) weeks, keep the same “schedule” for workouts, if you will, but replace them with some quick bodyweight work… Anything you can do from home, pushups, pullups and sissy squats/bodyweight squats.

People seem to forget that frequency is important, and those lighter workouts should help with recovery to a degree, assuming you dont kill yourself with them.

I know this is probably thrown out too often, but have you though about doing a 20 rep squat routine? Once you start moving some serious weight, you could probably get away with doing such a routine once or twice a week and still make excellent gains. Extremely time efficient.

There are some good ideas in this article:

You could get away with doing the 20 rep squat routine 3 times on your ‘easy’ weeks and once on your busy weeks.

The single session should provide enough stimulation. There should also be a supercompensation effect from the the three session week (without having to run yourself into the ground to do it), so you should be growing on your busy week.

This should result in good, steady gains, and you wouldn’t have to settle for a ‘maintenance’ program.