Training Inconsistency: How To Continue?

Ok guys, here’s the deal — I am currently doing Ian King’s intermediate program from the Book of Muscle. Its going, well not great, but OK. Law School has managed to throw a serious wrench into things (it seems I’m short on time, or when I have time, I’m so dead tired I can’t move, etc - combined with frequent weekend trips with no gym access…) and my regularity with lifting has been, well, less than ideal. Under the program, I am supposed to lift 3 times a week. On average, I’d say I’ve made it maybe 1.5 times a week (usually twice, but occasionally once or not at all, hence the 1.5).

Despite this, I have followed the book’s advice for when workouts are missed - just keep going like it didnt happen (ie, if you do A and B on week 1 start with C on week 2). I have even managed to make some muscle gains, though strength gains have been minimal (bench sucks and always has for reasons I do not know, I have a knee screwed up with tendonitis, so my squat and deadlift are school-girl level as a consequence - though I have been working up ever so slowly. other lifts are decent).

So that’s the history - now to the present - the combination of Thanksgiving (got a so-so workout at a park rec center with my cousin, otherwise no workouts that week - no gym access at my mom’s place) and final exams (precisely 1 workout since thanksgiving), well, im feeling pretty down. Normally I’d take the two weeks of finals off, and not worry about it, but when combined with with my overall inconsistency this semester, its bothersome.

Now, I don’t need my balls busted about being inconsistent - I know I need to fix that. What I am wondering is what I do next - as I see it, I have a few options:

  1. Restart the whole intermediate workout. Idea being, I’ve been too inconsistent to get anything out of it, so I am hardly “ready to move on” to a more advanced stage. I should return to part 1 and do it right this time.

  2. Do one extra week of the stage of the workout I just completed, to bring myself back up after the Thanksgiving / Finals fiasco, then move on with the program.

  3. Ignore the inconsistency - fix it of course - but move on with the program.

So, what would you guys suggest? I’m thinking 1 or 2 right now… Regardless, once my last final is done tomorrow, I’m back in the gym hardcore. I’ll be taking a PLANNED break from the 21st - 28th (at a relative’s for Christmas), but other than that, I’m re-committed. I’ll just have to pay to work out somewhere if I’m out of town.

Thanks in advance for the advice!

I’ve never read the book myself, but does IK say how much should you progress strength-wise? If he does then you could pretty much figure out where you are progress-wise and restart, but not from the very beginning. Start where you’re comfortable. Also if you really have a busy schedule don’t train to failure. I found from personal experience that if you take just about any failure-based program with decent volume and intensity and follow it without going to failure it will work miracles because you’ll recover much better. As long as you change things up just a bit every two weeks and then get a new program every two months.

hope it helps

Thanks for the thoughts bro. I think what I may do is do the stage 2 workouts for about 2 extra weeks. I did pretty well getting through stage 1, so I figure there is no reason to go back that far… re-doing 2/3 of stage 2 should allow me to build back up and get back on track.