What to Do when Life Hits?

First of all, I have ordered the books (2nd edition, Beyond and Forever) a couple of weeks ago but haven’t received them yet. I bet there’s a good answer in there.

Basically I’ve been having a hard week, because life. A lot of stress, not enough sleep and so on. I’m really menatlly beaten up and I know I won’t be able to go all in and perform in the PR sets. I’m doing BBB 5x5 @80% btw.

What’s the best thing to do in this scenario? Take a deload week? Hit the minimum reps and progress as usual? Business as usual and just do as many reps as I can muster anyways? Do the week with minimum reps, pause and then redo the same week again with the PR sets?

Physically I don’t feel in need of a deload but it sort of ties together with being mentally drained. What’s your thoughts?

You’d be surprised how well having a number in your head the night before and a little bit of visualisation before sleeping (while doing your mobility) can work out. Regardless of what else is going on in your life.

For this round, I’d get the reps in and go. Then never let myself be defeated before I’ve even thrown a punch ever again.

In the newer books, you’ll see how to program PR sets into a greater program so they are phased in and out. That may help you out a bit.

When ‘‘life hits’’ I just go in maintenance/having fun in the gym mode. An instinctive (do what I feel like doing that day) full body workout 1-3x a week. This applies to really special situations, perhaps something you would do like 1-3 weeks a year.

If that’s not an option, taking 1-2 weeks off lifting isn’t terrible. You can focus on doing stretching routines at home for 30-60 mins per night before bed.

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My instinct would be to go in there tomorrow morning, get the warmup and first couple of sets done and then see how my body feels and decide from there. Either Ibjust get the minimum reps in or I cut down on the volume this week and take it as a deload. If I’m feeling better I’ll push through it.

What I was wondering was if there’s a specific 531 protocol to follow in these scenarios, when in need of a deload/rest week in the middle of a cycle.

You will find Jim’s answer in 2nd edition when you read “Having a less than Stellar Day” When ever life hits me I go with the mentality of getting to the gym and doing “I’m not doing jack sh!t” I go hit the prescribed reps for the main lift and call it a day.

Thanks! This was what I was looking for :slight_smile:

For what it’s worth, I went to the gym this morning, warmed up and decided to push through this week and take a big deload next week inbetween cycles instead. As expected I couldn’t perform to PR standards and ended up with 2 reps less than what would’ve been the goal if I was fresh and rested. I usually perform noticeably worse on the 1+ week though (especially on squats) since I’ve been doing pretty much exclusively high reps the last 6 months and are a lot more adapted to that. Because of that I’m not too disappointed, I got three good reps in that actually felt really good and then I crashed and burned on the 4th, got it up but it was a real grinder.

Thanks for all the input! I plan on doing only the 531 deload sets next week and then work on mobility and lighter conditioning the rest of the sessions.