T Nation

-=zero point=-

i havent posted or hit this board in a while, but as always i come here for the best advice...

after about 5-6 months of eating intelligently, training properly, and basically conducting my physical conditioning in accordance with the philosophies that this unbelievable site suggest, i saw vast improvements in my physique, energy, metabolism--nearly all physical dimensions saw an improvement of some kind...i went from 215 to 185...ive hovered around that weight for a month now, and during this time all my lifts have increased....

but i digress...fate has placed me in a cruel situation...after all my improvements (hopefully with many more to come), this summer must be spent with virtually little or no training...the reason? i'm in an intensive law school program that runs from may 13-august 18...

now while i know many of you will be inclined to tell me that this is all about time management, i can make it work, etc, i ask that you please assume that i have no more than 1 hour free each weekday, maybe 2 hours free on saturday's and sundays...i live half an hour away from my gym, so you can see the basic difficulty---i have virtually no time to train...going to the gym during the weekdays is pretty much out of the question.

i'd really love to know what you'd do if you were in this horrendous situation..eat slightly below maintenence? slightly above? push ups/situps [or any equipment-free exercises] around the house during study breaks? supplements? i would be content if i saw my body remain in the state it's in now...any real improvements during this summer would be impossible...and for the record, my metabolism is pretty elevated right now, i'm 21, 5'10, and squat 300 1RM. thanks everyone!

ps- i think these kinds of situations arise in everyone's lives at some point or another...maybe testosterone could put out some kind of emergency short-term maintenence article

Aspects of Renegade training may be exactly what you are looking for. Unweighted GPP work, rope skipping, kettlebell (or dumbell) circuits would all be great things to fall back on and can easily be done at home. It is also some really tough work and does not take much time. Throw in some pull-ups of all varieties (you can do these almost anywhere) and you have an arsenal of training options.

Yup. Freehand (bodyweight) exercises and maintenance cals should be okay for the summer. Vary your sets and reps just like you would normally (i.e., do huge sets of 50-100 rep bodyweight squats for a few weeks, then get your girlfriend to climb on your back and see if you can get 10 or 20 for a few more weeks. Like that.).

If you can make it to the gym 2x a week [ maybe on the weekend ] do one upper and one loverbody workout, other days do some sprinting or skipping in the morning.
In the gym stick to big compound movements.

Check out the first workout from Ian King’s 4-part Limping series to get some good bodyweight leg exercises – single-leg squats and King deadlifts, along with some others. For upper body, try lots of push-up variations, like single-arm, clapping, and diamond-grip push-ups (and hand-stand push-ups against the wall for shoulders, and pull-up variations, like chins, towel chins, wide-grip, close-grip, etc.

If you can afford to do so, I would also suggest getting some adjustable dumbbells so you can get more variance into your routine.

Good luck with the law-school thing -- what sort of program is it anyhow?

Just wanted to add - try to add exercises throughout the day whenever you have 5 or 10 min free or do sets of exercises every 15 min or so between bouts of study…increase the volume of exercies by spreading it out throughout the day…this should also help keep your metabolism elevated throughout the day and actually keep energy levels up and improve calorie burning. Good luck.

Drop out of law school! There are too many lawyers in the world already. Or, try a bodyweight program.

I had a buddy in prison who gained absolutely incredible amounts of both strength AND muscle mass, maintained a ripped (looked like under 9-10% BF, easily) physique, without any weights. The state had removed weight training in his 1st of 3 years, so he went entirely to bodyweight exercises – pushups, squats, chins. Did anything he could to make them harder, including doing them one handed or one-legged, having a guy sit on his back (yeah, I did tease him about that a lot, even if that was before Oz came out)…whatever worked. And he did what most people here would think impossible – when I saw him ‘outside’ for the first time, he was absolutely monstrous in size and muscle definition. True, he has some incredible genetics, but he became buffer than ever with no weights, no suppliments, no protein powder, no anabolics, and kinda crappy food.

and don’t forget about chinning bars. They can be found in sports stores or even regular department stores a lot of the time.

Just try to adopt the mindset that optimal is unrealistic and some work is better than none. You’ll be surprised at how well you hold your level of conditioning with the ideas above.

Again, ideal training, diet and rest are unrealistic so take a “do what can be done” type of attitude. It’s difficult after having an extremely structured, successful training cycle to have to adopt sub-optimal habits. Just remember that there are lifters out there that do everything wrong and still make gains.

Good Luck.

BITCH BITCH BITCH!, If you WANT to train you will ALWAYS be able to find time. At least 1 day a week covering : Squat/Powercleans/Incline/Pullups. Ditch your Arms and Shoulders (Cause you don’t have the time, right?) Continue to Eat at least 5 meals a day, and 1 other day of the week perform sprints. 50 yd dash guidlines are good.
Charles Poliquin ounce said, “I haven’t missed a workout in 6 years”, there are no excuses there are always 24 hour gyms close by.

Demon, no offense, but you don’t know what in the hell you’re talking about. There are times when working out is a near impossibility. Until you’re put in that situation, please keep your derogatory and uninformed comments to yourself.

You can do dips on the inside corner of any available kitchen countertop, or even on an old-folks’ walker frame. The pullup bar in the door frame is great. One legged squats with the other foot behind you, hooked on a chair or sofa cushion are very effective, too.

thanks a bunch guys, your responses have definately provided me with some good ideas as well as a morale boost...

in case any of you are still wondering about this program im doing, it's basically an accelerated law school program; you do your first semester of law school (contracts 1 and 2, torts, criminal law, elements of law)during the summer between your junior and senior year of undergrad...after that you go back to your undergrad and complete your senior year...then during the summer after you graduate you do your second semester of law school (what i'm doing now: civil procedure 1 and 2, property 1 and 2, constitutional law and legal writing)...this fall i go straight into my second year of law school, thus having shaved a year off my time in law school

time wasn't a problem at all last year because i lived in the city (NYC)..but i ran out of money this summer, and i have to commute (about 2 hours each way) from long island...i hardly have time to finish each night's assignments let alone get ahead and review...and since the classes are ultra-compressed (classes normally taught over a year are taught in 3 months) it's a very difficult situation...

since that's already a lot more than any of you wanted to know i won't go into the other details that have effectively drained all my free time...but thanks again everyone for your input...i'll keep you updated on my physical (and mental) status from time to time. thanks again and wish me luck!

Goodness, I have lifted for at least 6 days a week for the last three years in med school. If you want it bad enough, you will find the time. 'Nuff said.

If I were in your position I would just do 45 minutes of cardio 5-6 times a week. It will relieve the stress from your study’s and keep
your metabolism going so you don’t gain weight
back.Good Luck to you :slight_smile:

Renegade Training or even Combat Conditioning would work for your situation. You can still train (at home) - would also provide a nice change of pace. Another thing is when my training suffers, so does my ability to concentrate - believe it or not. Maintaining some level of physical activity really helps my creativity. Remember that.
So it is rather important that you maintain.

Also, consider maybe a One day or Two day a week routine. Perform just compound lifts. Squats one day, deadlifts the other, etc. Just train heavy. Sounds likes losing fat or getting fat is not the concern, so don’t waste your time with cardio. When I don’t have time but want to work out, I always choose the weights over cardio. Would rather continue with training heavy and maintain my LBM and strength.