To ever improve at bodybuilding, you always have to beat what you did last time, today. Stringing together a long run of 16, 32 or 64 workouts in a row where you are progressively improving is what this is all about– not to mention how the body protects itself with an adaption (AKA more muscle mass). There are certainly those days where you are just off. You’re just really not feeling it. …You know its not going to happen.
Now… you can go in and try your regular workout, get ‘tomato canned’ with the logbook making you its b*tch and be entirely unproductive…
…OR you can “get weird with it“.
…Here’s an example: About 50 times a year I’m bombing away at my regular leg workouts, and I leave there like a truck ran me over. (Success!) A job well done. The logbook by and large gets its come-up-ance.
About 2 times out of the year I just don’t have it. Truthfully, it’s just not going to happen. (I usually consciously make this decision about an hour before the gym but there are times I just can tell during the warm-ups.) “Dante you don’t have it today. Sorry bro, you just don’t have it.”
So this is what I’ve done for years. On a leg day where I just don’t have it (it’s rare- like I said- but they do happen) I chuck my regular workout to the side and go for the Dante Trudel World Record on the 50-rep Leg Press. I go in and do the following:
Hypothetical Weight x 16 reps
More Hypothetical Weight x 12 reps
More Hypothetical Weight x 8 reps
and if I feel as though I’m ready at that point…
More Hypothetical Weight for an all-out assault-to-the-death for 50 reps.
Yes, that workout is short- but it is brutal.
Then, I stretch and get the heck out of the gym.
On the final set, I’ll get to 35 reps and I will absolutely want to rack it. I will find some willpower and some way to claw my way through those last 15 reps or perish trying. If you do good, deep, strict reps and use a decent amount of weight (weight that you have serious doubt with) you will make 50 with (and somehow, some way you WILL yourself to get 50 with), trust me… you will be bombed. Stretch out. Get the hell out of there. Come back to your normal workout next time.
Trust me, you’re still gaining because you didn’t do your regular workout (and failed).
You did a workout that was way outside your box and comfort level.
Remember: “Getting weird with it” = Adaption.
I also do something similar if I ever have days besides legs that I’m ‘out of sorts’. I’ll pick one exercise for that body part that I have either never done before or rarely have done and I’ll do the same scenario up above. The only difference is I’ll do it for 20 reps instead of 50.
The main take-away? Stay motivated. Get weird. Don’t let your “out of sorts” days take you out of the progression ladder!
How do you handle days when you lack motivation?