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I go to gym 3 days a week on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday (chest, shoulders, biceps/back, triceps/legs). This Friday, however, I'm going to leave the city till the next Tuesday. Is it better to reschedule Saturday's workout to Friday, or, increase the amount of Thursday's training? Or, should I do some kind of exercises during the trip? What is the general advice for inevitable training skips?

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Whatever you decide to do should be dependent upon your training goals (eg. Training for a competition or race, etc.). Missing a training day is not the end of the world as long as it does not become a habit. Life happens, and, sometimes it impacts your training. Often, this results in “training guilt” especially if you’re a person that regularly trains. You might feel uneasy/guilty about missing a session when, in fact, a short training break may be just what you need. So, take a look back at your recent training history, and, see if you’ve been pretty strict about it. If so, I would just skip the workout and perform some light training on your trip. Then, pick up your training when you return.

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  • I agree with this answer; if no competition is around the corner, it's not mandatory to reschedule. Of course, if you're gonna make yourself neurotic over skipping a workout, then reschedule it to give yourself peace of mind. Fitness goal is a long-term goal; you become fit as long as you keep working on it :). – Kneel-Before-ZOD Jul 1 '15 at 12:33
  • I mean, it's only my 3rd week of training and I'm not going to have a "training guilt". I just want to know what solution would be more effective in terms of my overall progress – Herokiller Jul 1 '15 at 12:41
  • @Herokiller - Meh. Either skip it and move on, or double up as marten suggests. Either way, it's not really going to make much of a difference. If you want, since it's on a trip, you could do a day of body weight exercises. – JohnP Jul 1 '15 at 16:06
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I'll just answer this from my own experience.

For my job I often have to leave for a few days and can't access any strength training facilities. Worse (or better?) my job is physically demanding so I come back to town and I'm pretty beat up, sleep deprived, and didn't eat so well. It's a real drag because I can't maintain the progressive strength training schedule I'd like to. How I handle it:

I've had to understand that physical fitness (to me) is about having my body in a good-enough shape to do whatever I throw at it. I don't really lose size or strength during the summers. The only downside is that two weeks off and then 80% of my 5RM makes me wicked sore for a couple of days. Still, it's worth it.

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I would increase the amount of exercise BEFORE the trip, since you know have a slot for recovery. Whatever workout you would do at the time of the trip, do it before instead, together with whatever you would do otherwise.

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  • so, like 3 hours of back/triceps/legs is okay? not too much? – Herokiller Jul 1 '15 at 12:48
  • No, the whole "you shouldn't work out more than 45 minutes" is a myth. It's all about total workout volume and your recovery period. – Mårten Jul 1 '15 at 13:09
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Exercise during the trip even though its not necessary in this case. Start now to get into the habit of it. Reschedule is better than doubling up. I go for hitting some performance highs if I skip a work out, and generally don't regret it.

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