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I think I need a very low stress block

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  • I think I need a very low stress block

    Hi Doctors,
    I've been training using your templates for a little over two years now and I love them. I'm coming up to the end of the hypertrophy I template which I have enjoyed for the most part. However, over the last two-three weeks my motivation to train and energy have been really low. My training sessions are getting longer and my session RPE has been climbing (though I am not overshooting RPE for my individual sets.) I'm attributing this to extra life stress right now. The COVID-19 outbreak has been really stressful for me. I'm in outpatient healthcare, so work has been really challenging as we try to transition to telemedicine. I still have adequate time to train, I just am struggling with motivating myself to do something hard. Every time I lift I find myself daydreaming of stopping after I finish this template. I anticipate the work related stress I'm experiencing now will continue for 1-2 more months.

    I could use some advice on what to do next. I know that stopping lifting completely will not be good for me physically or mentally. It feels like maybe I should run a template (My original plan was to repeat hypertrophy I) but knock the set RPE goals back by 1-2 RPE until I feel better. I'm okay with not making progress during this period. Is there something you suggest for people who need to just maintain? Would switching to a time crunch or endurance template be a good strategy? I have a garage gym with a squat rack and a rowing machine so equipment shouldn't be a problem. I think lifting will be good for me if it feels fun and easy rather than challenging during this period of my life.

    Thanks in advance for your advice and for all the great content.


  • #2

    Thanks for the post and hope you're doing okay during this time of uncertainty.

    If I had my pick, I'd run the Time Crunch template with RPE taken down 1-2 points, but otherwise keep it the same. It should cut down on your training time and be pretty manageable intensity wise. You can also replace the exercises for variants you like more. Either way would work.

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    • #3
      Thank you for this advice. It is working out great for me. My motivation to train is still low, but I am enjoying the shorter workouts. I started off by lowering the RPE a point, but now I'm up to doing the workouts as prescribed and my session RPE has been fine. Thanks for helping me out.