Physical Jobs and Lifting

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by DocStrange, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. DocStrange

    DocStrange Green Belt

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    So I've run into a predicament with my lifting recently, and I was hoping to pull some ideas from here from people who may have dealt with similar situations. The short of it is I've started a carpentry apprenticeship this past week, and will now be doing physical labor on construction sites eight to ten hours a day. The work is pretty intense, and my day right now includes moving large amounts of lumber around, climbing up and down ladders with equipment, lots of hammering/ sawing, etc.. So by the end of the day, I've burned a lot of calories and I'm pretty drained. I'm finding its definitely not compatible with how I've been lifting until now (I'm running a Starting Strength based linear progression).

    I'm looking for a new program (not making gains with linear progression) and I'm trying to find something that will be sustainable with my work schedule. I lift just for recreation, and I have no other sports, so my focus is basically on the three big lifts (I would like to compete in powerlifting one day, although I'm no where near a competitive level of strength). I've thought about trying 5/3/1, but I would really like to try a weekly cycle program before I move into monthly progress. Right now I'm thinking about a 4 day split routine (based on the one in Practical Programming) so I have shorter, less intense workouts, but I'm not sure lifting on more days will be the answer. I'm definitely still brainstorming possibilities.

    So that's my issue, has anybody had to overcome anything similar? What kind of program did you end up running? What else did you do to increase your ability to keep up a lifting schedule? I did a Starting Strength style workout today (squats, bench, and chins, at heavy weight for my strength level) after a ten hour work day, and it was definitely not something I can see myself sustaining (I can tell I'm going to be very, very sore tomorrow). I'd like to start doing something different next week, so by the end of this week I'm hoping to have a new program sorted out.
     
  2. Cratos

    Cratos Banned Banned

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    I worked landscaping for 4 months during the summer. I usually got 5 or less hours of sleep each night.

    I still got stronger during those 4 months.

    How bad do you want it?
     
  3. DocStrange

    DocStrange Green Belt

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    Thank you for your helpful and meaningful reply. I'm truly in awe of how much of a badass you are.

    Does anyone have any other suggestions?
     
  4. Keosawa

    Keosawa Black Belt

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    Powerlifting is a blue-collar sport, and so plenty of top lifters have physically demanding jobs in addition to their training. Just start with what is reasonable for your current work capacity and build up over time. Training frequency will, over time, make the training itself easier to recover from; the key right now is to manage volume and intensity.

    My advice is that if powerlifting is something you want to do, do everything in your power to ensure proper recovery. Make absolute sure that you're sleeping enough every night, and if your schedule doesn't allow for 7-8 hours, get as many hours as it does allow for (or--and this is preferable--change your life to make it work). Make sure your nutrition is conducive to recovery, and make sure you're doing simple things like keeping hydrated while at work. Initially, you might be sore, but you'll adapt to it.
     
  5. Amerikuracana

    Amerikuracana Yellow Card Yellow Card

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    I had a really heavy delivery job (commercial flooring) and it made me a really strong grappler.
     
  6. DocStrange

    DocStrange Green Belt

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    Cool, thanks for the reply, sleep and diet is going to be a big adjustment. I've been trying very hard to get enough sleep in this past week, but I will definitely need to try even harder. I drink a LOT of water since I started lifting, and go through quite a bit every break I get, so I think hydration is somewhere I'm on the right track.

    Actually, I need to go to sleep now, but I will be checking this thread on my break tomorrow, looking forward to hearing some other peoples' experiences/ advice.
     
  7. Keosawa

    Keosawa Black Belt

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    It's actually not bad advice. There's probably no "ideal" programming for someone whose work-rate has recently increased exponentially, and there's going to be an adjustment period whether you're using monthly progression, weekly progression, training three times per week, or training four times per week. I personally think these are of less consequence than simply managing volume and intensity, but you're still likely to feel lousy for the near future, and you're going to have to be OK with that.
     
  8. Cratos

    Cratos Banned Banned

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    Wtf were you looking for?

    Someone to hold your hand?

    I used to drink a shitload of chocolate milk and eat as much as I could throughout the day.

    "How bad do you want it" isn't me being a badass. It's a legitimate question. Some people let life cripple their lifting. Why? Sometimes they just don't want it bad enough.

    I've dealt with a similar situation and gave you an answer.
     
  9. Fighting Sprite

    Fighting Sprite Green Belt

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    I agree with him. This past summer I worked 70 hours a week setting up fence. I let that become my excuse to not progress. I should have simply nutted up. I should have gotten the work done, eaten a shit ton and sleep as much as I could. This is what I will do this coming summer when I'm back at it.

    EDIT: Something I'm going to try, which you could as well. Get one of these
    [​IMG]

    fill it with milk, and drink that throughout the day. That should add a ton of calories to your diet, and help you recover.
     
  10. itheuser

    itheuser Brown Belt

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    Never come to Sherdog for advice on anything.

    Ultimately you have to decide if you want to be meat head power-lifter, or a carpenter.

    You can't do both.

    Refer to my first statement.
     
  11. drew2143

    drew2143 Yellow Belt

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    Cratos makes a good point. You have to make lifting a priority if you really want to progress. i also work in landscaping during the summer months and have another job during the weekends. The hardest part is consuming enough calories to keep my body weight up. I always try to stop and eat something every two hours. I've ran 5/3/1 before and found it works out pretty well, because the workouts don't take a long time. That being said, you're going to have to suck it up. If getting stronger is really important to you, you may have to sacrifice a few hours of sleep a night in order to reach your goals.
     
  12. K1HerosNakamura

    K1HerosNakamura Black Belt

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    Two words: Gainer shakes. Drink one between breakfast and lunch, and one between lunch and when you get off work.

    Gains r guaranteed.
     
  13. Pathogenic

    Pathogenic Wo Cao Ni Ma

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    Who needs weight gainer when chocolate milk exists?:)
     
  14. Keosawa

    Keosawa Black Belt

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    Well fuck you too then.
     
  15. LegioTitan

    LegioTitan Guest


    Lol, wut??
     
  16. Jester

    Jester Don't rope swing over a dirty river Senior Moderator

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    obviously this guy is a smart cookie and not a meathead like everyone around here

    ......
     
  17. tsukongk

    tsukongk Orange Belt

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    How about a ballerina? Can I still be ballerina and a powerlifter?
     
  18. StabbyMcHatchet

    StabbyMcHatchet Add StabbyMcHatchet on Instagram Facebook Twitter

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    Serious answer: Your body will adjust and become used to performing your routine carpentry work and it will be a non-issue once you reach that point.
    One month should be more than enough. Just make sure you get enough sleep. (I am my own worst enemy that way)
     
  19. ASUThermo

    ASUThermo Wide Right: ╚╦╝ ○

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    That is the stupidest shit I have ever read on this website, what a joke.

    When I worked for my father doing the same thing as you I would be sunburned and beat after most work days, but as others have said, through the day load up on food to help get through. I used pre-workout drinks and shit like that for a boost as well. 'How bad do you want it?' IS a great question to ask yourself.

    Years ago I trained with Jim and Dan Miller when they first started getting into BJJ and eventually MMA. They both worked construction with their father every day before practice, look at them now.
     
  20. iama

    iama Orange Belt

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    Ok. I used to work outside in all weather conditions, brutal labour but like you I wanted to lift and get bigger and stronger. From personal experience if what you do is tough I recommend forgetting cardio just lift heavy 3-4 times a week, that means squats deadlifts all the usual lifts, and eat as much as you want when you want. Seriously because you expend alot of energy at work plus to get gains from lifting you must eat lots and lots protein especially. It is doable.
     

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