Training in exam periods
Last semester i got zero training done for 6-7 weeks, of which 4-5 was studying for exams + exams themselves and then i had a 2 week vacation to the US afterwards.
Lost a lot of progress because of this, especially since i had only trained for like 4 months at that point.
I really want to train to not regress, but on the other hand i feel like i have to use all my awake time to study and feel bad about myself if i don't.
I'm curious as to what you other college students in here (must be some) do during exam periods / finals / whatever?
I've rarely felt so pressured during finals week, but in the US work tends to be more scattered throughout the semester rather than with extremely high stake exams at the end of the semester, so it's more like 2-4 weeks where you're busy but rarely too busy to make it into the gym.
Is there no way you can make it to the gym for at least a couple sessions a week? I've always found that ideas need to marinate in my head anyway, so there are diminishing returns to how much I obsess about my exams. Fitting in time for exercise usually left me refreshed and better able to cope with another several hours of studying afterwards.
I think that if you cant spend 2 hours 3 times a week studying even when things get crazy then training is not a big priority to you. If you cant find a way to make 6 hours out of 168 happen then then isn't a lot we can do for you. Find a way to get it done, we've all been there, and the people who make it happen are the people who make real gains
Originally Posted by Skander
I guess it depends on what kind of exam i'm studying for. I'm not really writing any papers or anything, just reading a bunch of shit and doing exercises to apply it. Two of my exams this semester are closed book, so i just gotta remember everything. Same for one oral one. And for the last open book one you don't really have much time to use the books anyway, gotta know most of it by heart.
So in some sense there's never a good time to stop and have ideas marinate in my head.
That being said, i fully understand your point. It's hard for your brain to just keep going for several hours without real breaks.
I might find those maybe 2 hours used on training (and showering, etc. afterwards) to be a good investment, in being more productive afterwards.
The best thing you can do is to stay engaged in your classes all semester so that when finals time comes, it's more like a review than a last-minute cram session.
I've been out of the school system for a while, but I have a job that sometimes requires late nights at work, or deadlines for presentations or reports. Still, I always make some time for training each week. It helps that a full-body 3x per week training schedule isn't that much of a time sink. If you need more time, you can cut out assistance and conditioning while keeping the push/pull/squat format intact.
5/3/1 with minimal assistance work. In and out of the gym in an hour or so.
Shit, some Summer time I'm going to be in school 30 hours a week. You bet your ass I'm going to find time to get stronger.
It's not always as easy as finding a couple hours each day. Humans aren't machines. In theory, spending 12hrs / day studying leaves 4hrs for going to the gym, but some people would be better served blowing off steam in other ways during finals week. It all comes down to your priorities. My classes always came first, so I took two weeks off from the gym around finals week. One less thing to think about.
One thing to be careful of is making sure you're using your time productively. You don't need to study 16hrs / day or even 8-10 hrs / day if that's what works for you, but if you're only studying 4hrs / day and drinking beer the rest of the day then you're just being lazy and should get in the gym.
Even in my most intense exam periods I can still put aside 1-2 hours every 2 days for training. I feel the physical work balances my mind and helps me stay alert and efficient during study. I'm an engineering student btw, not some arts scrubber.
in rare cases (like today/tomorrow), i will move a training day forward or skip ONE, but generally i have no problem juggling training, 30 hours of work, 15-18 credit hours, a social life, and sometimes a girl
i make good grades
i also work really well under pressure and have a photographic memory, so that probably helps with the studying side of things
my point isn't to brag, but to show you that it can be done.. especially if you don't have as much shit going on (i train 6 days a week)
If you are really strapped for time go 2x a week and do something like
Cleans 1x3 (also warms up for deads)
That should take next to no time and will keep some bare minimum adaptation going. The more time you have, the more sets you can add.