As a small business owner you don’t have the luxury of taking sick days.
Any of you who own a small business know this right?

As I sit at my desk and write this, I am back in the office after taking two days off sick, and should have stayed home today.


I came in because the work isn’t going to do itself.

I’ve gotten TPS to a place where the business will run without me for the most part and that is pretty cool, but I still have work that is my job specifically.

Sick Days and Being Stupid

It's running by itself. New video being shot for our next project. Without me!


That’s why I came in today.

400 emails to reply to, TPS Advanced membership programs to get delivered, preparation for the big meet this weekend and a few more things must be done today.
Oh, and a coaching log.

Today’s log is on training when you are sick.

It may seem like a simple answer, and years ago, my answer was suck it up and don’t skip training sessions.
Notice I didn’t say “workouts”?
If you read this log and this site, you don’t “workout”, you train.

So how do you know if you should take a day off from training or if you should suck it up and get in the gym?

This is not an easy answer.

I go by the rule of thumb, and I am not a doctor, of if the cold is above the neck, train.
If it’s below the neck skip it.
What that means is that if you have a head cold you can probably go in the gym and get your main lifts done and some accessory work. A head cold isn’t that big of a deal, unless you are a guy, and then it may be the end of the world.
Guys are babies when they are sick as most women know.

If the “cold” is below the neck, meaning you have aches, pains, exploding anus, fever and flu like symptoms you are better off taking a day or more off.


Sick Days and Being Stupid

You'll need these for Exploding Anus Syndrome, or a live sheep.

You’ll set yourself back further if you try and come in the gym and push through.
This is a bitter pill to swallow if you have a meet or a test day coming up soon. You must swallow it.

Training with flu like symptoms will 99% of the time prolong the illness and keep you out of the gym longer.

Run away, live to fight another day.

You know how you are run down, and exhausted when you have a below the neck illness?
That’s your body telling you to go to bed and sleep it off.
At the least, plant your ass on the couch and watch t.v. under a blanky for the day.

Personally, I like to let the fever run its course and I don’t take anything to lower it during the day, unless it is raging at 104 and life threatening. The fever is your body’s way of fighting the illness.
This is not medical advice and might be stupid, but it’s what I do.
Take some Nyquil at bedtime and go to sleep much earlier than usual too.

Now, what about getting back into training?
This depends on how sick you were and what is upcoming.

If you missed a few sessions and you are in a block that is not meet prep, I suggest picking up where you left off. Just start right back up and maybe drop the intensity a little if needed.
It will push your training block out a week or so but that is ok. If you have a coach, ask them what to do.

What if you got sick a few weeks from a meet?
This is where it gets tougher.
Every case is individual.

If it’s a big meet where there is something at stake, like qualifying for Nationals, or even competing at Nationals, you’ll need to make a decision on what needs to be done. If you have a coach, defer to them.
If you don’t, think about how far out you are and how will jumping right back in affect your performance?
This is a huge deal when you are at the end of the cycle.

We like to have people take their heaviest lifts before a meet roughly 3 weeks out. If you miss this week of training, you’ll need to review the rest of the program and adjust it so you are not lifting too heavy too close to the meet.

If you lift too heavy too close, you will affect recovery and possibly hinder your performance.

If you miss the heavy days at the end of the cycle, you can also risk under-performing at the meet too.
It’s a tricky situation.

Personally, if it was one of my lifters, and it was a big meet, I’d say to follow the program as written and go by the weeks as they were laid out; meaning if you miss the heavy week you missed it.
I’d much rather have them recovered and fresh on meet day, than having them get on the platform with a fried nervous system.

What if your meet is just a local meet (beginner), or a tune-up meet?
Maybe we can take the heavy week but skip the deadlift.
Just bench and squat as planned a week later.

Cut the volume on the accessory work in half too.


This is not ideal programing, but getting sick wasn’t planned either.

Last week I said I’d have something good for you this week, like Why the Agility Ladder Sucks, but getting sick threw me off my game for the week.
Next week, I’ll have some more tips for sure.

Now, I have to go home and sleep. I’ve got a busy weekend coming up.

We have a TON of lifters competing at the RPS New Hampshire/Vermont State Championships.
I’ve got to be on my “A” game.

Ask me a question-Be sure and Type to Murph in the header

Find me on Google-search for Total Performance Sports Malden, Mass. The Best Gym in Boston, Facebook too.

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Vincere vel mori