Balancing Bodybuilding and a Physical Job

| by Truth Seeker |


One of the obstacles that stop people from engaging in bodybuilding activities is the required commitment. You have to go to the gym a few times a week, and your diet has to reflect your goals. How do you do that when you are working as a construction worker?

1.It’s going to be hard.

The body does not have an infinite ability to sustain physical stress. It’s a battery that can only do so much work before a recharge is needed. When your whole day is full of serious physical work, you are obviously not going to train as frequently as a teenager whose only responsibility is to be spoiled and stupid.

Combing physical work and training is hard because your recovery rate is irregular.

However, this does not mean that you shouldn’t train. You can still make progress but you have to pay attention and do some planning.

2.What’s your job? Where does it hurt?

There are many physical jobs ranging from a construction worker to a walking courier. It’s crucial to determine which parts of your body will be affected the most during your work.

Are you walking long distances? Or maybe you are using your arms more? The most used muscles and joints must be identified so that proper exercise selection can take place.

For example, if you are working a job that tires your shoulders and arms, you can schedule most of your upper body training in the beginning of the week.


Because the weekend provides some recovery for that body part. Therefore, you would be the strongest in the beginning of the week. If you were to do most of the work for that body part on Friday evening for example, you will probably feel weaker. This is not set in stone and varies from person to person.

3.Limit the workload and training volume.

The fastest way to overtrain is to do high volume. When you are already exploiting your body, the volume should be minimized to the lowest possible values that you can get away with. Obviously, routines like Smolov should be avoided like a salesman trying to sell you the next best thing.

It will take trial and error, but c’est la vie…

4.Be careful with your lower back.

The back is one of the most frequently injured body parts during physical work. For that reason pay special attention to your lower back.

If your work requires you to pick heavy objects, make sure that you do it with perfect form. The fact that the weight is light does not mean that you can’t get injured when you lift with bad form. It happens even to the best. Lee Priest, who is a bodybuilder known for his arm development, has torn a bicep lifting a TV. Don’t underestimate light weights.

5.Focus on the basics.

Don’t spend your money on useless stuff. Keep your focus sharp. Your routine should consist primarily of proven exercises. There’s no time for pointless T-Nation style workouts that promise to add a third ball to your nut sack in half a day. Leave that to the fools who have money to spend on garbage.

6.Do micro workouts when pressed for time.

Sometimes you won’t have time to go to the gym. This is when micro workouts may be useful. A ten minute workout is better than a zero minute workout. A lot can be done in ten minutes.

7.Take protein snacks when on duty.

Like a boss...

Like a boss…

Chances are that you are not going to eat in a restaurant during your lunch break if you are a construction worker. You are probably not even going to have a break. That’s why it’s recommended to take some protein snacks such as peanuts with you.

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One comment

  1. Tony

    I’m a block / brick mason as well as a bodybuilder I can tell you first hand that you must take in carbs like oatmeal first thing before driving to work. Pack a banana and your mass gainer shake along with your left overs from last night. Eat your banana after getting to the job site, lunch time eat your food you packed. When it’s time to leave drink that shake. I always have a gallon of water with me at work. I get home and I lay down for an hour, I get up, eat, take my supplements and proceed to go to the gym. I do a split schedule work out. I lift heavy and I’m in and out. Less than 30 minutes after I have another mass gainer and I’m already eating. Stretch before bed and get back up and do it again.

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