Cart 0

Cutting Workouts Short – Prioritize Missed Section and Make-Up Options

Stew smith

What To Do When You Miss All
or Some of Your Workout

Often, life can get in the way of our best-made plans and affect things we want to do with our full efforts. When you run out of time and miss sections of your workout due to such occurrences, some rules can help you focus on what you need or find ways to make up for what you missed later. Here are some general guidelines to stay focused when everything else is working against you:

- Learn how to prioritize and make up missed workouts, even when time and facilities are against you.
- Discover the crucial components of your training plan and how to make them your top priority.
- Find creative ways to make up for missed workouts and stay on track with your goals.

Here is the order of importance for you when having to miss or move workout sections to a later time:

1 – Your Weakness – Focusing on your weaknesses is a crucial priority. When you doubt completing a workout, ensure you do not miss an opportunity to focus on your weakness entirely. This will be different from one person to the next, but if that means getting to the pool earlier and postponing the weight room or running section of your workout day, get the swimming and pool skills done if that is your weakness. The same goes for other events on the schedule that day, and they all depend on your weaknesses. Your weaknesses will be exposed on day 1 of any future tactical training, so the goal now is to make any weakness less of a weakness – priority 1.

2 – Facility Hours – Sometimes, pools, weight room, and equipment are not available when you are making time to get them done. In that case, you may have to be more flexible and work out earlier or later. Look to squeeze in a separate session during lunch or after school/work, depending on your schedule and the facilities you use. Having an option available to replace any facility issue should also be considered, whether that means accumulating some equipment of your own (weights, weight vests, other), running in place of swimming, or doing calisthenics instead of lifting. It would be best always to have a plan B for training as relying on other organizations can often cause disappointment.

3 – Replacement Ratios – As mentioned above, if the pool is closed and you cannot find a safe open water option, replace any swim time with the following ratio: every 500m of swimming equals a mile of running or 10 minutes of non-impact cardio (bike, rowing, elliptical). You may have to get creative, like during COVID, when pools and gyms were closed, and rely on yourself. Any swimming with fins can be replaced with stairs, bleacher runs, hill runs, or rucking on the same ratio of 500m = 10 minutes or a mile of activity. There is a great saying used by the Army Rangers (and other small military units), “The best support is your own support.”

4 – Bump It to the Right - First and foremost, it's important to remember that missing a workout here and there is not the end of the world. I like to have a floating “day off” in my week. My day off is normally on Sunday, when the week works well. But, sometimes, things need to get bumped to the right and done the next day. Life happens, and sometimes our schedules don't allow a full gym session. However, it's crucial not to let those missed workouts derail your progress. Instead, prioritize the missed session and plan to make it up.

When prioritizing missed workouts, look at your training schedule and determine which workouts are non-negotiable weakness-focused. This could mean doing a quick bodyweight workout in your living room, running outside, or even incorporating high-intensity interval training into your day. Something is better than nothing. If stressed out, do a Mobility Day in its place and bump the missed workout to the right.

Additionally, consider doubling up on workouts during your next training session. If you missed a strength workout earlier in the week, add some extra sets or reps to your next strength training session to make up for it. Just be sure to listen to your body and avoid overtraining. Same for a swim or run workout, add some laps or interval sets to the next day.

Keep pushing forward, stay focused, and don't let missed workouts discourage you. With the right mindset and a solid plan, you can continue on the path to reaching your goals, no matter what obstacles may come your way.

There is More To than You May Know

(In fact, there are more than 40 books, 1000+ articles, online coaching - and more) 

Who is Stew Smith CSCS? Coach, Trainer, Writer, PodcasterI'm the former Navy SEAL that tactical candidates go to for books, ebooks and online coaching to prepare themselves to get to and through intense tactical assessment and selection programs and qualify for service in their chosen tactical profession.  See More at

Where to Find More Information About Optimal Performance Training Programs

When you start training again, consider the seasonal tactical fitness model.  I call it A WAY to train and obviously not the only way to train. But it offers the opportunity to never neglect your weaknesses, helps with flexibility and mobility, but will also put you at a level of physical abilities where you are happy with your overall ability to do just about anything. We have a system where the seasons dictate our training. When it is nicer outside, we tend to run and do more calisthenics. When it is colder and not so nice, we lift more, run less, and still maintain our outdoor activities with shorter runs and rucks. Check it out: Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization System.  

These Seasonal Tactical Fitness BLOCK Periodization programs will walk you through 4 x 4 weeks cycles with 16 weeks of each season in two programs. (32 total weeks)

Increase Strength & Crush the PST / PAST
3 Weeks Strength - 1 Week PT / Cardio Focus 
(16 weeks)

These programs will walk you through 4 cycles with 12 weeks of each season in two programs. 

The Specific Military / Special Ops Physical Fitness Workouts 

Navy SEAL Workout Phase 1
Navy SEAL Workout Phase 2 - 3
Navy SEAL Workout Phase 4  Grinder PT
Navy SWCC Workout

Army / Air Force Advanced Fitness / Special Ops 

Army PFT Workout (Prep For Rucking, OPAT, ACFT)
Army Special Forces / Ranger Workout
Army Air Assault School Workout
Army Airborne Workout
Air Force Special Warfare IFT / OFT / Selection Prep


Advanced Running Program - Special Ops Supplement Plan
USMC OCS / TBS Workout


The Combat Conditioning Workout
Air Force PJ / CCT Workout  Battlefield Airman Prep Course
The UBRR Upper Body Round Robin Workout / Spec Ops version


The Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer / Navy SAR Workout
The Service Academy Workout (West Point, Navy, Air Force Academy)
The Navy, Air Force, Marine Corp Boot Camp Workout


The Law Enforcement Physical Fitness Workouts

The FBI Academy Workout  |   FBI Workout Vol 2  
The DEA Workout
The FLETC Workout - Ace the PEB
The PFT Bible: Pushups, Sit-ups, 1.5 Mile Run
The Fire Fighter Workout - Ace the CPAT


Online Coaching Options

Online PT CLUB - Weekly Workouts created personally for you.

New Member's Only Content / Services Program!

If you want access to years worth of workouts, many of the top eBOOKs, favorite workouts of the week, free fitness APP, closed Facebook Group, video / picture library of exercises, and more access to LIVE Q/A sessions check out the Stew Smith Fitness Members Section

The dashboard below has the links to all the information, archives, videos, and links to workouts, podcasts, live Q and A lessons. 

Consider this! - A Membership Program and Gain Access to Exclusive Content
(click for Fitness Club Dashboard - members only)

Best of all, if you have questions, email Stew Smith himself (  Join the tactical fitness group discussions, latest articles, videos, podcasts at the Stew Smith Tactical Fitness Training Closed Group on Facebook.


Questions?  Just email -

At - List of Products and Services

  1. FREE Articles
  2. Podcasts and Swimming Videos (Youtube, TikTok, Instagram)
  3. eBooks
  4. Books and eBooks in PRINT
  5. Stew Smith Fitness Club membership site
  6. Online Coaching  

Stew Smith Fitness 

    Older Post Newer Post

    Leave a comment

    Please note, comments must be approved before they are published