How many of you are scared of losing muscle mass during long periods of vacation time? I bet most of us would agree that we have some fear of losing muscle mass if we somehow can't make it to the gym. This is true, but only over long periods of doing absolutely nothing. The truth is, every once and awhile, it is important to take a well deserved break from lifting weights to avoid overtraining.
Overtraining is the term used to describe the physical degradation process over very long periods of intense training. It is pretty easy to overtrain if you are scared of missing a single day of working out. Like I said before, it is important to take a little break about 1 week every 8-10 weeks of training. You will come back stronger and more enthusiastic to train.
A little break every once in a while is not a couple months unless you have sustained a shoulder injury or something of that nature. If that happens to you, then well, you are going to have to find another way to stay in shape. Ironically, many shoulder injuries are caused by overtraining of the joint and it will force you to take a break, but a much longer than necessary one. So be kind to your body!
If that break happens to be a couple of months, then I would consider that a vacation. Usually during the first week of a vacation it is okay to lay back and relax, but as soon as the two week mark starts, you better find a way to train, otherwise your body will start to realize that it has no use for unnecessary muscle. Granted, with a proper diet, you can hold on to most of your muscle mass.
Before beginning your training, you are going to have to figure out the resources that are available. From there, you can formulate a great workout based on what you have. You can even take with you a couple of resistance bands while on vacation. Resistance bands, if providing enough resistance, can be great for getting a in a day's workout. You can workout almost every bodypart with these and I would highly recommend them. If you do not have these resistance bands, then that is perfectly fine.
The most common approach taken by people on vacation is calisthenics. These are exercises using the body's weight as resistance. This can include push ups, pull ups, dips, squats, lunges, and many other creative exercises you can think of on your own. I wouldn't advise anything too crazy though. Some of these exercises can be done with resistance using rocks or something of that nature. If you do not have anything to work with as far as added resistance goes, then you can do as many reps as possible until failure for a couple of sets on each exercise.
These exercises can be done everyday with a well balanced diet. Even protein is important during these kinds of exercises so as to promote muscle growth and maintenance. Muscle growth will usually only occur if you increase the intensity each day. This means maybe one or two more reps but that can mean a big difference by the time you get back home and hit the weights once again. There are many people who feel that after doing calisthenics on vacation, they come back much stronger. This is slightly true in that doing higher reps trains different muscle fibers than what you would have been training with lower reps and higher resistance. The best way to train is with a balance between the two, but in this case while on vacation you do not have much choice.
This is just fine though for muscle maintenance. If you do these workouts with enough intensity and do them everyday along with a well balanced diet, then you will be able to maintain all of your hard work in the gym. Have a great vacation!
06-18-2009, 04:31 PM #1
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How to maintain muscle mass away from the gym!
06-30-2009, 03:10 AM #2
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Some good ideas! I've just booked a 2 week holiday for summer and this just confirms what i suspected.
The hotel/resort in Rhodes doesnt have a gym, just tennis. Going to be doing lots of walks and some calisthenics.
I'm taking my girlfriend with me and she can lie on my back for (a small amount of) extra weight for push ups! haha
06-30-2009, 07:09 AM #3
Everytime I've been on holiday for about 2 weeks its not bothered me at all.
I know a lot of people worry about it. I've always just seen it as a break from the gym and a chance for my body to recover.
After that if you lose some muscle mass then its easy to build it back up again because of muscle memory anyway.
06-30-2009, 07:23 AM #4
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I'm going to be gone for 2 weeks soon so this just reminded me of ideas! I do allot of cals to begin with but normally compliment it with weights lifting and cardio work. A break does help Ive noticed, I took a week off and came back totally refreshed and new not to mention I was surprised at how much stronger I had gotten (Increased more weight on the bench and felt like nothing!). But I might consider throwing the old perfect pushup in the bag for good messure....Idk rocks for weights seam like a great idea though never thought of that...
06-30-2009, 01:41 PM #5
08-06-2009, 03:20 PM #6
try this out,
i had 2 weeks in florida, hotel gym had rubbish light weights, worked out a few days there and caught swine flu, saw had it total 3-4 weeks out from training lost nearly a stone in weight thur illness and nearly inch off arm, missed lots of meals, started back at gym this week, legs strength dropped, chest gone up, shoulders gone up, arms gone down, back dropped a lot.
so i am very upset.
08-06-2009, 06:14 PM #7
If you are going on a vacation for a week or less, then you really don't need to worry about anything... Just use it as a break for your body to recover and then hit the gym hard when you get home again.
If you are going on a vacation for an extended period of time then some bodyweight exercises would be beneficial to help maintain muscle mass
08-07-2009, 06:00 PM #8
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I would say
- do swimming or bodyweight exercises 3 times a week
- make sure you get enough protein
- dont stress out & enjoy yourself* S&P crew *
* AGJ escapees crew *
* ʍǝɹɔ ǝıssnɐ *
08-08-2009, 06:15 AM #9
08-29-2009, 03:51 AM #10
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08-29-2009, 05:54 AM #11
09-11-2009, 12:33 AM #12
yea it was weird i got sent away for work for a month lost about a half inch on my arms.... and an inch on my chest... hit the gym occasionally that they had were i was sent and when i got back i put on about 3/4 of an inch on my arms and about an 1.5 inches on my chest in about 2 weeks.... and gained about 5-7 pounds in that 2 weeks but prior to being sent away i was training pretty hard and was eating pretty good....
09-28-2009, 01:02 AM #13
01-24-2010, 04:25 PM #14
01-27-2010, 04:02 AM #15
02-01-2015, 07:12 PM #16
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