Keeping Your Muscle Gains On Vacation Don't be afraid to travel.

Losing muscle mass is one of the biggest fears inhabiting the craniums of bodybuilding maniacs. To prevent this heartbreaking scenario, bodybuilders do all kinds of stunts. In this post, l will present you techniques used to avoid muscle evaporation when traveling. I hope that the tips below will reduce the pressure in your head.

In this post, l will present you techniques used to avoid muscle evaporation when traveling. I hope that the tips below will reduce the pressure in your head.

What exercises should I do on vacation?

When pressed for time and training equipment, bodyweight exercises are your best friend. Pull-ups, dips, planks, and push-ups will preserve the muscle mass of your upper body. Of course, if your hotel has a gym, you should use it. However, many hotel gyms are poorly equipped and/or very expensive.


If there is absolutely no gym equipment or monkey bars nearby, you can stick to push-ups, planks, and rows. The push-ups will take care of your pushing muscles {chest, triceps, front deltoids} whereas the rows and the planks will hit the back and the core. Additionally, you can use your travel luggage as a dumbbell and do one arm rows with it.

Note: You can do horizontal rows with the help of a stable table as shown in the video below:

For the lower body, you can do jump squats, pistols, Bulgarian splits squats or sprints. The chances of finding a good place to perform barbell squats are slim and looking for it may take away from your vacation time. The mentioned exercises will help you maintain your muscle mass and strength to some degree.

Note: A common problem with leg training on vacation is that the lower body is often tired from all the walking. That’s why you may have to skip all leg work, and especially exercises stressing the calves.

Remember – you are maintaining, not building!

On vacation, your goal is to maintain, not to build. When traveling, you have to deal with bad food, sleep deprivation, extra stress and poor training conditions. You can’t expect to make your best gains in similar conditions.

Don’t panic!

Many people overestimate the negative effect of breaks on muscle mass and strength. Unless you are traveling for months, you won’t lose anything. For example, if your trip is only a week, you can skip training altogether.

A cool way to flip the tables on your side is to increase your training prior to the vacation. The goal is to overtrain and use the vacation week as a recovery/deload.

If you travel for months, however, you will suffer more significant losses. There is no way to maintain 100% of your strength when you are not doing the proper exercises. Working out any way you can is your only option. On the bright side, you have a chance to become a bodyweight master.

Nutrition Could Be an Even Bigger Problem

Following your nutritional strategy on vacation is many times harder than when you are home.

Be prepared to face the following challenges:

  1. Inability to prepare “bodybuilding” meals due to the lack of time.
  2. Expensive food.
  3. Strong internal and external pressure to taste the local cuisine which more often than not will be “anti-gains”.

Additional notes:

Sources of protein. Tuna cans be a good source of protein when you are traveling They can be transported “safely” and contain a lot of protein. Another option would be nuts and peanuts. They are high in calories and protein. Nonetheless, eating similar foods in large quantities could result in discomfort.

A little junk won’t kill you. Sometimes you have to mute the bodybuilding autist in you. There is no point in avoiding all delicious meals when you are on vacation.

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