T Nation

Preserving Muscle/Strength During Layoff

So I’m going to be taking about a month off of training this January, spending the month abroad in India traveling. I’ve been in and out of the gym for years, but only seriously training for around 6 months now. I’m currently coming to the end of a run through of Madcow’s 5x5 and am stronger and bigger than I’ve ever been. As I’ll have another month before I leave, I’m thinking perhaps I can do one cycle of 5/3/1 before I leave.

I’m concerned with the best way to preserve my strength and muscle mass during this month. I know I won’t be able to train at all and I know my diet and sleep habits will be sub-optimal at best. Mostly I was hoping some of you who have been at this longer than I have might have some advice about ways to minimize these losses, since losses are certainly inevitable. Perhaps I’ll be able to do some BW work, but other than that who knows. I hate to use supplements as a crutch, but if there’s something that could really help with this I’d be all over it. I know I’ve heard that BCAA’s can help to minimize these effects. Any personal experiences with this? Other recommendations?

Thanks in advance. I’m pretty new to Tmuscle (wasted a lot of time on another site…oops), but I’m loving these forums and learning a lot.


i went traveling for 7 months, eating and training will suffer no way round it. but if you ask and look you will find some gyms, ive trained in some really random places, multi story carparks, peoples back gardens etc, ask at the hostels/hotels you stay at. one time the guy on reception took me on his tuk-tuk to a real spit and saw dust gym in the back of beyond. great stuff! food will be cheap in india, just pray you dont get the sh.ts. a months not that bad.