Q. I'm going on a week-long vacation. What's the best way for me to train beforehand?

Everybody needs a vacation now and then. But how many times have you gone on a long vacation, only to find that the workout space resembles The Professor's makeshift gym on Gilligan's Island? You can skip training altogether, but a lost week may not do much to enhance your ripped physique.



For me, a little "overtraining" right before I go on vacation has worked really well. I train hard 6-or-7 days in a row before packing my bags. After all that muscle destruction, my body will be screaming for some days off. I use my vacation to give my body that rest. I don't touch a weight while I'm on vacation — I let myself completely recover. On the beach watching sunsets and hardbodies, if all goes according to plan.

Yes, even The Ripped Dude takes a holiday from the shred.

After a week of hard training and a week of rest, my body is ready to get back into the gym. Most of the time, I don't even feel like I've taken a week off! I feel as strong as ever, if not stronger.

Using your vacation time to rest up from a week of overtraining does not mean that you should eat like a Hungry Hungry Hippo. Keep your diet relatively clean so you don't come back rotund, courtesy of salt, sugar and adult beverages.

If you have a vacation planned, and want to plan your training around it, try this overtraining technique. Here is the routine I use for my vacation preparation:

Monday: Chest/Abs
1
Superset
Barbell Bench Press - Medium Grip
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Sit-Up
4 sets, 25-30 reps
2
Superset
Incline Dumbbell Press
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Flat Bench Lying Leg Raise
4 sets, 25-30 reps
3
Superset
Cable Crossover
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Russian Twist
4 sets, 25-30 reps
4
Dumbbell Flyes
4 sets, 10-12 reps
5
Decline Push-Up
4 sets, 20-25 reps
6
Running, Treadmill
1 set, 30 mins
Tuesday: Biceps/Triceps
1
Superset
Preacher Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Dips - Triceps Version
4 sets, 10-12 reps
2
Superset
Barbell Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Lying Triceps Press
4 sets, 10-12 reps
3
Superset
Standing Biceps Cable Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Tricep Dumbbell Kickback
4 sets, 10-12 reps
4
Superset
Seated Biceps Hammer Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Triceps Pushdown
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Wednesday: Legs/Abs
1
Barbell Squat
4 sets, 10-12 reps
2
Leg Press
4 sets, 10-12 reps
3
Superset
Dumbbell Lunges
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Cable Crunch
4 sets, 25-30 reps
4
Superset
Lying Leg Curls
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Flutter Kicks
4 sets, 25-30 reps
5
Superset
Seated Leg Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Crunches
4 sets, 25-30 reps
6
Seated Calf Raise
4 sets, 10-12 reps
7
Standing Calf Raises
4 sets, 10-12 reps
8
Calf Press On The Leg Press Machine
4 sets, 10-12 reps
9
Running, Treadmill
or other form of cardio
1 set, 30 mins
Thursday: Shoulders/Back
1
Superset
Barbell Shrug
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Pullups
4 sets, 10-12 reps
2
Superset
Standing Dumbbell Upright Row
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Bent Over Barbell Row
4 sets, 10-12 reps
3
Superset
Dumbbell Shoulder Press
4 sets, 10-12 reps
T-Bar Row
4 sets, 10-12 reps
4
Superset
Front Dumbbell Raise
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Friday: Chest/Abs
1
Dumbbell Bench Press
4 sets, 10-12 reps
2
Superset
Barbell Incline Bench Press Medium-Grip
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Sit-Up
4 sets, 25-30 reps
3
Superset
Butterfly
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Plank
4 sets, 10-12 reps
4
Superset
Decline Dumbbell Bench Press
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Air Bike
4 sets, 25-30 reps
5
Pushups
4 sets, 25-30 reps
6
Running, Treadmill
or on an outdoor track.
1 set, 30 mins (sprint straight, jog turns)
Saturday: Biceps/Triceps
1
Superset
Dumbbell Bicep Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position
4 sets, 10-12 reps
2
Superset
Cable Hammer Curls - Rope Attachment
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Dumbbell One-Arm Triceps Extension
4 sets, 10-12 reps
3
Superset
Two-Arm Dumbbell Preacher Curl
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Standing Overhead Barbell Triceps Extension
4 sets, 10-12 reps
4
Running, Treadmill
1 set, 30 mins
Sunday: Legs/Abs
1
Barbell Deadlift
4 sets, 10-12 reps
2
Superset
Hack Squat
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Cable Crunch
4 sets, 20-25 reps
3
Superset
Donkey Calf Raises
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Flat Bench Leg Pull-In
4 sets, 20-25 reps
4
Superset
Bodyweight Walking Lunge
4 sets, 10-12 reps
Flat Bench Lying Leg Raise
4 sets, 20-25 reps
5
Running, Treadmill
Interval Sprints on treadmill or track.
10 sets, 100 m (at 50-60%, rest is walking back to starting line)

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