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CRUISE: Intro

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LETTING THE CEMENT SETTLE

As soon as the feast phase ends, you should immediately enter a cruise phase of about 2–3 weeks duration. During this time, your body is establishing a new homeostasis, getting used to all of that new muscle gained.

Important point: It is not yours until you establish this. Live with it, move around with it and let your body establish the greater blood volume and nutrient supply the added muscle needs to become permanent.

You also need to establish a nervous system (workout protocol) to talk to it. Calories should be dialed back to slightly above maintenance levels (around 10x bodyweight using a 40% carb, 30% protein and 30% fat starting point). There is no need for protein at more than 1 g per pound of body-weight in this phase. Active recovery methods should be emphasized such as sled dragging, medicine ball throws, etc.

Weight workouts should revert to more conventional fare with weights being used along the lines of no more than 80–85% of your 1 rep max. Recall you are training intensely during Feast. This is defined as using weights in the 90th percentile of your 1 rep max. Any time you use weights above 90% for more than 3 weeks at a time you risk your lifts going backwards. This is due to central nervous system inhibition and it’s a trap many fall into when chasing gains.

As a suggestion, Bill Starr’s classic 5 sets of 5 protocol fits the bill nicely here. So you’ll be transitioning to 5 sets of 5, going back to an upper body/lower body split and adding static holds for certain body parts.