I want to see if I can gain 5lbs of lean mass this winter without adding any fat. Right now I'm at 175lbs at 6.45% BF. I want to be at 180lbs and still under 7% by summer.
Over the past two years I have followed a very common training cycle of bulking in the fall and winter, then cutting in the spring so I could show off my hard work throughout the summer. Typically I would run my BF% up to 12-13% for seven months of the year, spend about two months cutting, and then hold it down to 7-8% for the swimsuit season.
In doing this, I added five pounds of lean mass each year. Nothing spectacular.
Last spring, I got a late start on my cut diet. Initially, I wasn't going to cut at all, but I just couldn't stand looking soft around the mid-section with my shirt off. I decided go low carb to cut a little more quickly. After ten weeks of having no more than 20 carbs a day, I was down to 6% BF...but it was a real chore to get there.
Late in the summer, I ran across two BB.com articles that intrigued me.
The first was titled, "Skip The Bulk and Stay Shredded All Year - A Simple Approach To Nutrition!" by Stuart Schaefer:
The article outlined how to eat just the right amount of food to grow muscle, but not gain excess fat.
The other was titled, "Arnold's #1 Get-Bigger Trigger: Power-Density Unlocks Faster Muscle Growth" by X-Rep.com:
This article outlines how to train using progressive pyramiding, followed by density chasers. According to the article, bodybuilders interested in maximum size should emphasize the 2A muscles, which are dual capacity - they have both a power and endurance component.
I have decided to train lean this year using the power-density approach to training. I will also be micro-loading my progressive pyramids. I'm going to journal about this and see how it goes.
I will follow up with specific information on the diet, workout, and supplement timing as well as measurement techniques.
Wish me luck.- Bo
Training journal progress photo (starting)