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  1. #1
    Registered User VKH's Avatar
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    Newbie question: What happens if I eat maintenance calories and work out?

    I've been working out for a few months now. I've also been trying to eat well, avoiding all junk food, eating 6 times a day etc. But I don't really have a proper diet plan. I just basically eat to not be hungry anymore.

    Since I seem to not be gaining any weight or losing any, I was wondering what the effects of busting my ass off in the gym were. I keep hearing that you can't build muscles without eating a caloric surplus and you can't lose weight without a caloric deficit. So what happens when you eat maintenance level (with lots of protein) and work out like 6 times a week?
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  2. #2
    Loves Feeding Trolls Ironwake's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by VKH View Post
    I've been working out for a few months now. I've also been trying to eat well, avoiding all junk food, eating 6 times a day etc. But I don't really have a proper diet plan. I just basically eat to not be hungry anymore.

    Since I seem to not be gaining any weight or losing any, I was wondering what the effects of busting my ass off in the gym were. I keep hearing that you can't build muscles without eating a caloric surplus and you can't lose weight without a caloric deficit. So what happens when you eat maintenance level (with lots of protein) and work out like 6 times a week?
    You CAN do both of those things, just for general purposes it's not worth it. Eating at maintenance, you will slowly decrease body fat and slowly increase muscle mass. Emphasis on the slowly, look up "Recomp" diets.
    Starting Strength... Again! - http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=124491381

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  3. #3
    Equipment Geek Mod Wildtim's Avatar
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    Basically you will get strongr but stay the same weight.
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  4. #4
    Registered User TheResistance's Avatar
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    My weight has stayed the same for the last year (which means I was on average eating at maintenance).I have been losing fat whilst gaining muscle at a rate I have been happy with.
    Start Date Jan '09

    Bench 10RM --- Current 181lbs --- Goal 10 @BW
    WG Pull-ups --- Current 3 x 5 ---- Goal 3 x 10
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  5. #5
    Registered User brazucac89's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by VKH View Post
    I've been working out for a few months now. I've also been trying to eat well, avoiding all junk food, eating 6 times a day etc. But I don't really have a proper diet plan. I just basically eat to not be hungry anymore.

    Since I seem to not be gaining any weight or losing any, I was wondering what the effects of busting my ass off in the gym were. I keep hearing that you can't build muscles without eating a caloric surplus and you can't lose weight without a caloric deficit. So what happens when you eat maintenance level (with lots of protein) and work out like 6 times a week?
    If you start working out/ cardio and keep the same maintenance diet you have now you would enter a caloric deficit .. w/e the amount of calories burned in the gym were, thats how much of a deficit you would have, hence, body-fat loss. lifting weights on a caloric deficit will only benefit you in the keeping of your muscles, however, if you are just starting to weight train you should gain a considerable amount of muscles due to the new stress you are putting on your CNS. you should take advantage of this and eat on a surplus for a couple months.. also if you are starting out, i would not suggest the 6 times a week routine.. try a 3 day full body workout using strictly compound exercises, you will see your muscles growing by the rep GOOD LUCK!
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  6. #6
    Registered User dbjsds's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by VKH View Post
    I've been working out for a few months now. I've also been trying to eat well, avoiding all junk food, eating 6 times a day etc. But I don't really have a proper diet plan. I just basically eat to not be hungry anymore.

    Since I seem to not be gaining any weight or losing any, I was wondering what the effects of busting my ass off in the gym were. I keep hearing that you can't build muscles without eating a caloric surplus and you can't lose weight without a caloric deficit. So what happens when you eat maintenance level (with lots of protein) and work out like 6 times a week?
    dude im wanting to know the same question as you. what happens when you eat at maintenance and workout. thats what ive started doing. i think you can lose fat and build muscle at the same time doing this, but it'll just take longer to do. they say bulking then cutting is quicker, but to me its complicated to bulk. you have to eat a certain way everyday and it causes stress. if you eat at maintenance, all you have to do really is just eat healthy and workout, and over time build muscle and lose fat. i hope thats what will happen. thats what im doing.
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  7. #7
    Registered User SwiftyX's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by dbjsds View Post
    dude im wanting to know the same question as you. what happens when you eat at maintenance and workout. thats what ive started doing. i think you can lose fat and build muscle at the same time doing this, but it'll just take longer to do. they say bulking then cutting is quicker, but to me its complicated to bulk. you have to eat a certain way everyday and it causes stress. if you eat at maintenance, all you have to do really is just eat healthy and workout, and over time build muscle and lose fat. i hope thats what will happen. thats what im doing.
    Just eat healthy and workout but do it with 500 more calories a day. It's not as complicated as a lot of the people on this site would lead you to believe. You severly limit muscle gains and fat loss by recomping. It's really not a worthwhile endeavor until you are in advanced stages.
    "Worrying about GI is a waste of time & energy." - Alan Aragon.
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