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  1. #1
    Registered User cljolley's Avatar
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    Little belly fat, but want to gain muscle

    Hey guys. I’m a 23 year old male. 142 pounds, 5’8” tall. A month ago I fell off the wagon with training and let my diet suffer. I was slow bulking and following the Allpro routine. I was training for a little over four months and had some good progress made to show for it. After I fell off the wagon I gained a fair bit of belly fat, some of which I had already, but wasn’t too concerned over. If I had to guess I would say I’m around 17-18% body fat but I have no actual idea. Anyhow I’m wondering if I should start back on my routine at a small caloric deficit and do a short cut, or if I should just keep focusing on slow bulking and putting on more muscle mass. Any input is greatly appreciated!

    To clarify, I’m not fat. I’m still quite skinny, I just have a small amount of belly fat that kind of rolls up a bit if I sit down or hunch over.
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  2. #2
    Registered User socksndtubes's Avatar
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    Based on your stats, you do need to bulk some more if your goal is to get bigger. 142 for 5'8 is very small, I think that's considered malnourished as far as BMI is concerned. That's the appropriate weight for guys 2 inches shorter than you. So you can bulk as much as you want, as long as you don't fall off the training wagon again. Hope this helps!
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    Verified Aesthetic rhadam's Avatar
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    If your goal is to gain muscle, then focus on gaining muscle. It's that simple.
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    Registered User cljolley's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by rhadam View Post
    If your goal is to gain muscle, then focus on gaining muscle. It's that simple.
    So rhadam, even though I’m a bit higher in BF percentage, can I still bulk rather leanly? I don’t really want to get a gut, but I do understand that I need a good base of muscle before actually going on a dedicated cut. Since I’m still technically a beginner could I eat at or just slightly above maintenance and depend on fat reserves ever so slightly to build muscle? For reference I was bulking at 2800 calories a day steadily gaining about .75 pounds a week average. I was using a rolling average to track my progress.

    Yes my general goal is to build muscle but I would like to avoid having to go on a long cut after I’ve gained 10-15 pounds of muscle. I want to look good. Not really going for the padded look lol.
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    Manlet GA1N5's Avatar
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    Gaining 0.75lb per week is a good lean bulk - keep doing it if you want to gain muscle with minimised fat gain.
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    Registered User cljolley's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by GA1N5 View Post
    Gaining 0.75lb per week is a good lean bulk - keep doing it if you want to gain muscle with minimised fat gain.
    Yes I am aware that is a good pace. What I’m concerned with though is that since I let my diet suffer this past month/fell off the wagon, I have gained subatantially more fat than I was while I was bulking. I’m worried that now I’ve primed my body to keep storing fat as I am now at an increased BF percentage. Does that make sense?
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    Train hard play harder Tommy W.'s Avatar
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    BF% can be misleading. If you have skinny arms and chest but hold the fat in your midsection it's usually better to add muscle then when you've added a decent amount go back and burn the fat off.
    If you don't get what you want you didn't want it bad enough
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    Registered User cljolley's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Tommy W. View Post
    BF% can be misleading. If you have skinny arms and chest but hold the fat in your midsection it's usually better to add muscle then when you've added a decent amount go back and burn the fat off.
    Fair enough. So I should just resume the bulking diet I was on previously? Should I slowly ramp up to that to avoid crashing my metabolism? I’ve been eating rather sparingly for the past week or so since I became concerned over my belly.
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    Registered User hardyboysare's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by cljolley View Post
    Fair enough. So I should just resume the bulking diet I was on previously? Should I slowly ramp up to that to avoid crashing my metabolism? I’ve been eating rather sparingly for the past week or so since I became concerned over my belly.
    You won't crash your metabolism it takes a lot to cause your metabolism to 'crash' (like starving and extremely low bf%). You can eat at maintenance for a week just to minimize water weight increases and get your appetite 'thermostat' back, but as its been only one week it would have done little to nothing to your body expect maybe a loss of a bit of water and glycogen if you have been eating less carbs.
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    Verified Aesthetic rhadam's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by cljolley View Post
    Fair enough. So I should just resume the bulking diet I was on previously? Should I slowly ramp up to that to avoid crashing my metabolism? I’ve been eating rather sparingly for the past week or so since I became concerned over my belly.
    Do you really think humans could have survived this long if the metabolism was so delicate?
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  11. #11
    Registered User Dolphins96's Avatar
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    Can someone help me with my bf percentage on what it is and what I can improve on to reach my goal. I am 207 6’1 22 years old. Thank you
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    Registered User cljolley's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by rhadam View Post
    Do you really think humans could have survived this long if the metabolism was so delicate?
    Well, I know that... I was not saying that would incite impending doom on myself. I was simply wondering if just jumping into it would cause any more excess fat gain. I was aware that it wouldn’t cause some catastrophic metabolic failure. I suppose “crash” was not an appropriate phrase to use in that instance. Anyhow that’s all I was wondering: What can I do to minimize further fat gain other than simply a more modest calorie surplus?
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  13. #13
    Train hard play harder Tommy W.'s Avatar
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    Originally Posted by cljolley View Post
    : What can I do to minimize further fat gain other than simply a more modest calorie surplus?
    That and make sure you're training properly. Poor training habits and a cal surplus will be just fat gain.
    If you don't get what you want you didn't want it bad enough
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  14. #14
    Registered User cljolley's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Tommy W. View Post
    That and make sure you're training properly. Poor training habits and a cal surplus will be just fat gain.
    Of course. Alright will do then. Thanks everyone!
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