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    Non-linear weight gain with consistent energy input/output.

    Hey there nutrition section.

    Just a friendly inquiry out of curiosity, as I'm wondering if anyone else experiences this when they are in a weight-gaining phase and, in the past, my weight gain was more predictable/linear than it has been.

    Basically, both energy intake and output (training, lifestyle, etc) has been unchanged for the last 3.5 months. In this time, my total weight gain has been close to 'ideal' in terms of what most consider a 'lean bulk', as I am up about 6.5lb now. I am getting stronger, albeit slowly, and I am noticeably more full and thick.

    Oddly enough, visually I see almost no accumulated fat gain, but definitely some water retention which in my many years I have been fairly good at distinguishing from actual fat.

    The odd thing, though, is that my gains on the scale have been quite random. I will go about 2-3 weeks gaining almost nothing, and then within the span of a week (with no changes to the aforementioned variables) I will gain something like 2 pounds, and then hover there until another 'spike'.

    One consideration is that I am coming from an underweight state, so I have suspected some fluid shifts to happen moreso in my case than people who are not or were not as lean, but I'm curious if others experience this as well.

    My weight gain has looked something like:

    Weeks 1-2: 1lb gain
    Week 3: no net gain
    Week 4: 1.5lb net gain
    Week 5: no net gain
    Week 6: .5 net gain
    Week 7: no net gain
    Week 8: 2-3lb net gain
    Week 9: .5 net gain

    This is what the actual data graphed for avg weight gain looks like:



    Anywho, just wondering if others have experienced anything similar. Given my net gain has been good in an overall sense I don't plan on adjusting, but the weekly changes (measured via (7-day moving average) have been very odd.

    It's confusing to weigh myself one day, and then 6 days later I am consistently 2-3lbs heavier despite making no changes.
    Last edited by AdamWW; 07-13-2019 at 10:41 AM.
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    This is actually almost exactly what is happening to me right now. Everything is pretty constant, including sodium etc.

    I’ve been bulking since December and I’m pretty confident by now of my surplus in the range of a lean bulk. I’ve actually stopped using my weekly average and started using a week on the scale, take that average, take a week off the scale, then another week on the scale and take that average just to make sure I’m still on the right track. I started doing this just so these random shifts wouldn’t mess with my head, which would most likely mess with my diet, which like I said I’m pretty confident in by now. As long I’m getting stronger and like the way I look, I’m just gonna keep this strategy going.

    I don’t have an answer for you, as we’re both pretty lean and could be going through the same physiological thing. I know you’re probably not worried about it but if you were I wouldn’t be.
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    Originally Posted by Nicksosure1 View Post
    This is actually almost exactly what is happening to me right now. Everything is pretty constant, including sodium etc.

    I’ve been bulking since December and I’m pretty confident by now of my surplus in the range of a lean bulk. I’ve actually stopped using my weekly average and started using a week on the scale, take that average, take a week off the scale, then another week on the scale and take that average just to make sure I’m still on the right track. I started doing this just so these random shifts wouldn’t mess with my head, which would most likely mess with my diet, which like I said I’m pretty confident in by now. As long I’m getting stronger and like the way I look, I’m just gonna keep this strategy going.

    I don’t have an answer for you, as we’re both pretty lean and could be going through the same physiological thing. I know you’re probably not worried about it but if you were I wouldn’t be.
    Oh no, zero worries, it's just a weird thing that I didn't deal with before. I'm gaining, so i'm happy
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    First of all, great progress man! You seem to have nailed it in terms of averages.

    I have experienced lots of weight fluctuations at very lean figures (sub-levels), still do but at a lesser scale. Waterweight seems to be the biggest factor in this. The biggest swings were up to 8lbs or around, on a day to day basis... so lots of mind**** there.

    Are you mainly carb driven or is it just a mixed flurry of food? I know you're 'intuitive' so it might be hard to give a specific answer.
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    Originally Posted by Tucane View Post
    First of all, great progress man! You seem to have nailed it in terms of averages.

    I have experienced lots of weight fluctuations at very lean figures (sub-levels), still do but at a lesser scale. Waterweight seems to be the biggest factor in this. The biggest swings were up to 8lbs or around, on a day to day basis... so lots of mind**** there.

    Are you mainly carb driven or is it just a mixed flurry of food? I know you're 'intuitive' so it might be hard to give a specific answer.
    Im definitely higher on carbs for sure, and yeah i don't track religiously but I definitely know my averages just based on over a decade of meticulous tracking.

    My fats seem to land likely between 60 and 80 grams, and my carbs tend to land around 350-400 on average but that depends HIGHLY on activity. One days when I go golfing, for example, I might eat like 500+ grams of carbs. Protein is really the only thing I target which is usually around 150g or so.

    but given my progress so far... It honestly feels like mostly water... I mean I started this at a legit 5-6%
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Oh no, zero worries, it's just a weird thing that I didn't deal with before. I'm gaining, so i'm happy
    Didn’t think so and happy to hear it.

    The worst thing with water weight is having loose skin that it sometimes loves to take habitat in. It can reallllllllly **** with your head. I’ve had to learn to get over a lot of things the past few months lol
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    Originally Posted by Nicksosure1 View Post
    Didn’t think so and happy to hear it.

    The worst thing with water weight is having loose skin that it sometimes loves to take habitat in. It can reallllllllly **** with your head. I’ve had to learn to get over a lot of things the past few months lol
    Oh true that. Even when at my leanest/thinnest/sickest, I could stretch that stuff out like crazy





    compared to now... just 11 weeks later, but up about 7 pounds.


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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Im definitely higher on carbs for sure, and yeah i don't track religiously but I definitely know my averages just based on over a decade of meticulous tracking.

    My fats seem to land likely between 60 and 80 grams, and my carbs tend to land around 350-400 on average but that depends HIGHLY on activity. One days when I go golfing, for example, I might eat like 500+ grams of carbs. Protein is really the only thing I target which is usually around 150g or so.

    but given my progress so far... It honestly feels like mostly water... I mean I started this at a legit 5-6%
    Yeah long-time habits tend to leave that kind of subconcious numeric knowledge.

    I'd guess your nutrient partioning is improved from the higher carb style of eating... I am carb driven aswell and I've noticed only waterweight gain when bulking over the years, unless i push above 100g fats or so at an actual consistent surplus... then I gain would gain fat aswell.

    How did it feel like mentally/physically being 5%BF? I haven't been lower than 6%BF ever, but I still remember the sickly but fascinating feeling of being "close to death".
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    Originally Posted by Tucane View Post
    Yeah long-time habits tend to leave that kind of subconcious numeric knowledge.

    I'd guess your nutrient partioning is improved from the higher carb style of eating... I am carb driven aswell and I've noticed only waterweight gain when bulking over the years, unless i push above 100g fats or so at an actual consistent surplus... then I gain would gain fat aswell.

    How did it feel like mentally/physically being 5%BF? I haven't been lower than 6%BF ever, but I still remember the sickly but fascinating feeling of being "close to death".
    My mindset was terrible and it was genuine eating disorder, which I am still recovering from, but I am the heaviest I have been in 2 years now and there is no turning back.

    I felt like death, but at the same time my mental focus was so lasered in on being lean and tracking and maintaining this identity I had kept for so long, that the addiction often masked the negative feelings to some degree. I was so filled with stress hormone that it gave me energy, and that energy kept that mental disease going constantly.

    So yeah, it's a really weird feeling to be sure... on the one hand you KNOW it's horrible and you feel awful, but at the same time there is a weird, masochistic euphoria knowing you have accomplished something so rare and extreme... it's a painful cycle.

    In terms of nutrients I just don't crave fatty foods... at least not to the degree some people do... closest thing would be stuff like PB and Banana sandwiches.. but my cravings are usually more things like cereal, pastries, or sandwiches with super dense bread, etc. I also have a weird love of fig newtons
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    My mindset was terrible and it was genuine eating disorder, which I am still recovering from, but I am the heaviest I have been in 2 years now and there is no turning back.

    I felt like death, but at the same time my mental focus was so lasered in on being lean and tracking and maintaining this identity I had kept for so long, that the addiction often masked the negative feelings to some degree. I was so filled with stress hormone that it gave me energy, and that energy kept that mental disease going constantly.

    So yeah, it's a really weird feeling to be sure... on the one hand you KNOW it's horrible and you feel awful, but at the same time there is a weird, masochistic euphoria knowing you have accomplished something so rare and extreme... it's a painful cycle.

    In terms of nutrients I just don't crave fatty foods... at least not to the degree some people do... closest thing would be stuff like PB and Banana sandwiches.. but my cravings are usually more things like cereal, pastries, or sandwiches with super dense bread, etc. I also have a weird love of fig newtons
    Stress hormone was through the roof for me aswell, I remember it like a kind of "high" that kept me going... In my case, the rigorous schedule (2x lifting/day, + walking with a weighted backback) and the low calories made it end abruptly after a few of months. Lethargy hit like a sledgehammer and I couldn't even do a pullup in the end with max effort, also constant pain, cried and had hallucinations in the evenings and well I had no choice but to recover.

    So I just ate whatever i could get my hands on and quit lifting. I think this chain of events saved me from long-term agony. ED for shorter term likelt, but I didn't recall any anxiety linked to food post-recovery half a year later.

    I'm the same with fats, nutty stuff and cheeses are the only fat-dense foods I crave... but I eat other fats aswell, just to get some variance. For carbs, dried fruit, ice cream and pastries are my favourites.

    PB/Banana anything I'd guess;-) Hard to screw up that combo^^
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    Originally Posted by Tucane View Post
    Stress hormone was through the roof for me aswell, I remember it like a kind of "high" that kept me going... In my case, the rigorous schedule (2x lifting/day, + walking with a weighted backback) and the low calories made it end abruptly after a few of months. Lethargy hit like a sledgehammer and I couldn't even do a pullup in the end with max effort, also constant pain, cried and had hallucinations in the evenings and well I had no choice but to recover.

    So I just ate whatever i could get my hands on and quit lifting. I think this chain of events saved me from long-term agony. ED for shorter term likelt, but I didn't recall any anxiety linked to food post-recovery half a year later.

    I'm the same with fats, nutty stuff and cheeses are the only fat-dense foods I crave... but I eat other fats aswell, just to get some variance. For carbs, dried fruit, ice cream and pastries are my favourites.

    PB/Banana anything I'd guess;-) Hard to screw up that combo^^
    Very similar symptoms for me.

    Oddly enough, and I'm sure you probably experience this realization as well after being so lean, you underestimate how much you can actually eat without ever getting fat because we tend to just burn off most of the excess glucose.

    I see people who weigh 50+ pounds more than me eating less than me who are at least as active and it boggles my mind.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Oddly enough, and I'm sure you probably experience this realization as well after being so lean, you underestimate how much you can actually eat without ever getting fat because we tend to just burn off most of the excess glucose..
    Yoooo this is another huge thing that I learned. Especially coming from being morbidly obese, I was terrified of gaining fat back. I can eat wayyyyyyyy more than I originally thought without putting on too much fat back on as long as I’m staying on my training regime. Didn’t understand that at first.
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    How much energy do shredded people lose in heat production? Haven't read any science on this.

    I'd imagine lots of it leaving due to lack of isolating matter, aka bodyfat.
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    Originally Posted by Nicksosure1 View Post
    Yoooo this is another huge thing that I learned. Especially coming from being morbidly obese, I was terrified of gaining fat back. I can eat wayyyyyyyy more than I originally thought without putting on too much fat back on as long as I’m staying on my training regime. Didn’t understand that at first.
    It's a touch reality to accept, believe me I know.

    I was never obese, but when I was a teen I was about 185-190lb at 6-foot tall, BUT my bodyfat was probably almost to the obese range... very high 20's for sure.

    But, in retrospect, I wasn't active at all really... and boy did I eat. Now, i'm honestly kind of amazed I didn't get softer than I was, and I think all this time I spent worrying that I needed to control my intake really held me back because, now, I see that I actually respond very well to a surplus by unconsciously adjusting my movement and activity without having to plan anything.


    Originally Posted by Tucane View Post
    How much energy do shredded people lose in heat production? Haven't read any science on this.

    I'd imagine lots of it leaving due to lack of isolating matter, aka bodyfat.
    Honestly I think the response to over-feeding is HIGHLY variable.

    Intuitively I would think that people who are super-lean are basically hormonally primed for pure fat gain, but depending on your individual response to over-feeding, I'm sure some people up-regulate NEAT and heat-production simply from their body repairing non-muscle tissues, etc.

    In my case, over-feeding causes massive energy spikes, I get very warm, I want to move, etc... fidget a ton..

    Some people seem to have an almost hibernating effect where they finally refeed and their body wants to basically power-down and recoup the lost energy it's been starved for, and they end up gaining huge amounts of fat and/or water in the beginning. I think it really is quite individual.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    It's a touch reality to accept, believe me I know.

    I was never obese, but when I was a teen I was about 185-190lb at 6-foot tall, BUT my bodyfat was probably almost to the obese range... very high 20's for sure.

    But, in retrospect, I wasn't active at all really... and boy did I eat. Now, i'm honestly kind of amazed I didn't get softer than I was, and I think all this time I spent worrying that I needed to control my intake really held me back because, now, I see that I actually respond very well to a surplus by unconsciously adjusting my movement and activity without having to plan anything.




    Honestly I think the response to over-feeding is HIGHLY variable.

    Intuitively I would think that people who are super-lean are basically hormonally primed for pure fat gain, but depending on your individual response to over-feeding, I'm sure some people up-regulate NEAT and heat-production simply from their body repairing non-muscle tissues, etc.

    In my case, over-feeding causes massive energy spikes, I get very warm, I want to move, etc... fidget a ton..

    Some people seem to have an almost hibernating effect where they finally refeed and their body wants to basically power-down and recoup the lost energy it's been starved for, and they end up gaining huge amounts of fat and/or water in the beginning. I think it really is quite individual.
    I think I’m one of the “power-down” people. Anytime I decide to go even just a bit outside of my original surplus I don’t gain anymore energy, usually the opposite. Ya boy just wants to lay there and sleep all day lol

    Dependent on what and when I eat it though to an extent.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Honestly I think the response to over-feeding is HIGHLY variable.

    Intuitively I would think that people who are super-lean are basically hormonally primed for pure fat gain, but depending on your individual response to over-feeding, I'm sure some people up-regulate NEAT and heat-production simply from their body repairing non-muscle tissues, etc.

    In my case, over-feeding causes massive energy spikes, I get very warm, I want to move, etc... fidget a ton..

    Some people seem to have an almost hibernating effect where they finally refeed and their body wants to basically power-down and recoup the lost energy it's been starved for, and they end up gaining huge amounts of fat and/or water in the beginning. I think it really is quite individual.
    Seems like there is a huge individual variance.

    For me it's the same with carbs, overfeeding makes me warm, sweaty and makes me want to move around. Before bed carbs give me serious night sweats

    For fats, when overfed on cheese/nuts, I actually slow down and my feet become heavy, makes me want to lie down.

    Now I remember I did read something on sympathetic dominance and parasympathetic dominance... different reactions to feeding on carbs/fat among other things. Though it was a broscience/quackery article at first, but to my memory parts of it did make sense.
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    Originally Posted by Nicksosure1 View Post
    I think I’m one of the “power-down” people. Anytime I decide to go even just a bit outside of my original surplus I don’t gain anymore energy, usually the opposite. Ya boy just wants to lay there and sleep all day lol

    Dependent on what and when I eat it though to an extent.
    Fair point... I do find that if I eat heavily in the evening, THAT will make me tired sometimes, but during the day - say before about 5pm or so - over-feeding just gets me wired.
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    Originally Posted by Tucane View Post
    Seems like there is a huge individual variance.

    For me it's the same with carbs, overfeeding makes me warm, sweaty and makes me want to move around. Before bed carbs give me serious night sweats

    For fats, when overfed on cheese/nuts, I actually slow down and my feet become heavy, makes me want to lie down.

    Now I remember I did read something on sympathetic dominance and parasympathetic dominance... different reactions to feeding on carbs/fat among other things. Though it was a broscience/quackery article at first, but to my memory parts of it did make sense.
    Yeah fats tend to slow me down too, to a varying degree depending on the source.

    High-fat dairy SERIOUSLY bogs me down, so I tend to avoid full fat cheese, etc, for that reason. A little is fine, but if I eat a lot of pizza etc, I just wanna sit there.

    I think some of that also has to do with fats effect of bile production and how it slows gastric emptying... the food will sit longer in your stomach, bloodflow will be directed to the area, so you have less available nutrients going to the other parts of your body to fuel activity.

    Now, give me a giant bowl of honey nut cheerios with a chopped bananas and a side of OJ, maybe some peanut in there for taste, and i'll be bouncing off the walls.

    I do know my insulin sensitivity is quite good tho... my fasting glucose is usually 65 or so, and when I had it checked my HBA1C was like 4.3, which I guess is really good... means my average random glucose sits at like 85 according to the test's extrapolated estimate.
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    I made a thread quite a while ago on the same topic. So yeah I am another one who experienced this.

    But I still cannot really answer why tho.
    Finally back to track.
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    I do not have a good answer. There are weekly and monthly sodium cycles in the body. Like several other cycles that we do not know about.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Fair point... I do find that if I eat heavily in the evening, THAT will make me tired sometimes, but during the day - say before about 5pm or so - over-feeding just gets me wired.
    I’ll be more wired than tired if I rely on complex carbs. I’ve found that if I ever indulge in simple sugars or high fat in the evening, I’m done for. Don’t really even experience the sugar rush, and if I do it’s very short lived.

    Haven’t really figured out protein yet, but it’s usually pretty constant.
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    Most likely the Jupiter retrograde
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    Is that a 7 day average or a rolling 7 day average?
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    Originally Posted by Mrpb View Post
    Is that a 7 day average or a rolling 7 day average?
    7 day rolling.

    The rolling average jumps 2.5lb in 4 days
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    7 day rolling.

    The rolling average jumps 2.5lb in 4 days
    Are you sure you got the 7 day rolling right? How are you doing it? To jump 2.5 lb in 4 days there needs to be an even larger increase in weight.

    How much is the actual weight gain in those 4 days?
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    Originally Posted by Mrpb View Post
    Are you sure you got the 7 day rolling right? How are you doing it? To jump 2.5 lb in 4 days there needs to be an even larger increase in weight.

    How much is the actual weight gain in those 4 days?
    I had 2-3 days where I didn’t weigh in, and then when I did I was up 2lbs, then the nex day or so another .5, and this had held constant.

    I’m definitely doing the the average right, where today’s rolling average = the average of today and the prior 6 days.

    On paper is effectively looks like I suddenly gained about 2.5 pounds in 6 days and it’s holding there.


    Left weight is the scale, right weight is the 7-day rolling avg


    Last edited by AdamWW; 07-15-2019 at 10:14 AM.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Left weight is the scale, right weight is the 7-day rolling avg


    In order to get an accurate 7 day rolling average it's necessary to log every day. Not doing so causes larger fluctuations.
    Last edited by Mrpb; 07-16-2019 at 01:59 AM.
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    Originally Posted by Mrpb View Post
    In order to get an accurate 7 day rolling average it's necessary to log every day. Not doing so causes larger fluctuations.
    Yes, but I only missed a few, and the increase has held steady. The daily weigh in are holding at just under 135 after 4 consecutive weigh ins now.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Yes, but I only missed a few, and the increase has held steady.
    yeah but missing 5 makes a big difference in a 7 day roll... it'll be smoother if you log every day.

    So why is your weight gain non lineair? for a big part because you're not actually using a 7 day average.

    anyway, probably a good idea to keep eating what you're currently eating.
    Last edited by Mrpb; 07-16-2019 at 07:03 AM.
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