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  1. #1
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    Cool Should I bulk or cut from this position - skinny fat

    pretty classic case of skinny fat here. I'm 163lbs, 5'8.

    I've been going to the gym on and off for 3 years but never consistently. I finally wanna start a consistent workout plan. I already got my exercises and **** down and I know what I'm doing workout wise.

    i've been bulking for like a month now already and i am getting stronger and building muscle BUT i'm also gaining fat which is kind of demoralizing because of the fact i'm already chubby.


    I'm basically thinking that either I should bulk and build some solid muscle and just suck up the fact that I will be kinda fat. then cut once I have a solid foundation. That could work for me cos losing weight is really easy for me as I'm a natural hard gainer with high metabolism (the only reason I'm skinny fat now is from ****ty gym routines and bad diet while trying to bulk over the past 3 years). Also seeing as it's winter, it's probably the best time to bulk too.

    On the other hand I could cut first but then I'd be a ****ing twig so that's something i really don't wanna do.

    Basically I came here to ask. could I pull off a clean bulk here or will i become really fat if i bulk from here? also if you do suggest a bulk, how long would you suggest I bulk before shredding off the fat?
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    Slow bulk with lots of patience. Aim for 1-2lbs per month. Plan to bulk for 8-10 months.

    I see these people bulking for 3-4 months then cut, then bulk, etc.. It's stupid.
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    Originally Posted by 1MANU View Post
    Slow bulk with lots of patience. Aim for 1-2lbs per month. Plan to bulk for 8-10 months.

    I see these people bulking for 3-4 months then cut, then bulk, etc.. It's stupid.
    hey, i do that! my 3 months long cut was torture. this is my 4th month bulking again, and i'm planning to do a 1,5 months cut in a month or so. some people just hate doing long cuts, why do you think it's stupid? just curious
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    Looking at your pictures, you're in a standing position.

    When cutting/bulking, I recommend a combination of sitting, standing, AND laying down (especially during sleep), depending on the circumstances.

    When cutting, standing more can be advantageous for calorie burn.
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    Originally Posted by faithbrah View Post
    hey, i do that! my 3 months long cut was torture. this is my 4th month bulking again, and i'm planning to do a 1,5 months cut in a month or so. some people just hate doing long cuts, why do you think it's stupid? just curious
    I'm saying cutting/bulking cycles for 3-4 months are pointless. Bulk for 3-4 months, then cut 2 months, then bulk 3 months, etc..

    Never change your physique in the long run. To make appreciable gains a bulk should be at least 6 months. I didn't even consider a cut until two years of consistent training and in a surplus. That's just me though. I had some good guidance.
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    Originally Posted by Lookingfortips View Post
    pretty classic case of skinny fat here. I'm 163lbs, 5'8.

    I've been going to the gym on and off for 3 years but never consistently. I finally wanna start a consistent workout plan. I already got my exercises and **** down and I know what I'm doing workout wise.

    i've been bulking for like a month now already and i am getting stronger and building muscle BUT i'm also gaining fat which is kind of demoralizing because of the fact i'm already chubby.


    I'm basically thinking that either I should bulk and build some solid muscle and just suck up the fact that I will be kinda fat. then cut once I have a solid foundation. That could work for me cos losing weight is really easy for me as I'm a natural hard gainer with high metabolism (the only reason I'm skinny fat now is from ****ty gym routines and bad diet while trying to bulk over the past 3 years). Also seeing as it's winter, it's probably the best time to bulk too.

    On the other hand I could cut first but then I'd be a ****ing twig so that's something i really don't wanna do.

    Basically I came here to ask. could I pull off a clean bulk here or will i become really fat if i bulk from here? also if you do suggest a bulk, how long would you suggest I bulk before shredding off the fat?
    You're in a tough position because you're probably too fat to successfully bulk, while you don't carry enough muscle to look good after cutting.

    What is your lifting program? This is very important.
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    Registered Soul faithbrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1MANU View Post
    I'm saying cutting/bulking cycles for 3-4 months are pointless. Bulk for 3-4 months, then cut 2 months, then bulk 3 months, etc..

    Never change your physique in the long run. To make appreciable gains a bulk should be at least 6 months. I didn't even consider a cut until two years of consistent training and in a surplus. That's just me though. I had some good guidance.
    i thought they gave the same results, the only difference being that you'll have a more visible transformation if you cut for 6 months straight? personally i'd rather not do a "long" cut anymore, each to their own i guess
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    Originally Posted by faithbrah View Post
    i thought they gave the same results, the only difference being that you'll have a more visible transformation if you cut for 6 months straight? personally i'd rather not do a "long" cut anymore, each to their own i guess
    Nope. When bulking and cutting both have a momentum that builds from the state of being in a deficit or a surplus, some of this is psychological and some is physical. Otherwise you could literally bulk for one week and then cut for one week. You eventually need a sustained state of one or the other to maximize results.

    Eventually when you get ‘too soft’ or ‘too lean’, you can either do a mini cut or a diet break, etc, to improve results, but choosing one or the other is best.

    Especially when bulking, you should probably limit fat gain enough so that when you do have to cut for a longer period, it’s not a 50:50 split.... bulking for 1 year shouldn’t require cutting for one year....
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    Registered User Lookingfortips's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1MANU View Post
    Slow bulk with lots of patience. Aim for 1-2lbs per month. Plan to bulk for 8-10 months.

    I see these people bulking for 3-4 months then cut, then bulk, etc.. It's stupid.

    i was thinking of doing that to be honest, that's what i'm tryna do now cos i'm doing a clean bulk eating 3200cals a day with 150g protein.

    it's going well, my only worry is that i'll get like really fat in the process. surely if i bulk for 8-10 months i'll be fat as **** by the end of it. even on a small calorie surplus which i'm on now?
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    Originally Posted by Lookingfortips View Post
    i was thinking of doing that to be honest, that's what i'm tryna do now cos i'm doing a clean bulk eating 3200cals a day with 150g protein.

    it's going well, my only worry is that i'll get like really fat in the process. surely if i bulk for 8-10 months i'll be fat as **** by the end of it. even on a small calorie surplus which i'm on now?
    If you are gaining between 1-2lb a month you cant gain massive amounts of fat. Now if you calorie target (3200) is producing a greater increase in weight then that calorie target is too high, forget what a online calculator says monitor your weight and adjust accordingly use real data.
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    Originally Posted by Lookingfortips View Post
    i was thinking of doing that to be honest, that's what i'm tryna do now cos i'm doing a clean bulk eating 3200cals a day with 150g protein.

    it's going well, my only worry is that i'll get like really fat in the process. surely if i bulk for 8-10 months i'll be fat as **** by the end of it. even on a small calorie surplus which i'm on now?
    I’m also 5’8, and IMO 3200 is probably too many calories for a “lean bulk” at your stats. How fast are you gaining weight? If it’s more than 3lb/month, you’re eating too much. Minimize fat gain by controlling bodyweight gain...2-3lb/month is the sweet spot.

    Also considering your weight of 163lb at 5’8, and little/no visible muscle mass, you’re probably carrying quite a bit of fat...my personal recommendation would be to cut now because even under the best circumstances you will gain fat bulking...by the time you build some decent muscle who knows how much fat you’ll gain...by getting lean now/first, you’ll be able to control/stay on top of your body fat and never have to go above 20%, which you will do if you bulk now...

    Also I know from personal experience that getting lean is more motivating in the short term than getting fatter/bulkier...it can be a huge confidence boost and fuel your desire to keep training and improving.
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    Originally Posted by hardyboysare View Post
    If you are gaining between 1-2lb a month you cant gain massive amounts of fat. Now if you calorie target (3200) is producing a greater increase in weight then that calorie target is too high, forget what a online calculator says monitor your weight and adjust accordingly use real data.
    OP: This. What he said.

    You may also even do some recomping in the process since you have been inconsistent with training to begin with.
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    Originally Posted by sunsean View Post
    I’m also 5’8, and IMO 3200 is probably too many calories for a “lean bulk” at your stats. How fast are you gaining weight? If it’s more than 3lb/month, you’re eating too much. Minimize fat gain by controlling bodyweight gain...2-3lb/month is the sweet spot.

    Also considering your weight of 163lb at 5’8, and little/no visible muscle mass, you’re probably carrying quite a bit of fat...my personal recommendation would be to cut now because even under the best circumstances you will gain fat bulking...by the time you build some decent muscle who knows how much fat you’ll gain...by getting lean now/first, you’ll be able to control/stay on top of your body fat and never have to go above 20%, which you will do if you bulk now...

    Also I know from personal experience that getting lean is more motivating in the short term than getting fatter/bulkier...it can be a huge confidence boost and fuel your desire to keep training and improving.
    it's weird cos i was eating 2900cal a day with teh same protein and my strength just wasn't increasing, so i thought i'd add 300cals to the daily intake. That's how i ended up at 3200cal. even i think it looks too much but at 2900 my strength just wouldn't go up, in fact it looked like it was going down. but now it's going up consistently so i i'm like **** it, 3200 it is. I've always had high metabolism and been a hard gainer to be fair so it wouldn't surprise me. I don't look it now but before i'd ever set foot in a gym i was very very skinny and couldn't gain weight to save my life.
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    Originally Posted by Lookingfortips View Post
    it's weird cos i was eating 2900cal a day with teh same protein and my strength just wasn't increasing, so i thought i'd add 300cals to the daily intake. That's how i ended up at 3200cal. even i think it looks too much but at 2900 my strength just wouldn't go up, in fact it looked like it was going down. but now it's going up consistently so i i'm like **** it, 3200 it is. I've always had high metabolism and been a hard gainer to be fair so it wouldn't surprise me. I don't look it now but before i'd ever set foot in a gym i was very very skinny and couldn't gain weight to save my life.
    But that doesn't answer the question how much weight have you gained in the last month on 3200 calories?
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    Originally Posted by hardyboysare View Post
    But that doesn't answer the question how much weight have you gained in the last month on 3200 calories?
    This ^ were you gaining weight eating 2900 calories but lifts not improving? Could be an issue with your training/recovery and not diet...
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    Originally Posted by hardyboysare View Post
    But that doesn't answer the question how much weight have you gained in the last month on 3200 calories?

    well i only bumped it up to 3200 calories 2 weeks ago so i can't say but i know for sure that as soon as i started eating that much my strength started increasing again.

    but I"ll do what you guys said. I'll aim for 0.2kg weight increase a week (about .4lbs, so that adds to 1.6lbs a month). i'll see if the calories I'm eating is working for that goal.

    is weighing yourself once a week gonna give you an accurate measurement of how much weight you're gaining? I'm 73.9kg right now, so next monday i should be 74.1kg based on this 1-2lbs a month weight increase goal.
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    Originally Posted by Lookingfortips View Post
    well i only bumped it up to 3200 calories 2 weeks ago so i can't say but i know for sure that as soon as i started eating that much my strength started increasing again.

    but I"ll do what you guys said. I'll aim for 0.2kg weight increase a week (about .4lbs, so that adds to 1.6lbs a month). i'll see if the calories I'm eating is working for that goal.

    is weighing yourself once a week gonna give you an accurate measurement of how much weight you're gaining? I'm 73.9kg right now, so next monday i should be 74.1kg based on this 1-2lbs a month weight increase goal.
    Personally I would weigh everyday in order to produce more data points and to ensure a running average of weight increase. As one day a week weigh-ins can be effected by many effects, toilet habits, extra carbs (water weight), higher hydration, inflammation of muscle, etc.

    So weigh daily in the morning after going to the toilet and monitor over a month ensuring that after a month you only gain between 1-2lbs. Weekly targets are fine but making adjustments too quickly can be counter productive so compare week vs week averages.

    Also what was your weight gain with 2900 calories then? Over the last month before the increase in calories.
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    Originally Posted by hardyboysare View Post
    Personally I would weigh everyday in order to produce more data points and to ensure a running average of weight increase. As one day a week weigh-ins can be effected by many effects, toilet habits, extra carbs (water weight), higher hydration, inflammation of muscle, etc.

    So weigh daily in the morning after going to the toilet and monitor over a month ensuring that after a month you only gain between 1-2lbs. Weekly targets are fine but making adjustments too quickly can be counter productive so compare week vs week averages.

    Also what was your weight gain with 2900 calories then? Over the last month before the increase in calories.
    to be honest with you I don't know cos i never wrote any numbers down, will start doing that now though.but for now, all i know is that my strength was not increasing.

    i'm right to say that if you're not getting stronger and you're sleep and stuff is all good, then you need to eat more right?
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    Originally Posted by Lookingfortips View Post
    to be honest with you I don't know cos i never wrote any numbers down, will start doing that now though.but for now, all i know is that my strength was not increasing.

    i'm right to say that if you're not getting stronger and you're sleep and stuff is all good, then you need to eat more right?
    No necessarily it depends on too many factors. I would never rush to increase calories until I was sure my weight was not increasing over a prolonged period (2 weeks +). As maintenance of strength could be caused by different reasons and nutrition and train methods may help push through the plateau.
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    Average weight increase (daily) is the most important thing you need to consider combined with regular body measurements (weekly for stomach and monthly is fine for the rest). As for strength plateau may require extra calories around workout times, deloads, simply bad session, more effective warm up, greater rest time, technique analysis, smaller weight progression, progression with volume instead.

    As you can see many things can effect a strength stall which is not necessarily a stall in muscle growth requiring more calories. Muscle growth is also not linear same with fat loss so it is possible some weeks will be less effective then other weeks so trying everything else is advised before jumping to add calories this ensures minimal fat gains.

    note:- 404 error code so over 2 messages
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  21. #21
    Registered User Lookingfortips's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by sunsean View Post
    This ^ were you gaining weight eating 2900 calories but lifts not improving? Could be an issue with your training/recovery and not diet...
    i thought i could be something like taht but i get plenty of sleep (atleast 8 hours) and have 3 gym sessions a week with a days rest in-between each session and never train same muscles twice within 48 hours.

    also i train hard when i do, 5 sets of 8-12 reps on every exercise. everything exercise I do with 5 sets of 8-12 reps. and i always leave the gym KNOWING i went hard cos I'm freaking dead, can barely move the body part and get a massive pump.

    over the 3 years of inconsistent gyming i've learned a lot of the ins and outs and **** i just never put a consistent amount of time into doing it until now.



    so recovery and training wise i'm very sure that I'm doing fine and also considering the fact that my strength just immediately started increasing again since i upped my calories makes me think i was definately thinking right by increasing my calories. I'm 21 years old btw so that could be why the high calories is necessary.

    IME i've never had luck doing Recomps or anything. I tried eating 2500cal a day to recomp last summer but all that happened is I lost fat, it just became a cut, no muscle gained.

    Point I'm making is that this 3200cal number has come from trial and error and looking at my other elements of my training and it really does seem like my food intake was my issue seeing as upping the calories did the job and it was the only factor i changed, not any of my training regimen.
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Nope. When bulking and cutting both have a momentum that builds from the state of being in a deficit or a surplus, some of this is psychological and some is physical. Otherwise you could literally bulk for one week and then cut for one week. You eventually need a sustained state of one or the other to maximize results.
    the one week example is mostly a bad idea because of metabolic and adaptive issues, right? does your momentum still build after 4-5 months of bulking? either way i might consider prolonging my bulk and hitting the desired numbers before going on a cut. thanks
    munchies on a cut is the true test of discipline crew
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  23. #23
    team ketchup AdamWW's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by faithbrah View Post
    the one week example is mostly a bad idea because of metabolic and adaptive issues, right? does your momentum still build after 4-5 months of bulking? either way i might consider prolonging my bulk and hitting the desired numbers before going on a cut. thanks
    The longer you’re in a slight surplus, the more lean tissue you can build, so in theory your metabolic rate should continue very slowly rise.

    However like I said before, if all you’re doing is bulking in a very lean way, then cutting should never be a big deal. If someone bulks to 17% bodyfat at 200lb, cutting to 10% and 184lb would be just a few months time.
    Strength is never a weakness, weakness is never a strength.
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