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  1. #1
    Registered User Goals101's Avatar
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    Weight increasing, measurements lacking

    5’7”, 183lbs, 16%bf, 36yo male. I’m fairly new to lifting, I’ve always been more of a cardio person. The last six weeks I’ve been consistently hitting the gym and from everything I’ve researched, I’m eating correct.

    I’ve been following Nick Bare’s “The Bulk” program and I’m currently on week 5 and before that I did a pretty basic push, pull, legs routing for a few weeks. According to a few calculators I’ve found, 2,900kcal/day is my maintenance so I found read to surplus between 300-500 over maintenance. My meals are dialed in to 3,400kcal/day. I get 1.4g of protein per lb and slightly above 100g of fat. The rest comes from carbs. With that being said, the overall macros come to 40% carbs, 30% fat, and 30% protein. I eat the same exact meals (measure to the gram) every day so I know the calories/macros are there.

    I’ve also found that a good rate of weight (muscle) gain is around .5 - 1lb/week.

    I weigh myself every morning before I consume anything and after I use the bathroom and take a weekly average. I also take measurements (chest, hips, thighs, calves, biceps, forearm, neck, and waist).

    Since I started, my waist hasn’t gotten any bigger (thank god), my scale weight has been going up at the range mentioned above (good sign). And I’ve seen gains in my biceps. BUT... where are the rest of my gains?? My chest, thighs, hips, etc haven’t budged. I know patience is a big part of this and I’m seeing positive signs but with being a “newbie”, and seemingly eating right and lifting heavy, shouldn’t I be seeing gains everywhere?

    Thanks in advance!

    It won’t let me add the link but...

    Example of one of the days (sorry about format):

    Program Overview: This week is a 6-day training split.

    FOCUS: German Volume Training (CHEST)

    EXERCISE REPS SETS
    Bench Press 10 10
    *90 Second Rest In Between Sets - Use the same weight for all 10 sets.
    Incline Fly 12-15 4
    *Dumbbells or Cables.
    Weighted Dips 15-20 4
    Floor Press 8-10 3
    *Barbell or Dumbbell.
    Rope Cable Push Downs 12-15 4
    Push Ups 15 10
    *15 push ups, every minute on the minute, for 10 minutes = 150 pushups
    Hanging Leg Raises 15-20 4
    Last edited by Goals101; 11-13-2019 at 07:28 AM. Reason: Added workout
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  2. #2
    Registered User rsid97's Avatar
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    The main issue here is you've only gained about 2.5-5lbs here. So you may very well have gained muscle everywhere but just can't see it due to how little of it you have gained.

    Dunno about the routine that you have mentioned (might be worth positing it to get it critiqued) but your diet is on point and your gaining at a decent rate. Keep that up for a year or so, keep getting stronger across a variety of exercises and rep ranges, recovery and sleep adequately and you'll start seeing visual and physical changes across the board.

    As a newbie, a big part of your early stage progress is also going to be neurological adaptations which you need to keep in mind. But those are all side factors, the main thing is you've only really been doing things properly (assuming its a good program) for 5 weeks.
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  3. #3
    pay the iron price SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    It has only been 6 weeks. Keep making progress with lifting. As mentioned, you should really be using a routine that has planned progressive overload and forces you to keep pushing after the initial newbie gain period.

    Part of the problem is lack of understanding of body composition. It always takes longer and requires more effort than people think to make enough of a change for it to be noticeable or even measurable. I'm sure stuff is happening under the surface.

    Remember that your measurements can shrink when you lose fat - so that can easily offset any muscle gain even when you are gaining weight (at least in the early days it might).
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  4. #4
    Registered User air2fakie's Avatar
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    You started as a beginner on a PPL and then switched after a few weeks. And you've been bulking for only 5 weeks. Take a photo for yourself now, and then compare in about 3 months.

    Don't try to track visible results every day or every week - you wouldn't even notice them if you're checking that often.
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  5. #5
    Registered User CommitmentRulz's Avatar
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    As a natural, if you are doing EVERYTHING right (lifting with good program and effort), nutrition, and rest/recovery), you MIGHT gain a HALF POUND of muscle in a week.

    Given that you started and already changed programs, it's probably fair to say you have not maximized muscle potential gain. So you MIGHT have gained 2 pounds of muscle - over your entire body. It's going to be hard for that to "show up". Patience, my friend. ;-)
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  6. #6
    Registered User Goals101's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    It has only been 6 weeks. Keep making progress with lifting. As mentioned, you should really be using a routine that has planned progressive overload and forces you to keep pushing after the initial newbie gain period.

    Part of the problem is lack of understanding of body composition. It always takes longer and requires more effort than people think to make enough of a change for it to be noticeable or even measurable. I'm sure stuff is happening under the surface.

    Remember that your measurements can shrink when you lose fat - so that can easily offset any muscle gain even when you are gaining weight (at least in the early days it might).

    I appreciate the response. I’ve added an example of the workout in my original post.
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  7. #7
    Han shot first! TolerantLactose's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Goals101 View Post
    FOCUS: German Volume Training (CHEST)

    EXERCISE REPS SETS
    Bench Press 10 10
    *90 Second Rest In Between Sets - Use the same weight for all 10 sets.
    Incline Fly 12-15 4
    *Dumbbells or Cables.
    Weighted Dips 15-20 4
    Floor Press 8-10 3
    *Barbell or Dumbbell.
    Rope Cable Push Downs 12-15 4
    Push Ups 15 10
    *15 push ups, every minute on the minute, for 10 minutes = 150 pushups
    Hanging Leg Raises 15-20 4
    I don't think this amount of volume is appropriate to someone fairly new to lifting.
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  8. #8
    Registered User dazitmayn's Avatar
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    depending on your height and frame you probably aren't going to notice much unless you gain a good 10-15 lbs.
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