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  1. #1
    Registered User Adrenaline91's Avatar
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    BB.com newbie getting back into the game

    Hey everyone...I’m a 5’11-6’0, 205lbs 29 year old who has been out of the serious bodybuilding game for a while. I used to lift 4-5 days a week a few years back and was quite shredded but I slacked off until recently and probably lost quite a bit off muscle mass while gaining body fat. Now I’ve decided to pick things up again and I’ve uploaded a photo onto my dashboard with my starting point.

    Whether I cut, bulk or try to do both at the same time with the hope that muscle memory sees me through is really down to body fat percentage, but I can’t for the life of me figure out where I stand. Could you please have a look at the photo on my dashboard and give any advice possible.

    What do you estimate my body fat percentage to be?

    Should I start clean bulking or cutting?

    Any other advice on where I should start diet and training wise with my previous experience in mind?

    Great to be part of the community!
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  2. #2
    Registered User Adrenaline91's Avatar
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    I added a better full body photo seem the other was probably a little difficult to tell much from.
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  3. #3
    Registered User 1stCoachJoe's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Adrenaline91 View Post
    Hey everyone...I’m a 5’11-6’0, 205lbs 29 year old who has been out of the serious bodybuilding game for a while. I used to lift 4-5 days a week a few years back and was quite shredded but I slacked off until recently and probably lost quite a bit off muscle mass while gaining body fat. Now I’ve decided to pick things up again and I’ve uploaded a photo onto my dashboard with my starting point.

    Whether I cut, bulk or try to do both at the same time with the hope that muscle memory sees me through is really down to body fat percentage, but I can’t for the life of me figure out where I stand. Could you please have a look at the photo on my dashboard and give any advice possible.

    What do you estimate my body fat percentage to be?

    Should I start clean bulking or cutting?

    Any other advice on where I should start diet and training wise with my previous experience in mind?

    Great to be part of the community!
    Welcome back to the jungle!

    The approach you should take is contingent upon your short and long-term goals. Without defining such, it's not possible to develop a meaningful plan of action.

    Yes, depending on how many years of training you have under your belt, muscle memory can do wonders!

    Insofar as your BF, at a quick glance of your sideways photos, I'd guess somewhere between 15-20%.

    Hope that helps some...
    Without proper diets and effective meal plans dialed in, you might well be spitting in the wind.
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  4. #4
    Registered User Adrenaline91's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1stCoachJoe View Post
    Welcome back to the jungle!

    The approach you should take is contingent upon your short and long-term goals. Without defining such, it's not possible to develop a meaningful plan of action.

    Yes, depending on how many years of training you have under your belt, muscle memory can do wonders!

    Insofar as your BF, at a quick glance of your sideways photos, I'd guess somewhere between 15-20%.

    Hope that helps some...
    Thanks for that, appreciate it.

    My short term goals at the moment are to cut down to 10-12% over the next couple of months to lose the body fat I’ve gained since I let myself go. I’m down to 91kg (200 lbs) currently after dropping 4kg in the last 3 weeks, a lot of it probably water weight.

    My long term goals after hopefully getting down to around 85kg (187 lbs) at 10-12% are to put that weight back on in muscle mass through bulking and cutting cycles so I’m around 200 lbs lean at 10-12%.

    I just wasn’t sure if my body fat was high enough to cut first or if I should be clean bulking first due to not enough muscle mass?
    Last edited by Adrenaline91; 09-12-2020 at 04:24 PM.
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  5. #5
    Registered User 1stCoachJoe's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Adrenaline91 View Post
    Thanks for that, appreciate it.

    My short term goals at the moment are to cut down to 10-12% over the next couple of months to lose the body fat I’ve gained since I let myself go. I’m down to 91kg (200 lbs) currently after dropping 4kg in the last 3 weeks, a lot of it probably water weight.

    My long term goals after hopefully getting down to around 85kg (187 lbs) at 10-12% are to put that weight back on in muscle mass through bulking and cutting cycles so I’m around 200 lbs lean at 10-12%.

    I just wasn’t sure if my body fat was high enough to cut first or if I should be clean bulking first due to not enough muscle mass?
    Your plan of attack sounds reasonable to me. According to it, you have answered your own question.

    Since you are not at 10-12% BF at present, your stated short-term objective is to achieve such first prior to going on a slow lean bulk.

    I would suggest going very slowly with your ongoing cyclical cut and bulk phases. i.e. 6-months cut and 6-months bulk. In doing so you'll achieve full adaptation to both modalities. I am of the belief that this will ensure the best retention of gains on both sides of the equation.

    Finally, in terms of caloric intake, I try to shy away from huge changes from bulking to cutting. 250-500 cal deficit during the cut phase, then going to true maintenance for a few weeks, followed by a barely perceptible 100-200 calorie surplus for the balance of the bulk.

    The margin of such a surplus is so thin that I personally do not adjust my numbers above maintenance all throughout my bulks. That way, if I go over maintenance by 100 - 200 calories on any given day, I know I'm still good. I, however, like to maintain a 10% BF range all throughout my bulk phase from a low in the 7% range during cuts. Everyone is different in their preferences - that just so happens to be mine.

    As a notable example, if all your numbers are reconcilable, accurate, and true, a 125 daily surplus will incite a weight gain of 1/4 lb. per week. Over the course of a 6-month lean bulk phase, sticking to such a protocol, you will put on roughly 6 lbs +/-. How that 6 lb. weight gain is divided between fat and muscle is a function of training intensity, volume, genetics, and a host of other factors. My guess is that 2/3rds of it will most likely be fat.
    Without proper diets and effective meal plans dialed in, you might well be spitting in the wind.
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  6. #6
    Registered User Adrenaline91's Avatar
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    Thanks Joe!

    Your guess of 15-20% was within the range as I just had a scan done which returned a reading of 19.8%. It also showed that I had 47% skeletal muscle mass which I believe is pretty good and should support the idea of a slowish cut?
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  7. #7
    Registered User 1stCoachJoe's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Adrenaline91 View Post
    Thanks Joe!

    Your guess of 15-20% was within the range as I just had a scan done which returned a reading of 19.8%. It also showed that I had 47% skeletal muscle mass which I believe is pretty good and should support the idea of a slowish cut?
    Sure thing, Adrenaline... Best of luck on the cut!
    Without proper diets and effective meal plans dialed in, you might well be spitting in the wind.
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  8. #8
    Certified Stud mikey09120's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Adrenaline91 View Post
    Hey everyone...I’m a 5’11-6’0, 205lbs 29 year old who has been out of the serious bodybuilding game for a while. I used to lift 4-5 days a week a few years back and was quite shredded but I slacked off until recently and probably lost quite a bit off muscle mass while gaining body fat. Now I’ve decided to pick things up again and I’ve uploaded a photo onto my dashboard with my starting point.

    Whether I cut, bulk or try to do both at the same time with the hope that muscle memory sees me through is really down to body fat percentage, but I can’t for the life of me figure out where I stand. Could you please have a look at the photo on my dashboard and give any advice possible.

    What do you estimate my body fat percentage to be?

    Should I start clean bulking or cutting?

    Any other advice on where I should start diet and training wise with my previous experience in mind?

    Great to be part of the community!
    You look good man. Hard to decide cut or lean bulk. Cut will get you shredded as it looks like you have plenty of chest, abs, muscle under the fat.
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