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  1. #1
    Registered User BlueDay93's Avatar
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    Strength and weight going up. No muscle gain

    Hi fellas.

    Ive been bulking since April and following the Fierce 5 novice program.

    My weight has gone from 154lbs to 164lbs and my lifts have all gone up but really unhappy with my progress.

    When I compare the pictures before and after all I see is fat gains and a bigger stomach and still very low muscle mass and can't understand where I'm going wrong? I track all my food meticulously and have been ensuring I eat 1gram per lb of bodyweight.

    Any suggestions please... . I know its only been 5 months but I'd expect at least some noob gains.
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  2. #2
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    You probably have gained some muscle - along with some fat. So the overall effect is that you are a similar shape. You need to gain a lot more muscle and then lose the fat before seeing muscle definition.

    You don't reach a final physique with a novice routine - but they are a good first step.

    What are your lifts before/after BTW?
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    Registered User coachcalande's Avatar
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    Initial strength gains are often from neurological adaptations and gained skill in movement patterns.

    You will likely gain more mass by increasing your training volume and pushing every set closer to failure.

    Smooth body fat blurring out definition is never fun but at the five month mark others should definitely be able to see broader chest, back, shoulders and thickness in arms and legs.
    "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. "By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

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    Registered User BlueDay93's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    You probably have gained some muscle - along with some fat. So the overall effect is that you are a similar shape. You need to gain a lot more muscle and then lose the fat before seeing muscle definition.

    You don't reach a final physique with a novice routine - but they are a good first step.

    What are your lifts before/after BTW?
    Thanks for the reply mate. I didn't really have any "PB's" for the lifts before I started I just started with a lower weight than I thought I could do like the program suggested. For example I started at 52.5kg for bench, I failed at 60kg, but then progressed to 70kg.

    My strength gains don't seem great for 5 months now I'm looking at it on paper...


    Bench:52.5kg to 70kg (3x5)
    Squat: 85kg to 110kg (3x5)
    Pendlay 37.5kg to 50kg (3x8)
    Overhead Press: 35kg to 50kg (3x5)
    Deadlift: 105kg to 135kg (3x5)
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    Registered User BlueDay93's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by coachcalande View Post
    Initial strength gains are often from neurological adaptations and gained skill in movement patterns.

    You will likely gain more mass by increasing your training volume and pushing every set closer to failure.

    Smooth body fat blurring out definition is never fun but at the five month mark others should definitely be able to see broader chest, back, shoulders and thickness in arms and legs.
    Yeah this was my fear. It's frustrating as I've stayed consistent with the lifting and my diet is on point but there doesn't appear to be any growth at all other than my gut
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    Try more sets per
    Body part
    "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. "By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

    Old Guy deadlifting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zMrim-0Dks
    bench press https://youtu.be/GaRzfueJVJQ

    Fat ol man with 21.5 inch arms pushing for that 1500 pound club mark.
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  7. #7
    Gaintaining Mrpb's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BlueDay93 View Post
    Thanks for the reply mate. I didn't really have any "PB's" for the lifts before I started I just started with a lower weight than I thought I could do like the program suggested. For example I started at 52.5kg for bench, I failed at 60kg, but then progressed to 70kg.

    My strength gains don't seem great for 5 months now I'm looking at it on paper...


    Bench:52.5kg to 70kg (3x5)
    Squat: 85kg to 110kg (3x5)
    Pendlay 37.5kg to 50kg (3x8)
    Overhead Press: 35kg to 50kg (3x5)
    Deadlift: 105kg to 135kg (3x5)
    Well, you're moving in the right direction.

    But really, you're not even bench pressing your body weight for 5 reps. Of course you won't look like you lift yet. Keep going, keep gaining 1 to 2 pounds per month, keep progressing on your lifts.

    When you can bench press say 85 kg for 5 reps you'll likely look better.

    Ps. you're gaining muscle it's just hard to see when you carry a bit more fat. That's normal though. Just keep going.

    Originally Posted by BlueDay93 View Post
    Yeah this was my fear. It's frustrating as I've stayed consistent with the lifting and my diet is on point but there doesn't appear to be any growth at all other than my gut
    You may be gaining a bit too fast. Try gaining 1 to 1.5 pounds per month. See if that still allows you to progress on your lifts.
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    Originally Posted by coachcalande View Post
    Initial strength gains are often from neurological adaptations and gained skill in movement patterns.

    You will likely gain more mass by increasing your training volume and pushing every set closer to failure.

    Smooth body fat blurring out definition is never fun but at the five month mark others should definitely be able to see broader chest, back, shoulders and thickness in arms and legs.
    i just saw you deadlift vid.....dude you're a monster!!!! chime in here more often please
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    Registered User 410Stroker's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BlueDay93 View Post
    Thanks for the reply mate. I didn't really have any "PB's" for the lifts before I started I just started with a lower weight than I thought I could do like the program suggested. For example I started at 52.5kg for bench, I failed at 60kg, but then progressed to 70kg.

    My strength gains don't seem great for 5 months now I'm looking at it on paper...


    Bench:52.5kg to 70kg (3x5)
    Squat: 85kg to 110kg (3x5)
    Pendlay 37.5kg to 50kg (3x8)
    Overhead Press: 35kg to 50kg (3x5)
    Deadlift: 105kg to 135kg (3x5)
    I would also look at it like this, you have made some solid percentage of gains from the numbers you presented.
    Bench: 33% increase
    Squat: 29.4%
    Pendlay: 33%
    Overhead Press: 42.9%
    Deadlift: 22.2%

    While the overall numbers might not look that significant at first glance, it has to be looked at from the POV of the starting point, which is why i used %. Yes there are tons of things you can do to further improve, but those percentages are a really good start.

    Also this routine is one a coworker is using, and it is a novice routine, and is not meant for long term use, it is 3 months, 6 max before you plateau with it and need to adjust, this is a stepping stone routine. Like others I suggest more sets, the old 5x5 isnt a bad way to go, but you can also look into progressive overload, or others. I think right now, time to set some short and long term goals, and adjust the routine from there.
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  10. #10
    Registered User BlueDay93's Avatar
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    Would you suggest the fierce 5 Upper/lower?

    I know my lifts probably wouldn't be classed as intermediate but I do feel as if I'm starting to plateau on a few of my lifts. Although I've not yet done a deload
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  11. #11
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    No, I would try the deload first. Make sure you take enough weight off for a good run up to your previous weights.
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  12. #12
    Registered User BlueDay93's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    No, I would try the deload first. Make sure you take enough weight off for a good run up to your previous weights.
    Yeah I'll try the deload first.

    Any suggestions if I do the deload and still seem to hit a wall with my lifts? For example if hit the same weight about 3 times with my OHP and reset and the same weight twice with bench press. Deadlift and squat seem to be progressing but I'm having to reset each time I hit a new weight..
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  13. #13
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    If you start to stall that often it would be a good idea to switch to U/L.
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