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Old 12-12-2011, 01:12 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by tank View Post
I want to compete someday, but I feel like I would benefit more in the long run by gaining as much as I can early on, that way when I do start competing I can find a weight class to cut down to. Is this flawed logic?
Well, I recommend a slower, controlled gain. Strength building takes years, and gaining weight can certainly add to lift totals, but if you go too aggressive you will end up with a long way to go and not much beneficial weight left to gain.

But my thinking is that, based on that very premise, if I weigh more I will be ABLE to lift more, nevermind expectations.
It works more like this for me personally..."When I eat more I make better strength gains." This won't necessarily require over-aggressive eating or sloppy eating. So go slow, learn your body, eat "a little" extra and see what happens.

My point being that I absolutely have more lean body mass to gain, and while that proves I am carrying “too much” fat right now, doesn’t that fat help me get stronger and thus bigger?
Well right now the weight addition while training hard would translate into more muscle, and that will help you move more iron. The extra food also helps recovery, so it assists you in multiple ways. It's the extra food that helps build and recover, not simply the bodyweight...though that can be beneficial for some lifts as well.

It could be argued that gaining weight is necessary when adding weight to the barbell warrants it, but i would ask isn't that too late?
There are 2 levels for a natural lifter:

Level 1 - Below your natural muscular potential.
Level 2 - Close to your natural muscular potential.

The more muscle you have, the more strength potential you will have. But the more muscle you have, the less beneficial it is to bulk aggressively. Simply stated, aggressive eating is more beneficial the first several years of training as you pack on muscle and are building strength very rapidly.

If a lifter "waits" until he stalls then considers that maybe he wouldn't have stalled had he been heavier or had more mass, shouldn't that be curtailed by consistently increasing body weight until needing to reduce weight for some specific reason?
True stalls are complicated and take a very long time to hit. I know many lifters on this board who are near Elite level who have never hit a hard wall. Even the biggest and baddest on this forum are making progress year in and year out.

The definition of a stall needs to be understood. Progress slows over time, but that doesn't mean what you're doing is wrong. A slow weight gain can certainly add strength, but an experienced lifter should still be able to make yearly gains even if they aren't gaining much if any weight.

Adding weight can aid hard work and a good training approach.

What dictates how much you should weigh?
At minimum you want to add as much muscle to your frame as humanly possible. Though some powerlifters might not look like bodybuilders, they have gained quite a bit of muscle mass compared to where they started.

Again I come back to food as the primary focus and not bodyweight. Food is the anabolic and recovery tool, and weight gain is the result.

There are guys like DW on the forum who compete under 170 and are deadlifting closer to 600 pounds. He is very lean, but has added a good amount of muscle over the last few years.

I added a lot of strength and muscle my first 2 years without adding much, if any fat. My point is that for the first several years that extra food will help build muscle and add weight and might not require a 30-50 pound weight gain. You could gain 15 pounds of muscle and easily be lifting 300-400-500 or more.

My only point in all this is to not worry about weight per se, but to worry about eating enough so that you are building muscle, and getting good recovery.

I am able to build strength while cutting, but it is much slower. I gain strength while eating more, but it doesn't have to be a lot more. You can get brutally strong at 200-220 pounds or less. Take your time and add weight slowly, unless you are extremely underweight. then I recommend training hard and adding weight more rapidly until your weight is normalized.

I hope I made sense. Mileage may vary.

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