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Old 09-20-2011, 08:34 AM   #11
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Forgot to say that with the added mass I have also seen an increase in strength levels which for me is the ultimate goal behind adding mass.

LtL
BUT, do you think you could have gotten the same increase in strength gains with eating clean ? Or do you think some of the strength gains are the effect of the reduced ROM, increased leverages. Or is it a case that the extra calories have helped the strength and there is no way you could have got the same amount of calories eating clean ??

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Old 09-20-2011, 08:41 AM   #12
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BUT, do you think you could have gotten the same increase in strength gains with eating clean ? Or do you think some of the strength gains are the effect of the reduced ROM, increased leverages. Or is it a case that the extra calories have helped the strength and there is no way you could have got the same amount of calories eating clean ??

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I'm not sure mate. What I do know is that when I eat dirty, I can eat more and I feel stronger and lift more.

Bigger chest and gut has definitely helped bench, I can feel that the ROM is shorter. When I'm bigger I also feel more comfortable under a heavy squat bar. Haven't tested my pull but will be doing next week so will have to wait and see.

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Old 09-20-2011, 08:42 AM   #13
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Good stuff so far:

Ltl has covered the Powerlifting angle and I agree completely. As Powerlifters you're looking really at weight category boundaries as your guidelines rather then bodyfat etc. I'm sitting at 5kg within my weight category right now, because well that's all I'm worried about right now. As LtL said any excess fat helps too by stabilising the midsection via the belt.

Rich "Knapped!" Knapp has covered bulking in the off-season for an in-shape advanced trainee who knows what he's doing.

I'm going to deal with a slightly different angle and that is your typical teenager/beginner or even intermediate lifter who starts off a thread with "I'm looking to bulk...", I'm all for bulking in fact I wish people did it properly more often but the key is to doing it properly:

1) You should be at least within earshot or indeed lifting your all-time best poundages before you begin your bulk. This means those 2-3 weeks of 'feeling your way in' to weights, or 'building them up' should be out of the way already.

There's no sense in bulking while lifting easy weights, this just doesn't work. In fact a rank beginner would do well to just perfect form first, then once he has grasped the basics he can continue with a bulk. Jumping into 6000 calories the first day you Squat is a recipe for disaster.

2) You must know how to perform the exercises you'll be doing with good enough form to be effective and not to get injured. Note; it doesn't have to be perfect, we're always learning and as a beginner/intermediate you probably will be, but you do need to know enough not to get hurt and to get a good training effect.

There's no sense in bulking if you're just going to get injured left, right and centre and cheat your way through lifts. Also you need to know how to lift and gain on the big exercises, you must already have a decent track record in performing the Squat, Deadlift and Bench or good equivalents.

3) You need to know how to eat for gains. If you have had no prior experience of a good diet then you have no business bulking yet. Give yourself a couple of months of consistently good eating before you attempt this. Know that you can be consistent and what entails good eating. Good eating is NOT 4 protein shakes a day and a bunch of chocolate to 'deliver it'.

There's no sense in bulking if you have solely lived off Pot Noodle the past 5 years and that is all you know.

4) You must be able to sleep 'enough'. The older we get the harder this is, as commitments get in the way but you should certainly not be attempting this during very stressful and/or busy periods of your life; or making your life more stressful by staying up late.

There's no sense in bulking if you're going to party it up all night, every night.
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Old 09-20-2011, 08:45 AM   #14
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I gained 5 lbs over night. Day before I fully depleted Glycogen store with a 50 hard set w/o. The next day ate 7g's of carb for each lb. of LBM. Little spill over but this 5 lbs was replenish Glucagin stores and water IN muscle tissue. So this was a good gain. Now if I ate the same way for 3 more days the aditional 98% of the gains would be bad.

It takes only 20 sec's for the body to replenish Gucagin stores between heavy lifts.
I agree with Fazc. If you just starting out and you are only lifting weights that burn 100 cals a w/o eating 5000 cals over daily needs isn't going to do anything but put fat on.


I also agree about a P/L getting, sorry but yes fat, to shorten how far they need to lift the weight (12" vrs 24-30" ). Going down as far as bber have to is way harder than 1/2 way up like a P/L with a big belly thus less weight used.

I'm not bashing or anything So don't think I am. Its just 4th grade science on leverage and energy vrs distance of work.

But this thead isn't about that ( BBer or P/Ler ) its about the style of bulk and when, why, how, and when.
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Old 09-20-2011, 08:48 AM   #15
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Nice post Fazc...

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Old 09-20-2011, 08:59 AM   #16
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...

4) You must be able to sleep 'enough'. The older we get the harder this is, as commitments get in the way but you should certainly not be attempting this during very stressful and/or busy periods of your life; or making your life more stressful by staying up late.

There's no sense in bulking if you're going to party it up all night, every night.
Excellent point. I'm sure that crashing at 9 PM and getting up at 4:45 has been helpful during my bulk.
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Old 09-20-2011, 09:03 AM   #17
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We need to make sure we differentiate between goals. This post is about muscle building.

How aggressive you bulk when building muscle as a natural should depend on how much muscle you've already packed on, and how close you are to your natural potential.

When you are a novice you will gain muscle rapidly the first couple of years, and should eat a bit more aggressively. After that point, adding muscle takes time, and eating aggressively can add a lot of fat over this journey.

Another factor is age. Hormonally driven younger lifters can afford to eat more and should. Someone starting in their late 30s will generally have to be more precise for obvious reasons.

One thing I will say on this topic is that forums are filled with lifters unwilling to eat enough. There are many guys training hard who don't eat enough and aren't making substantial gains, and who aren't close to their natural potential yet.

I know some pro bodybuilders that have run way too tight for years and years. They are killing it in the gym but never add any substantial amount of muscle. And they are far away from their natural potentials.

I ate like a buzzsaw my first 3 years and my gains were fast and furious. If you need a visual perspective, think Graeme or Big55.

I have strong opinions about eating, and they are often misinterpreted as calling for lifters to get fat. This is far from true. I don't think if your first 3 years of hard training and aggressive eating that you're going to get fat. You're surely not going to become a sumo wrestler. But you will gain muscle, and a lot of it.

This is a tough discussion to have because there are far too many lifters on forums:

A) Not training hard enough who WOULD get fat from any bulk.
B) Not eating enough while training hard who don't add muscle and fear more calories feeling it's pointless.

There are a lot of opinions on this topic that confuse things because there are a lot of lifters not training hard enough for diet to matter.

I don't want to start a rumpus over this issue but I will this this...if you want me to train you, you will be working your ass off in the gym, and eating big to match. You will gain a lot of muscle in the first 2 years, and you might gain 10 pounds of fat.

Rapid gains has become a lost art.

I want to end with this one thought. I met a pro bodybuilder earlier this year. Spent a few days with him. He worked his ass off in the gym, and looks great in pictures, but in person with a t-shirt on you have no idea he's a bodybuilder. You have no indication whatsoever. He's been grinding it out for years, using a very tight diet.

I know another pro that is also a coach. A great guy. Knows everything on every topic, and very well respected. But if I showed you his picture in a t-shirt you would not believe he is a bodybuilder. His arms literally look 14 inches. I know he trains hard. So I ask you, what could be the issue?

MC from the forum eats big and looks like a bodybuilder in a t-shirt. He doesn't have any trophies, and maybe he will never be shredded, but I have the confidence that if I met him in public he would look beefy in a t-shirt.
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Old 09-20-2011, 09:06 AM   #18
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There's no sense in bulking while lifting easy weights, this just doesn't work. In fact a rank beginner would do well to just perfect form first, then once he has grasped the basics he can continue with a bulk.
I agree with this completely. Until progression mode is full speed, there is no point in any bulk.
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Old 09-20-2011, 09:18 AM   #19
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I think *MC* is a fantastic example of what aggressive eating can do for you, when you are still a bit off your potential, even as an older guy, when you are busting your butt in the gym. Yes he has added a bit of fat along the way, but Id take that for the muscle he has also built.

Now he is close to his potential though would it be right for the aggression to be backed down a bit, as it could become counter-productive ???

Carl.

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Old 09-20-2011, 09:30 AM   #20
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I've said it before and I'll say it again and again and again...
Let your efforts dictate your diet. I don't mean percieved efforts, I mean REAL effort. Bulking should take place when you are entering PR territory on some big lifts, like towards the end of a cycle. You know those days where you just have to eat a lot to feel normal and recovered.
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