This past summer I used a strength program while on a cutting phase and it worked fantastically. My bodyfat decreased significantly while my muscle density increased dramatically and I retained almost all of my lean mass. Now I’m curious as to what kind of results I could look forward to receiving if taking in a surplus of calories, keeping my energy expenditure to a minimum, etc. Should I see any noticable size gains off of this, or will I most likely only be able to lay the ground work for my next mass phase?
Read Chad Waterbury’s “4 Weightlifiting Myths Dispelled” in this weeks issue. If you keep your calories up, you should see some gains in size. I am currently Lifting for strength, and seeing increases in mass.
You can certainly gain size on 5x5, or any strength based program. If you look at this week’s issue of T-Mag, Chad Waterbury discusses that it is a caloric surplus or deficit which will be a determining factor.
Also, as discussed in that article, total number of reps will come into play. If you normally use about 3 sets of 10 reps when bulking, then you're lifting a given weight 30 times. With 5x5, assuming you can lift the weigth every time, you're getting only 25 reps, but with much heavier weight.
As heavy training recruits a lot of type IIa fibers, this should lead to hypertrophy, if done properly and in the presence of a caloric surplus. Hope this helps.