T Nation

Bodyfat % not to exceed

Whats the general consensus about how high to let yourself get or what bodyfat percentage to just NOT exceed before you shave it off. for example bulk to 12 and diet to 8, repeat until huge? im just not sure to hit it hard for a bit or shave some off first. 6 footer/220/chest 7mm/iliac 14mm/abs 20mm. vascular arms and a couple in my calves and can see my upper abs. which way do i go?

I was kinda wondring this myself. I have always been able to see my six pack when I flexed but now I have to flex pretty hard to see a 4 pack. I’m feeling like an absolute fat ass! I was hoping to hit 215 before I started to diet off the fat but I’m at 204 now and starting to rethink this strategy. April 1st is my cut off date. At the rate that I’m going I’ll hit 215 but does anyone think that I should diet down a bit now and then resume gaining or should I continue until April? My goal for the time being is 195 and really lean. After that I know I will shoot for 205.

Good question. I’ve been struggling with this one for a while. I’ve been on a mass cycle for a few months and definitely added some good lbm but my bf has climbed up from <13% (not good) to over 15% (worse). I’ve asked a couple of guys at my gym who compete about whether I should start cutting or keep gaining and they insist that I should gain another 10-15lb (190 now @ 5’10") before even considering it. They believe in bulking way up first (i.e. bulk to 260, cut to 215 to show). It really bugs me cause I can feel my hidden abs and would love to bring the little fuckers to the surface for a peek.

I say never get above 11-12% bodyfat. The more fat you have, the more testosterone your body converts into estrogen, plus when you are at high bodyfat levels you look and feel like shit.

Lipo and Deniz: Sorry to probably add ANOTHER question to this post, but do you think that it matters whether or not anabolics are being used? The top level “natural??” guys will tell you to never go much above your contest weight and BF percentage, (which would mean hovering around 8-12% or so)while the “non-natural??” guys will advocate these huge swings in body weight and fat percentages as part of a normal bulking cycle. I tend to agree with the former, but I clearly don’t have an answer,just more questions. (Sorry guys!).

Hey T-folk. I’ve had the same problem in the past… set a cutoff date, only to turn into the marshmellow man well before that date. Even now I have to crunch hard to get a 4 pack… [sobs] I’d say to continue bulking to your cutoff date “while you’re still making good LBM gains”. I know it’s a pain in the @ss, and it does make you feel like sh!t, but remember it’s only temporary.