T Nation

Building Strength While Staying in a Weight Class


I gain fat incredibly easy, and have a hard time taking it off. I want to compete in powerlifting, but I don't want to be a fatty. I was wondering what approaches people take to trying to stay within certain weight class limits while upping their total in the off season. Say I compete every 4 months or so, and I want to up my total everytime, should I gain 10 pounds and then lose it while trying to hold onto the increased strength? or should I just go for a slow bulk with minimal weight gain? I was thinking about going for a sort of slow bulk with an eat stop eat style fast once a week to help minimize the fat. It's really ridiculous, at only 2500 calories a day my weight starts shooting up. I've always had trouble with obesity though as I used to be almost 300 pounds, now I'm around 180 and would like to stay there until I feel it would be neccessary to really move up a weight class. Just looking for any advice or tips on what others do. I don't care about getting super low bodyfat with abs and stuff, I just want to not be fat, and be as strong as possible.


carb cycling, and everyday push the prowler/hill sprints/whatever. your metabolism wil be through the roof.


try 'leangains', im using it to loose a lot of fat and im still gaining strength


Ever tried GVT or anything where you pump up the volume? I know its not the ideal powerlifting routine, but I'm asking this because if you pump up the volume, you may pump up your metabolism.


I did it in the past for a few months for cutting weight, but I might just try it for bulking if I start gaining too much fat.


It sounds like you need to get your diet dialed in. You say things like slow bulk and eat stop eat and they don't even really mean anything. If you want to get strong, don't fast. Ever.

You are focusing on all the wrong things. You gain weight at 2500 calories a day? Are you eating 2500 calories of fruit loops? Calories mean nothing. I lost 51 lbs in 15 weeks eating upwards of 4000 calories a day. I was also training my ass off and progressively increasing cardio. And, it was 4000 calories of food so clean it would make a normal person kill themself

You need a plan. Not just a collection of a bunch of words you read in some internet article/in some bb.com assholes training log. Buy a book on nutrition, read and learn th entire thing, then fucking eat it.


Any book reccomendations Storm?


I can certainly understand where your thoughts are coming from. I'm not exactly eating fruit loops though haha. I think that I just spent such a long time trying to lose weight that everything got too low, and now I'm stuck trying to make it better. I found it incredibly hard to lose weight towards the end, and now my weight goes up super fast. These are lessons learned though. My diet is pretty clean I'd say. Things like tuna, chicken, eggs, and ground turkey make up a huge part of my diet. I don't think everyone can get away with 4000 calories a day, or at least not at first. I just started a training log, so I guess I'll see how things play out and keep adjusting as neccessary. I was just looking for some advice, since I've never had a bulk in my training career, and it's pretty scary for me being a former morbidly obese person.


I see what you are saying. If you really are serious though, you need to get as educated as you can about the entire nutrition aspect of training. There is only so much that can be suggested over an internet forum. Really good reads: Power Eating and Nutrient Timing. Those pretty much cover everything.

Also, I would suggest looking into some consultations. Shelby Starnes (who set-up my diet) knows his shit and will get you to wherever you want to go. His site is Troponinnutririon.com. John Keifer has gotten a couple guys really big, strong, and leaner with his programs. I know these will seem kinda pricey but the information you learn, you will be able to use for the rest of your life.

At the very least, get Shelby's book: Macronutrient Guidebook from Elitefts.com. It is awesome and very simply lays out how to set up a carb cycling diet. All you do is fill in the blanks based on your goals.


I wasn't aware that Shelby had an actual book, I will have to check that out for sure.