- Thanks for the great feedback everyone! The concensus leads me to believe that I had my calories dialed-in almost perfectly.
To answer the questions posed:
1) What was your starting point BF%? Had you been cutting before this, and if so, for how long?
On the final night immediately before the bulking cycle, I was 158 lbs.; 4.5% BF; (height: 5’ 8.5"). For 3-4 weeks prior to the cycle, I was using Chad Waterbury’s “Anti-Bodybuilding Hypertrophy Program” (issue 244). - During that time, I was taking in probably about 2400 calories (maintenance is ~2200). It’s also worth mentioning that during that 3-4 week pre-bulk period, my body composition didn’t seem to change even slightly. - (Don’t misconstrue that last statement as a knock against Chad’s routine; while I certainly was going balls-out, the mere 200 calories above maintenace undoubtedly limited me. - That being said, I also suspect that that specific program isn’t quite advanced enough for me because I never even came close to breaking a sweat, and soreness was virtually non-existant.)
2) What is your weight, and what is your BF now?
On the evening of bulking day 14, I was 173 lbs.; 6.7% BF.
3) Were you taking any aids to success?
This bulking cycle was the very first time I used Mag-10. - Prior to this, I had never touched any sort of prohormone, AAS, or pro-steroid.
Specifically, other than the 1st day front-load, I took 1/2 serving (1/2 scoop) of M10 twice daily (around 5am and 5pm). I followed the Growth Surge Project part II for my training and did go with the 2-a-day training sessions (waking up and training at 5am; getting on the road by 7; working 8-4; getting home and training at 5pm; trying like hell to get to bed by 9pm; repeat).
For the sake of completeness, other supplements included: Multivitamin (2x day), B-multivitamin (2x day), glucosamine & chondroitin, 500mg vit. C (3x day), chromium picolinate (200mcg, 3x day), and Mag/Zinc/B6 before bed.
My diet followed the Massive Eating calculations (and I tweaked them slightly). - I went with 4000 calories (310g pro; 102g fat; 460g carb) per training day and non-training days were slightly lower because of not using 2 servings of Surge. Those calories were divided into 6 meals (not counting the 2 servings of Surge), and I always had a protein shake sometime during the night (I usually wake up briefly at around 2-3am). My diet (for the last few years actually) is mainly eggs, brown rice, whey protein, flax/olive/primrose oils, spinach, lettuce, tuna, “sprouted-grain” bread, and Surge/equivalent. – Hmm… That’s actually a 100% complete list!
Currently, between cycles, I’m using Joel Marion’s 5x5 training, Tribex, and 3200 calories (3500 on training days).
As long as Mag 10 is being mentioned, I have to say that, despite the gains on the scale, I was rather underwhelmed with it… Frankly, I just didn’t really feel any different (in the gym or out). - Reading this last paragraph back to myself, it really seems like an absurd thing to say: “I gained 11 lbs. of muscle, but I was underwhelmed”. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that up until I took my day-14 measurements, I hadn’t thought that the Mag 10 had done anything! - Strange how that worked out; I suppose this is just a testiment to the importance of taking careful measurements to track progress… Although… I wish I could go back in time and see how things wouldn’ve turned out had I passed on the M10…