T Nation

Bulking: How Much & What Needs Work

Hey guys,

I haven’t really “bulked” ever besides over the summer when I had no idea what i was doing and just ate like a maniac and lifted a lot (Thankfully i was 142lbs and could deal with the fat gain)

I’m currently ~156-159lbs (i have no reliable scale and it varies depending on water etc)

my #'s are pretty low and just guestimates, strength is not my priority but:

Bench: ~210
Military press: ~120
Deadlift: ~200-210
Squat: ~225

In short, what do you guys think needs work physique wise (BESIDES OVERALL MASS)? I want to be around 10% BF. I tried cutting when i was at 155 but I lost a fair bit of muscle and realized I wouldnt get cut without a bigger muscle base. I think another 5lbs of muscle would be good and then I can start cutting.

Any feedback/criticism is much appreciated.


-pictures following:




last but not least arms

Please note that none of the above pictures are flexed (except this one with the bicep).

Putting on 5 lbs and then cutting will leave you unchanged to the naked eye!

Gonna need to know what your diet and training looks like.

maybe 10lbs then :smiley:

diet is currently:

Supplements: Whey, fish oil, creatine (glutamine, which i wont be continuing once i finish the container I have)

Lifting days:

Calories: 25-2700
protein: 300-320g
carbohydrates: 250-300g

~6 meals per day
morning: carbs(oatmeal, whole wheat bread etc)+protein (protein shake cottage cheese, omelette)

Lunch: protein+veggies+carbs (same as above with some meat protein like ham or tuna)

Pre Workout- Carbs+protein - (fruit, same carbs as above and meat protein)

post workout, protein shake+creatine - carbs+protein (simple carbohydrates, complex carbs, meat, cottage cheese, eggs)

dinner-> carbs+fats+veggies (green veggies, fatty meat or fish, or chicken and walnuts etc)

night-> protein+fat (cottage cheese and nuts or some lactose free cheese or beef jerky and nuts etc)

Fish oil @ every meal

Non Lifting Days:

Calories: ~2200-2300
Protein: 250-300g
Carbohydrates: ~120-150g

same deal as above just that I only have 2 carbohydrate meals (breakfast and post workout) same foods for the most part

Fish oil @ every meal

my training is very roughly:

M: Judo

T: Chest/back/traps/Arms-
(rotate either 3x6-8 or 6-8x3 sets) also do at least 2 of the following (alternating during the week).
Chest: Flat Bench, Incline Bench, cable/dumbbell flies.
Back: Pull ups, Chin ups, lat pulldown, Traps: shrugs, barbell vertical lift
Arms: Weighted dips, close grip bench press, barbell curls, seated curls, supinated curls,

W: Judo

TR: Shoulders/Legs/Arms
Legs: squats, deadlifts, calf raises,
Shoulders: Arnold Presses, deadlifts, standing military press, lateral raises, rear delt raises,
Arms: 2 of the exercises i didnt do on chest/back day

F: Cardio -> HIIT bike, HIIT, Stairclimber, HIIT run (3:1 ratio normal-> sprint)


Sun: Chest/Back/Arms

If it were up to me I wouldn’t have judo but i’ve already made the commitment until april so it forces me to squish in my 3 lifts a week.

I try to pack as many compounds as possible into the workout and do the isolation arm stuff at the end. I also log all my lifts to ensure that im doing progressively more total poundage every week.

I know you said BESIDES overall mass… but that really is what you need, bud. And as another poster said, 5 lbs of muscle then a cut will leave you relatively unchanged. Go for 25-30 pounds of muscle and a cut. (warning- this may involve making lifting a lifelong endeavor rather than a three month hobby!)

double your calories and train harder

I’ve been “lifting” for around 2 years, probably about 6 months knowing what I was doing.

guess I’ll just have to bulk up :),

any recommendations on my program?

Your program sucks.

5 or 10 lbs isn’t going to look any different, try to gain 30 and then see where you want to go from there.

Strength may not be your priority but get stronger. Don’t just lift for a pump or only train your mirror muscles, get stronger everywhere.

Find a program that trains your whole body appropriately. (HINT: Use the search function)

Eat more than you eat now. I don’t eat that few calories when losing fat, let along gaining. My 5’9" 150lbs ectomorph friend eats at least 3500 calories a day.

Just keep learning and you’ll get there. Now go eat.

eat for a year and train hard.

btw if you can deadlift 210 and bench press 210 then you have some major imbalances. i can barely bench 210 and can deadlift almost 400

[quote]lordstorm88 wrote:
eat for a year and train hard.

btw if you can deadlift 210 and bench press 210 then you have some major imbalances. i can barely bench 210 and can deadlift almost 400[/quote]

and your military press sucks.

my deadlift form is god awful and i’ve never actually tested my max. But yes i do have massive strength imbalances, given that i just started deadlifting about 2 months ago.

as for the “eat more” comments, I’m an ectomorph and ffb, so i really dont want to go that much higher than 25-2700cals/day

as long as your lifts are going up then there isnt much of a reason to eat more, but if they arent, do so if you are only eating 2500 cals…

[quote]Octane wrote:
as for the “eat more” comments, I’m an ectomorph and ffb…[/quote]

? Maybe I am missing something, but these two things do not combine to equal not eating as much. If you are an “ectomorph” (I don’t really like classifying somotypes) then you MUST eat more. Even if you are a “FFB” (another term I fear is used too much and as a bit of a crutch) if you aren’t gaining weight, or haven’t gained weight, you MUST eat more in order to do so. It really is that easy. That may mean just 200 more cals a day.

What do you mean by FFB? For how long were you “fat” and how “fat” were you? I ask because a lot of people who have no business calling themselves FFB’s have used it as an excuse to not eat enough to grow.

step 1: Read a Dave Tate food log (current, not the pop tart one) adopt it.

step 2: Google " Westside for skinny Bastards"

Step 3: Get er’ Done.

you’re welcome

ok to CJK i am an ENDOMORPH as in I gain weight (fat) very easily, FFB as in i was 5"10, ~ 178-185lbs, and while the numbers may not indicate actual fatness I was definitely pretty “Husky” from ages 13-17.

Perhaps i have a calorie-phobia from always being used to being the “fat kid” and don’t get me wrong i love to eat more, but im just afraid of gaining a bunch of fat that i’ll have to spend months dieting off again.

If I could just eat whatever I wanted w/o any weight gain, trust me I’d be eating 24/7, unfortunately thats not the way my body works.