T Nation

Bulking on the AD

Something I don’t understand about bulking on the anabolic diet… if the excess cals are coming from fat, why do they not get stored as bodyfat? By what mechanism is the fat converted into lean muscle tissue? I am not doubting the results, I am just curious about the science…

also, another question…

if someone is very lean already, would they have better results “bulking” with a carb-type diet rather than an anabolic type diet, since their insulin sensitivity would be better than those with higher bodyfat?

[quote]skinnymuscles wrote:
Something I don’t understand about bulking on the anabolic diet… if the excess cals are coming from fat, why do they not get stored as bodyfat? By what mechanism is the fat converted into lean muscle tissue? [/quote]

Fat is not converted into lean muscle tissue. Where did you hear this preposterous claim?

Question 1 - your body begins to use fat as a fuel source, so it won’t store them unless the excess is very high. Plus with the lack of carbs your body is not generating frequent insulin spikes to trigger fat storage. You should still be taking in a considerable amount of protein that your body can use to build lean mass.

Question 2 - this is highly individual. If you really are lean you can probably afford carbs in your bulking plan.

Isn’t it much harder to make mass gains on the AD because of the absence of carbs?

if you want the most potential gains and don’t care about fat gains, then you should be eating carbs. Trying to gain mass with the AD is a very slow thing to do, would make better mass gains on a higher carb diet.

I understand why the AD works so well for cutting: you consume under miaintenance cals, use fat as your energy, and avoid insulin spikes.
BUT, while on the AD and in a caloric SURPLUS, most of the calories are going to be coming from fat. SO I realize you avoid the insulin spike, which is a plus. And you are using fat for energy…But when the day is over, you are taking in MORE energy than you are burning, and that energy is most likely extra grams of fat. Why is this not stored preferentially as bodyfat?

[quote]Phate89 wrote:
Isn’t it much harder to make mass gains on the AD because of the absence of carbs? [/quote]

Supposedly, the fats in the AD spike your T-levels, making lean muscle gains even easier than in a classical carb-based bulk. Thus, it’s called the Anabolic Diet.

[quote]Phate89 wrote:
Isn’t it much harder to make mass gains on the AD because of the absence of carbs?

if you want the most potential gains and don’t care about fat gains, then you should be eating carbs. Trying to gain mass with the AD is a very slow thing to do, would make better mass gains on a higher carb diet.[/quote]

[quote]skinnymuscles wrote:
I understand why the AD works so well for cutting: you consume under miaintenance cals, use fat as your energy, and avoid insulin spikes.
BUT, while on the AD and in a caloric SURPLUS, most of the calories are going to be coming from fat. SO I realize you avoid the insulin spike, which is a plus. And you are using fat for energy…But when the day is over, you are taking in MORE energy than you are burning, and that energy is most likely extra grams of fat. Why is this not stored preferentially as bodyfat?[/quote]

Both of you guys are making very uneducated claims. Why not read the 5000+ post AD thread first and then ask questions. I’m fairly sure that once you make it through that you won’t have any questions left.

I’ve never gone through the AD, but i’ve heard from people, including friends that they made better muscle gains when they ate more carbs, they also gained more fat.

A friend was eating over 6000 calories a day on the AD, gaining little to no fat but also gaining muscle very slowly

Then he switched to eating 4000 cals, with a moderate carb diet and he ended up gaining 3x more LBM but more fat.

Just from what i’ve seen the AD is good for cutting, but not necessarily the best for bulking.

[quote]Phate89 wrote:
I’ve never gone through the AD, but i’ve heard from people, including friends that they made better muscle gains when they ate more carbs, they also gained more fat.

A friend was eating over 6000 calories a day on the AD, gaining little to no fat but also gaining muscle very slowly

Then he switched to eating 4000 cals, with a moderate carb diet and he ended up gaining 3x more LBM but more fat.

Just from what i’ve seen the AD is good for cutting, but not necessarily the best for bulking.

[/quote]

Lol… ok. you’re right. The one random experience your friend had (let’s not bother talking about the thousand variables that may have attributed to his results) should easily make us all come to the conclusion that the AD is bad for bulking.

I never said it was bad for bulking, if your scared of gaining fat its probably good for you.

But for the person that wants to make the most gains and isn’t scared by a little fat, they would be better off with carbs.

If you want to make the best possible gains you can, carbs are necessary.

But of course, this is T-Nation and I will probably get crap for dissing the AD, because anyone that eats bread and doesn’t eat a pound of beef a day is a pussy.

[quote]Phate89 wrote:
If you want to make the best possible gains you can, carbs are necessary.[/quote]

This is simply not true and has been proven. I’m also not going to say the opposite because that isn’t true either. It’s very individual and you have to do what works for you. To tell someone that they have to have carbs to make the best gains without knowing anything about them is retarded advice. The world does not work on absolutes. I personally made the best gains in my life while bulking on the AD for almost a year. So should I suggest to people that the AD is the ONLY way to make gains because of my experience? No.

Say things in a smarter way next time.

Thanks for the intelligent reply, thought someone was gonna pop in and say something stupid and flame.

Anyways, care to share the studies that show carbs aren’t neccessarily necessary to make the best gains?

From everything i’ve read, carbs are necessary to transport the nutrients that feed your muscles, etc.

[quote]Phate89 wrote:
Thanks for the intelligent reply, thought someone was gonna pop in and say something stupid and flame.

Anyways, care to share the studies that show carbs aren’t neccessarily necessary to make the best gains?

From everything i’ve read, carbs are necessary to transport the nutrients that feed your muscles, etc.[/quote]

The only thing necessary to shuttle the protein to the muscles is to be in an anabolic state. This is the basis behind the diet. You become fat adapted so that your body sees fat as a fuel source, so even if you are low on calories it can feed off of stored fat (for a short duration) to avoid going catabolic. This is explained much better in book.

You are also asking for an impossible study. You can’t show me a study that says carbs are necessary simply because of what I wrote before that it’s too individual. I’m very carb intolerant. VERY. So I can’t even bulk on a moderate carb diet. If I take in more than 200g of carbs a day I gain fat. Doesn’t matter the carb source. I can easily gain 10lb in less than a week if I want to on less than 5K calories a day. That’s how carb intolerant I am. I don’t gain muscle when bulking with carbs. I’ve put on almost 15lbs of solid lean mass bulking on the AD for the last year, or at least close to it. I’m currently cutting so the bulk has stopped. But I would do it again in a heartbeat (and will later this year).

I’m not basing my opinions soley on myself. I’m basing them on the hundreds of guys in the AD thread who have experienced the same results. If you are an ecto or even a meso and can bulk the best on a moderate or high carb intake- more power to you. I would be jealous.

[quote]lixy wrote:
Phate89 wrote:
Isn’t it much harder to make mass gains on the AD because of the absence of carbs?

Supposedly, the fats in the AD spike your T-levels, making lean muscle gains even easier than in a classical carb-based bulk. Thus, it’s called the Anabolic Diet.[/quote]

The AD works to allow one to retain lean mass, including muscle, while dropping body fat. So, it’s primarily anti-catabolic, as opposed to being “anabolic.”

With the loss in body fat and deliberate ingestion of more dietary fat, preferably an optimal balance of high-quality EFA’s, one will aromatize less and improve androgen production (all other factors being held constant). That will promote anabolism to some extent.

But, the primary benefit of the AD is that it’s an anti-catabolic approach to losing body fat. Bottom-line: If you want to look better, feel better and perform better, the AD works. (Tip: While on the AD, make sure you get ample fiber. I think flaxseeds are a great source.)

I think this is just turning back into a fat loss thread. If you eat in a caloric surplus with the right ratios for the AD, is it a practical way to gain LBM? I for one, don’t expect to gain 5lbs a muscle a week, because I have read enough to know thats physiologically impossible and am not looking to. I think the main question still is, is the AD a good way to GAIN muscle mass.

[quote]ghm wrote:
lixy wrote:
Phate89 wrote:
Isn’t it much harder to make mass gains on the AD because of the absence of carbs?

Supposedly, the fats in the AD spike your T-levels, making lean muscle gains even easier than in a classical carb-based bulk. Thus, it’s called the Anabolic Diet.

The AD works to allow one to retain lean mass, including muscle, while dropping body fat. So, it’s primarily anti-catabolic, as opposed to being “anabolic.” With the loss in body fat and deliberate ingestion of more dietary fat, preferably an optimal balance of high-quality EFA’s, one will aromatize less and improve androgen production (all other factors being held constant). That will promote anabolism to some extent. But, the primary benefit of the AD is that it’s an anti-catabolic approach to losing body fat. Bottom-line: If you want to look better, feel better and perform better, the AD works. (Tip: While on the AD, make sure you get ample fiber. I think flaxseeds are a great source.)[/quote]

Well, reading the Mac Daddy AD thread, I was left with the impression that most people were using it for bulking.

[quote]alaw4516 wrote:
I think this is just turning back into a fat loss thread. If you eat in a caloric surplus with the right ratios for the AD, is it a practical way to gain LBM? I for one, don’t expect to gain 5lbs a muscle a week, because I have read enough to know thats physiologically impossible and am not looking to. I think the main question still is, is the AD a good way to GAIN muscle mass.[/quote]

Although one might initially “bulk up” with the AD by naturally optimizing hormone levels and balance, I think one generally requires more carbs than the AD contemplates to be in a genuine “bulking phase,” even when that means bulking at a physiologically normal pace. A “variation” of the AD that incorporates significant, higher GI carb intake during a workout, and within reasonable proximity thereafter, would make sense for someone trying to bulk up, while also trying to stay lean as possible. The more amount of time that has elapsed since a preceding workout, the lower the carbs GI should be and the lower the overall caloric intake from the carbs should be.

[quote]ghm wrote:
Although one might initially “bulk up” with the AD by naturally optimizing hormone levels and balance, I think one generally requires more carbs than the AD contemplates to be in a genuine “bulking phase,” even when that means bulking at a physiologically normal pace. A “variation” of the AD that incorporates significant, higher GI carb intake during a workout, and within reasonable proximity thereafter, would make sense for someone trying to bulk up, while also trying to stay lean as possible. The more amount of time that has elapsed since a preceding workout, the lower the carbs’ GI should be and the lower the overall caloric intake from the carbs should be. [/quote]

Fail.

Why is it so difficult for you guys to conceive that you can bulk without carbs? Is this something that has been ingrained in you from birth or something? Bottomline- if you are in a caloric surplus, intake a shitload of protein, and work your ass of in the gym you will gain muscle. It’s really that simple. Your body doesn’t give a shit if the surplus calories are fat or carbs just as long as you get a surplus.

Jesus. I’m done. If you don’t get it by now you never will.

[quote]alaw4516 wrote:
I think this is just turning back into a fat loss thread. If you eat in a caloric surplus with the right ratios for the AD, is it a practical way to gain LBM? I for one, don’t expect to gain 5lbs a muscle a week, because I have read enough to know thats physiologically impossible and am not looking to. I think the main question still is, is the AD a good way to GAIN muscle mass.[/quote]

That depends how your body reacts to carbs. if you gain fat very easily, then the AD is probably best for you. If you can handle carbs and not get fat, then you’d probably make your best gains with carbs in your diet.