Bulking While Training in Martial Arts

I am on the first week of a 6 week bulking phase. I don’t generally bulk, but I’ve lost some size + strength from a shoulder injury and I’m trying to rebuild myself.

My question is - where should I fit in my combatives training? I usually do it after weights so it serves as a cardio session but now I’m trying to GAIN size so I’m going for the post-workout food immediately after lifting.

Would it be best to do it in the A.M. on an empty stomach? After breakfast? Should I just have a shake after the weights and keep practicing in the evening?


My get back in shape go do a bjj tourney after 8 weeks following a year off from any activity plan

AM: 20 min cardio, Lift full body circuits
6 moves 4 sets 8-15 reps 1 min rest between cycles. Or two 4 move circuits for more bulk.
Afternoon: more cardio

Result: 25lbs fat loss, 15lbs muscle gain

Eat: Cereal before I leave for the gym. 16 oz juice pre workout (usually on the treadmill)
Another 16 oz juice after with scoops of protein powder. This combo keeps your glycogen up up up. So you can train hard

Then I eat every few hours all day long.

Depends which is more important to you. Lifting or combatives. Also are you so sore from one or the other that your performance in one affects the other.

prioritize according to what you esteem the most.

Also at least have a protein shake in the morning, if you can have some L-tyrosine or Power Drive with it.

If you have to train combatives IMMEDIATELY after lifting, I would have a shake of carbs (waxy maize probably) and BCAA’s (like 20-30grams) after your lifting session just to keep my blood saturated with muscle building essentials. And THEN have your large post workout protein shake and meal at the end the final training session.

If you can train in the A.M. try to be awake at least 2-3 (best if 4 I believe) hours before hand. It’s hard to motivate your body to move after you just get out of bed. It’s entirely possible but not exactly optimal. You can have some caffeine b4 hand but you’ll eventually reach a point of diminishing returns where you’re nervous system is so used to be revv’d up b4 lifting that you can’t hype yourself up to lift without caffeine. It’s a physical response that can be detoxed but most of the damage will come psychologically. you’re used to a feeling gained from caffine… kinda like a coke-fiend.

So not the best idea often times.

Also since that is going to be like maybe 3 hrs of training a good electrolyte supplement would be in the order to keep you hydrated and from cramping. www.Traceminerals.com has a large selection of shit and its pretty reasonable. Be sure to stay really fucking hydrated while you’re training.

if at all possible, i’d separate the sessions though by at least 5hrs. and get a nap in between. get ear plugs, an eye shade, really comfortable, lay down for 20-30min even if you don’t fall asleep just get used to shutting down for a bit.

If you had a shoulder injury, there is no need to “bulk.” Just eat right and train hard. Muscle memory will take care of the rest.

Awesome advice. Thanks.

In terms of priority, I’d say getting my strength and size back is my priority, especially since I’m only doing that for 6 weeks.

I know what you mean about being fully awake in the morning. I tried going to the gym in the mornings for a while (long enough to reset my sleep cycle) and I simply could not train as hard as I do in the evenings. Simply could not focus enough.

In terms of schedule, training after lifting would be the easiest since I’m already at the gym, already in training mode, etc. I might try the carb/amino shake like you suggested.

Sheesh… as a forum newb, I already hate following up Xen and CaliforniaLaw!

I “bulked” once in conjunction with training… It was awful… I had to re-learn somethings, my anaerobic conditioning, and over all ability to maintain the fight went to hell…

I’d second Xens post, and only add, be careful bro.


Start bulking (clean), add training slowly according to recovery ability.

If you’ve been out of the sport for a bit due to the injury, you should look at it the same way you did when you first started training combat sports.

Assuming you’ve already finished your physical training regiment, after the surgery, you should have the basic speed and flexability necessary to start slowly with your combat sports.

Doing this will most definately help you increase strength and mobility, but work back into it slowly. Once you reach a comfort level, you can start adding in additional strength and bulking regiments… SLOWLY.

This will give you the chance to let your body become conditioned to the extra rigors of both lifting AND combat sports, slowly over time… and, before you know it, you’ll be bigger, meaner, faster, stronger than you ever were before.

Too much, too soon will only end up putting you into a recession and a longer lasting injury/recovery.

[quote]Xen Nova wrote:
try to be awake at least 2-3 (best if 4 I believe) hours before hand. [/quote]

According to Poliquin and CT, 3 and 11 hours after waking is optimal. Three hours after waking is when cortisol peaks, so you have the most available energy for your workout, and 11 hours is when the neurological system learns motor patterns most effectively.

^interesting, I just kinda did that according to when i feel best. Makes sense though somewhere in that area.

and fucking LMAO @ your avatar that shit is brilliant