I plan on doing my first cycle withing the next few months yet I do not really know how to approach it. I currently stand at 5’11 ~202 lbs. My BF is low yet unknown, I have visible abs not deeply cut tho (I would guess my BF 10-12%). My goal after the cycle is to be big and lean +215 lbs with ~7% BF.
Should I lean down now naturally to the 7% and than cycle or do I keep gaining size and strength and gear and diet while on? Thanks. If im over thinking the situation let me know.
There’s a saying that there are no unrealistic expectations, just unrealistic time frames.
I’d take a more long term view of things. I’m sure you didn’t arrive at over 200 and (decently) low bf% in any short time, and, now that you are on the other side of the bell curve, you should not expect to reach your next goal in a phenomenally short amount of time, either. That certainly does not mean you should not expect to reach your goal.
Just that plans formulated a year or two in advance generally have a much higher success rate than the same plan formulated three to six months ahead.
The advice is repeated ad nauseum on this site for a reason: in most cases it is correct. You will have an easier time of things by getting as big as you need to be (I don’t mean going above your current bf%, either) by focusing upon growth. Then, in a subsequent cycle (or two), you can focus upon maintaining everything while you strip off all of the excess fat.
My guess would be that if you dieted down now you would lose some of the muscle gains you’ve naturally made, and the AAS would be “wasted” in replenishing those gains, instead of creating brand new ones.