I still have some fat to lose, but I was wondering if there was a rule of thumb for switching focus to bulk. Is there a certain body fat % I should be aiming for before I try to gain serious muscle? Or is this just typically personal preference?
What are your goals? If your goal is to gain muscle mass, then why cut?
Bulking only means eating enough that your body actually can build muscle mass, only because it’s much faster not to worry about some excess fat gain along the way while eating enough to build muscle people are usually putting on some fat during bulking phases. (And because fat is really easy to diet off again if you’re training serious and know a little bit about nutrition)
If you still have enough BF (>~12-15%), i would not worry too much about cutting or bulking and simple eat enough protein and eat frequently enough, because the body cannot store amino acids like it can store energy.
Try to eat some protein every ~3 hours and especially before/after your train and before you go to sleep/after you wake up, and you should be fine
I still have some fat to lose, but I was wondering if there was a rule of thumb for switching focus to bulk. Is there a certain body fat % I should be aiming for before I try to gain serious muscle?[/quote]
No. Those BF % numbers don’t mean a thing. They’re interesting to know, but outside of that they are useless. You have a mirror and if you’re worried about fat, then you’re probably training for aesthetics. So use the mirror. If you don’t like what you see, change it. If that number were somehow 5%, would that somehow change your dissatisfaction to peace of mind?
That’s exactly what it is. Having fat is not a tragedy. You are going to accumulate fat WHENEVER you go through a bulking phase. Everyone who does them correctly does so.
Try to find some pictures of Johnnie Jackson after his bulking phase. He was far from contest condition. I’d bulk away NOW if I were you. The gains in muscle you achieve will far outshine whatever fat is still hanging off of you.