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Gaining LBM While Holding or Losing BF?


G'day all, bit of a shocker for a first post I think but I couldn't find anything really definitive through the search engine.

Now a little bit about myself, My name's Dave, I'm 17, I'm quite untrained by T-Nation standards, that's not to say I'm a complete newb to lifting, but I'm not exactly experienced by any means either. My main interest lies in combat sports, I love boxing, BJJ, etc.

Anyway, to get to the point, and I know how annoying and frequent question this may be, but is there any known methods of gaining LBM while minimizing or even losing bodyfat?

And I know I'm probably going to get some hate for this but I tried the traditional bodybuilding bulk/cut cycle. I hated it and to be honest, if the maximum amount of muscle we can build a week without Anabolics is about 1.0 lbs, then it would seem to me alot of calories just end up getting stored as fat.

What I'm trying to get is a definitive answer on whether such a method does actually exist. I know the Anabolic Diet has had great success for some, but like many others, muscle growth doesn't happen for me on a ketogenic diet, then again, neither did fat. There were two methods that caught my eye, but I still don't understand one of two.

Thib's calorie/carb cycling mentioned in the "20 pounds of hollywood muscle" was the first one to catch my eye and makes the most sense, but from what I understood, doesn't playing around with the body's metabolism like that just end up causing faster fat gain?

The other method, which I REALLY don't understand was Dr. Beradi's G-flux principle. I still really don't understand the advantages of this over the typical bb'ing principle of increasing calories by 500 over maintenance.

Once again, I'm sorry, I know questions like these probably come along all the time. Any help at all is truly appreciated.


The ability to gain muscle while losing fat without the use of anabolics is a unicorn. When you find it, sell it for a million dollars.

Beginners can fudge this a bit. When you are incredibly untrained, your body adapts severly to the least stimulus, and thus you can gain muscle while staying in a caloric deficit, and losing fat. Don't count on this exceeding the first 12 weeks of your training. It may happen, but don't count on it.

If you tried the AD (which is not a keto diet, although the differences are subtle), and you didn't gain muscle, but you didn't gain fat, it's entirely possible you just weren't eating enough.

The carb cycling in Thib's '20 lbs of hollywood muscle' is explained somewhat clearer in his article 'carb cycling codex', which can be found using the search engine at the top right of this page. It does not involve interfering with the body's metabolism in a way that would increase fat gain later on. Instead, it takes advantage of periods of insulin sensitivity to make the most out of the most anabolic periods.

G-flux is based around anecdotal evidence that people who exercise a great deal tend to have attractive, athletic bodies. More, that a high work capacity and high volume of work (the two go hand in hand, you see...)lead to having higher quality of gains regardless of which way you go (more muscle gained with less fat gained, more more fat lost with less muscle lost).

If this doesn't clear up the misunderstanding, ask more specific questions.


As a beginner to weights you will experience this for a small period of time (a few months) when you start lifting.

You realize that when you add muscle you are effectively losing fat since your bodyweight is increasing and your fat level remaining more or less intact, at least it shouldn't be increasing at the same level as your muscle.

Other than that, steroids will do just that, too.


Thanks for the replies guys. I'm quite sure I'm past the "newbie" gains period, which sucks on one hand.

So I'm guessing the most easiest/effective and easily understood method would be Thib's carb cycling approach? I'm thinking about trying his superhero program with some variations (pullups instead of lat pulldowns for example)


Look harder: http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_training_performance_bodybuilding_beginner/for_those_who_want_to_loose_fat_while_gaining_muscle?id=2438600&pageNo=0

This is highly dependent on the person. Genetics will play a major factor in HOW you gain your weight.

How long did you try this method? Did you maintain in between each of these cycles? (see link above for explanation) My guess is that you bulked to gain a few pounds and then cut it right off.

This has already been answered so I won't beat a dead horse.

From what I remember, carb cycling allows your body to have extra calories/carbs on a day that you need it and less on days that you don't. I did it for 4mo and was able to gain 10lbs and barely any fat.

Read up more on this b/c many people have made great progress on this.

If you know this question comes up all the time, why did you say you couldn't find anything? lol

My guess is that if your new to dieting and weightlifting that you need to get on a better diet and a fixed training schedule. Many new people go from program to program and don't ever give it enough time to produce positive results.

Find a diet, try it for 4+ months and keep track of yourself by measurements, weight and pictures.

Also, find a training program that will help you with your strength goals and stick with that for the same amount of time and keep a workout log.

Good luck!


Thanks for that rock. Just wanting to clarify: Does the carb cycling approach include cutting down calories on lower carb days or do you maintain the same caloric intake just with fats and proteins taking up the majority of the nutrient ratio?