T Nation

Had it being small...

Okay I’ve been on T-dog 2.0 for a while now, about 7 weeks. I’m 6’4", and 192/193lbs. I’m a freaking pole. I still have fat on my stomach, and a little on my sides. I don’t want to get down to like 185lbs before I see abs, I would look like a twig, even more so than now.

I wanna start bulking and lifting heavy w/ OVT, and eating big. I also want to start taking creatine. So what I say is I’m probably close to 12-14% BF, is that okay to gain a sufficient muscle:fat ratio? Meaning I will put on more muscle than fat.

If yes, I’m going to start monday. I also would like suggestions on a good creatine to start taking. Thanks again.

wait about 2 weeks before gaining. Since you are in a hypocaloric state, your body will hoard the calories you put in if you eat big right away. Gradually eat more. As for being a pole, take the same amount of fat% that you have now and add 20 lbs, and you’d look a helluva lot better. Just think 220 at 10% bf or 190 at 10% bf. Which looks better?

I always get a crack out of those who insist they can estimate one’s body fat % by looking at them.

‘Probably close to 12-14%’, but just as likely 19% or 11%. Different people have a higher tendency to store fat in certain areas of their body than others do.
My supra-illiac measurement is 6 mm, and my abdominal is 8 mm. Not vascularly ripped by any means, but lean enough to see a 6 pack. By visually assessing my abdominal region I could guestimate my BF % to be 9%, but I would be completely disregarding the highest measurments which are my pec, subscap, mid-thigh, triceps. My abdominal region gives the leanest measurements, and trying to conclude a definite BF leel based on these would be a big mistake.
Further measuring reveals I have:

Triceps: 12mm
Subscap: 10 mm
Pec: 10 mm

According to different formulas using these same exact same measurements, my body fat ranges from 9.6% to 12.1% to 13% to 17.6%. Bottom line is, even with an exact number, dont rely on a percentage too heavily, but rather on an exact number measured at each point.

Still, your big mistake is assuming you can tell what your body fat may be without an exact measurement, when the truth is even with an exact measurement it’s pretty hard to establish your exact BF %.

JWright, assuming the poster’s assumption is correct and has a BF% of 12-14%, you lead him to fantasize about some magic land where he can gain 28 lbs of lean muscle without due consideration to fat gain implications.

The truth is, the higher your body fat %, the higher the fat/muscle gain ratio.
I agree completely with the opinion of many authors including Charles Poliquin and Ian King, that one should bring bf% levels lean numbers prior to bulking.

Assuming he does gain 28 lbs of mass, if all goes beautifully well, he can expect a gain of 8 lbs of fat. His body fat would be 4% higher, or up to 18%. HOWEVER, his starting body fat levels would be 14% which is not exactly ideal. Also, since this isnt fantasy land, and given his assumed bodyfat percentage levels, he could expect more than 8 lbs fat gain. That means his ending bf% will likely be higher than the 18% - maybe as high as 19-20%.

Again, this is a far cry from the 220 lbs at 10% bf you preach of. 9-10% means 18-20 lbs of fat to lose, not involving the invariable muscle loss one has to endure, even if minimal. A 20/80 muscle/fat loss is a good ratio, which means an additional 5 lbs would be lost, meaning he would need to lose 25 lbs to be at 10%. This also does not involve the invariable water loss which comes in the first 1-2 weeks of dieting down, which usually accounts for at least 2-3 lbs of weight lost. If I factor this into our number, he’ll need to lose 28 lbs as a general ballpark.

This puts him at 192 lbs and 10% bf. He will have gained an additional 8 lbs of muscle mass, but still very far away from 220 lbs at 10%.

Ye, results may be much better than predicted here, but I think my point is made. Just because one wants to bulk does not mean you should make decision based on emotion. I can appeal to anyone with thoughts of being 220 lbs 10% bf. However, that will put the individual in a mode where they want to rush into it headlong, and do it the wrong way.

He has a legitimate concern, and you completely ignored his point JWright.

Infinity, who cares what the percentage is? I mean really, I can feel for you since I too had been “cutting” for a long time and was tired of it, and didnt want to become a skinny twig.

It is interesting though to see how diesel’s fat is placed out vastly differently than someone like myself. My measurements are almost opposites of his, im a whopping 3mm pec, 5mm tri, 8mm thigh and 20mm abs. So abs are long gone, yet I can see the muscle move across the upper pec when I flex them.

I agree with JWright, just go back up to maintenance cals for a few weeks Infinity then increase from there.

Good way i’ve found is to start adding more cals to breakfast and post workout, and add a little bit to every other meal.

With your height it’s going to take a lot of mass to really show, but you also have the “bargain” where you can add some fat with that mass and it wont detract from it. I’m 6’2" and see the same thing pretty much.


I’m not basing my 12-14% on just fiction. I was 17.7% on August 11th. I have been on the diet since August 6th, or there abouts. So for about 5-6 weeks after the 17.7% BF mark, is where I’m at today. I have lost considerable fat, I feel. I will get my BF redone I guess. Thanks for opinions, I’m going to keep cutting till I’m at 10%, liek I previously had stated as my goal.

Diesel, you missed MY point. I wasn’t saying get to 220 at 10%. I was saying that a person with more muscle at the same bf% that a person with less muscle has just looks better. I know all the science behind gaining and the ratios compared to higher bf %.

My whole point was to not say “go for it!! get to 220 at 10%!!” It was to say that if you choose to gain mass, don’t jump in headlong right away. Eat at maintenance caloric levels for a few weeks so your body can get used to the extra calories, then slowly bump up the cals, then start your gaining phase. In no way did I mean that he has to achieve the numbers I said, as they were just examples.

You seem to misread a lot of my posts.


I think you should read the “Time to get some MASS” thread that Patricia started a while back. Having been a beanpole before, too (135 lbs. @ 6 ft), I can understand your concerns about not wanting to get too much fat (esp. after having meticulously taken it off with T-Dawg).

One thing I have learned from training the past 8 years of so, is that muscle is the hard part, cutting out the fat is the easy part. It takes hard work in the gym, and hard work with the fork, to gain good, quality muscle. For me, it is not really that hard to cut. 2 weeks of hard dieting can get me down to see my 6-pack, since my body’s set point is around 15% (I rarely go over 15%-16% no matter how bad I eat).

If you go in with the mentality: “I don’t want to lose my abs and all the hard work I put into cutting,” then your bulk will not go well. It will either be short-lived or short-changed in results by a lack of eating.

When you bulk, if you go high in calories, expect a little bloating to occur. This is just a retention of water which accompanies an increase in calories. If you go low in calories one day, you will lose much of the bloat. But some days, when I’m bloated, I look like a whale! The next day, I’ll be back to my semi-ripped self. I made the mistake a few years back of stopping a good bulking stage when I felt like I started looking too “bloated” and fat, not realizing that much of it was only temporary.

When bulking, just focus on packing on the mass, eat clean, but eat a lot. After a while of locking in the gains (with slightly above maintenance calories), then it’s time to cut again. Cutting is the easy part. Trust me.

Not saying you should bulk now, since you already said that you’d keep dieting until down to around 10%. But my personal opinion is that you should pack on some muscle. 6’4" and 193 lbs. shows that you are in need of LBM.

I’m currently 205 lbs. @ 6 ft. tall. Going to try for 225 lbs. Currently bulking, and it’s going well. If you need any advice or further info., feel free to PM me.

I weighed myself today at the gym, 189lbs. I have very little fat anywhere but my obliques and stomach. Nearly gone from chest, thighs etc. I’m going to get my BF% taken again. I feel very thin but I still have a roll around my mid section if I sit down/bend over. That has to go. I wanna see some abs before I lose them again.

Have you ever seen abs infinity?

If so, keep going, they should return.

If you are like me and have never seen them, then you may need to accept that it will take a long time to show them.

Yah I should probably rephrase that. I don’t wanna start to bulk before I see them, as then I’ll be even further from seeing them again. I’ve spent 8 weeks on this diet, I’ll be damned if I’m going to bulk up w/o having seen some abs first =)

dude why the hell were you on t-dawg in the first place? I’ve been bulking for a year now and remain the same bf the whole time, about 15%. Just fucking eat and lift big. You can worry about getting cut when your 260, 15%.

Because I was told it’s better to bulk when your BF is low, that way you put on a better muscle:fat ratio. 10lbs of weight at 20% BF might be 5 fat, and 5 muscle, where as at 10% it might be 8 muscle and 2 fat.

Oh, there is a formula now hehe. Look into Cw’s and CT’s programs they worked nice for me, also being a tall former skinny bastard.

Just one thing to warn you about infinity, and that is not everyone gains mass that cleanly.

I think the theory you are going by may work best if those percentages are what your body normally sets itself to, but they may not hold true for someone who recently acheived that BF level.

Also another thing to note on the mass cycle is the bloat. Initially when you ramp up the calories you may bloat somewhat, and that will make you look smoother even though you really arent that much fatter. It’s sorta deceiving, made me take out my calipers a few extra times just to be sure I wasnt missing something.