T Nation

How Much Lean Muscle Mass Can be Achieved from 1st Cycle


I know that everyone is different. I know that all steroids are different. I’m just trying to get a rough estimate of how much muscle can be gained so that I can make my meal plan and determine the calorie surplus that would maximize my results without me missing out on gains or adding extra fat. I’ve read to only go on a 450 calorie surplus daily. But for me that would mean on my 11 week cycle I could hope for 22lbs of lean mass(assuming it takes 1600 calories to build a lb of muscle). Is that number exaggerated, is that number low or is it spot on for this cycle?

Went to the doctor yesterday and my stats are 6’
175lbs 10% bf

The cycle I will be running is Weeks 1-4 dbol 50 mg ED split into two doses

Weeks 1-11 test e 250mg E3D

Weeks 1-12 HCG 250iu E3D

Weeks 1-13 arimidex .5mg EOD

Weeks 14-20 nolvadex 40/40/40/20/20/10 ED

Weeks 14-16 clomid 50mgED

Also when would I start maintenance to keep my gains. During pct or after. I would assume that keeping that 450 calorie surplus after coming off pct would result in only fat gain seeing as I shouldn’t theoretically be able to gain more lean muscle mass if I pushed past my natty limit on cycle. Is that thinking correct?


I dont know how many calories you need to gain X amount of muscle but I do know that at 1 gram of Test a week plus Dbol, your protein synthesis is going to be WAY above anything you now have. I personally would force feed myself and focus on the big compound lifts through the whole cycle. I dont see any reason why you couldnt gain at least 25 lbs over a 12 week period. Your BF may go up but not to the point where it hides your gains.


Tell us a little bit more about yourself
Your age. How long you’ve been lifting and what kind of gains you’ve been able to make semi-consistently after you’ve past the "newbie gains stage"
Typically guys who do not fully understand progressive overload, intensity cycling, rest / recovery and the value of good nutrition to make natty gains don’t do very well on cycle and assume their gear is bunk. IF they do make gains they are very quick to lose them
I think you’re making too much by trying calculate out exact maintenance levels plus how many surplus calories to gain each pound of muscle while on this proposed cycle; which is quite a bit of Test for a very 1st cycle


I made a mistake When writing it I am taking 500 a week 250mg E3D

I’ve been working out for 10 years

Like I said I’m 175 at 10% bf so I would assume I’m way past the natty gains stage

It’s very hard for me to gain much more lean mass with proper diet and training without raising my bf coniderably


I’m a bit confused by you. You ever so slightly lumped me in with people who don’t know how to proper train and eat by saying

“Typically guys who do not fully understand progressive overload, intensity cycling, rest / recovery and the value of good nutrition to make natty gains don’t do very well on cycle and assume their gear is bunk”

And them go on to tell me I’m doing too much by trying to count my calories and track my macros for muscle gain while not exceeding it too much to gain fat. Seems to me like you just wanted to talk down to someone instead of help or was just turned off bc I misrepresented my cycle on accident bc I made a typo and wanted to flame my question about what you called “good nutrition” previously.


Whoa, you’re a little sensitive. Lol
You’re mistaken. I don’t care if you’ve made a typo. You should re-read your work before submitting it to multiple people asking for help tho. ALOT of people will read your post and Everyone sees some new guy posting a 1,000mg/wk very 1st cycle and prob moved on

Also, at 6’ tall and only 175lbs I hardly doubt you’ve tapped out your natty gains and hit your genetic limit. I was asking about “newbie gains”. Those are where it doesn’t matter if you fuck everything up as long as you just get in the gym you make gains

10yrs to get to only 175lbs at 6’ doesn’t sound very effective or that you do fully understand progressive overload for Hypertrophy and the importance of a caloric surplus to gain weight.

BTW - you didn’t say how old you are. You also didn’t answer what kind of gains you’ve been able to make

How much muscle have you add in the last 12months just to keep things simple?


I’m just giving you my opinion. You don’t need to take it

I said you’re making to much with your micro calculations because you said you wanted to plan out your nutrition based on your proposed cycle so you could gain 22lbs

No one knows their exact “maintenance” calories and that “X” amount of calories will yield so many gains. Your metabolism changes daily

Most guys will use a specific formula as a reference and play with adjusting calories and protein / fat / carb ratios to gain, lose or change body composition. That takes time and experimenting.

You’re talking about cycling and creating an exact nutrition plan to specifically gain 22lbs. Not 20-25lbs, but 22lbs. So, yes! You are micro planning.


You’re incorrect In almost everything you said. 1 I clearly asked for a rough estimate and stated I know that everyone is different and it’s impossible to know exactly. 2. Using a lean body mass calculator with the formula being (Your Height in Inches -70) x 5 + 160 = Maximum LBM
I’m off my genetic potential by 12.5 lbs. being that I’ve been training for 10 years it would take me 3-4 years with correct diet and training every day with no sickness or injury to reach those number and am just looking to get over a hump. Considering that I was 130 when I started and only about an inch in a half shorter I would assume I’m not far off with that formula or how long it would take me to add 12.5 more pounds at the same body fat. 3. the best way to get there is to know what I’m eating and how much along with proper training. As I have never used gear before I was curious about the calories many of you guys have eaten and with what results. But you are right about one thing I should have checked my work twice before submitting it. But I’m not interested in you critiqueing my routine or my diet which you critiqued for being too calculated. Just wanted your experience with steroid use and dieting. Thanks for all of your help though. :smile:


Alright, alright. I’m trying to shed some perspective on you and you’re hell bent on these micro calculations

You’ve determined it takes 1600 calories above your maintenance levels to build 1lb of muscle but somehow it’ll take 3-4yrs to gain 12.5lbs to hit your genetic limit. (I’ve read it is 2500 calories, but I’ve also read many other numbers so we will use your 1600. Personally I just use it as a rough guide and adjust based on real life experience that I’m trying to pass on to you but nonetheless)

By your calculations you need 20,000 calories above maintenance to gain that 12.5lbs of LBM to hit your genetic limit and that’ll take 3-4yrs to accomplish.

By your math that’s only 13.698 - 18.265 extra calories per day above maintenance. What gives? You propose to eat 450 calories above maintenance when you start your cycle but don’t mention what you’ve been doing up until now

For arguments sake (or for the sake of not arguing rather) let’s use your micro calculations to your advantage. I’m not opposed to accurate data

Count every thing you consume so meticulously that you are within a half calorie each and everyday and pay close attention to how you specifically respond. Do that both while on cycle and off.

It’s taken you 10yrs to gain 45lbs. Not all of that is LBM as it is clear you were going through puberty within the last 10 years as you grew 1-1/2". I’m sure there’s a calculation somewhere to determine skeletal growth minus total mass = LBM gains. I personally don’t know. I’m sure you can find something if you really wanted to fit it into your data

My point is you haven’t seen much growth. You haven’t answered what kind of gains you’ve made over the last year but I’m going to guess it wasn’t much

Now, 6’, 175lbs at 10% may look crazy impressive. You haven’t posted pics. It’s all relative.

IF you put on 10lbs after your cycle, that is HUGE considering. It’s all relative. IF you pack on 22lbs no one will even recognize you including yourself

My point the whole time has been “relative”. For the guys who’d need 3-4yrs to gain as little as 12.5lbs they won’t gain as much on cycle. Of course if you finally decide to eat on cycle you can gain significantly

Again, who cares? You’ve got it all figured out mathematically tho…

So, consume your 450 extra calories the next 11 weeks and see what happens. See if your calculations are right. Maybe they are.

I personally have had the best experience with 500 calories over my theoretical maintenance calories. I gain steadily (natural), don’t get fat, bloated and I don’t dread eating this amount.

After cycle I suggest you pick a calorie amount you want to use and monitor what happens

By your theories. You’ll want to use a maintenance level of calories and expect to rapidly drop 10lbs as you will be above your genetic limit which you cannot maintain off cycle


I started reading your post and was like “Woa, this dude sounds like a huge weiner” and then read that you used a lean body mass calculator to determine your genetic limit and was like “This dude is a wiener!” haha.

I’ll shit a solid brick of gold if you can gain 22 lean lbs in 11 weeks even on gear if you have only been able to crack 175 in ten years of lifting.

Not trying to be a dick here but you were kind of disrespectful to @ToolManSam. He was just trying to be helpful.