T Nation

I'm Happy That I Dirty Bulked


The everlasting debate: to dirty bulk, or to not dirty bulk.

This seems to be the ongoing debate on these forums for the past... well, forever! We've all heard the common phrases before; You can't gain good muscle if you dirty bulk, It will take you forever to cut off all that fat, hawt abz, etc.

I call bullshit.

I "dirty bulked"(If you even want to call it that) about 1 1/2 years ago, and I DO NOT REGRET IT AT ALL. I pulled a ~500 deadlift, 405 squat for 2 reps, and a 315 bench for one, with long ass arms, and I don't think I would've been able to do it if I didn't eat and eat and eat. I also used thibs pre/post/peri workout protocol with alpha GPC every workout day. I think you can reap the benefits of smart eating by focusing your "dirty" meals immediately before/during/after your workouts. So whats the problem?

Of course everyone's different, some will gain more fat than others, etc. So you don't look as "cut" and your abs aren't as defined. Ok Pauly D, then step aside and kiss all your potential goodbye. But is it really worth it to bulk up as much as you can?


So please please PLEASE stop bitching about not gaining muscle or what feet-on-the-bench, reverse-grip superfly snuka bench press is good to use.


Pre-Bulk stats:
6'3'' - ~ 210 lbs, 15% Bodyfat, 16 inch arms, 24 inch thigh, 36-38 inch waist REALLY SHITTY LIFTS(210 bench 1rm, 315 squat 3rm, 315 deadlift 1rm.)

2009 Post-Bulk Stats:

~1 year of heavy eating and lifting.

6'3'' - 252 lbs, 17% 18.5 inch arms, 26.5 inch thigh, 38 - 40 inch waist GOOD LIFTS(315 bench 1rm PR, 405 squat 1rm, 500 deadlift. First time in my life!)

Current Refinement Stats:

6 months of carb-cycling down to ~8% Bodyfat, 196lbs, Rebound Effect Bulk to NOW:

235 lbs as of Nov 2nd, 2010
11% bodyfat (7 point pinch)
~17.5-18 inch arms
25 inch thigh
~34 inch waist

Current Big 3: Bench - 315 x 2rm (so far), ~500 Deadlift (still), And a new PR squat for me today, 405 2 sets of 2!


So how much does your fatass weigh now?


6 foot 3, ~230 - 235 lbs, and 11% bodyfat. I dieted down for a contest in mid Oct but had to cancel late sept. My leanest was late sept, I was 200 lbs and 7 point pinched at ~8-9% bodyfat.

Thanks! :wink:


Good job.

I think a lot of people, when "bulking":

a) Fuck up their training and don't make the strength gains necessary. Easy to get that wrong though, as just about everything will allow for some kind of gains... Just not necessarily enough.
b) Don't eat enough protein
c) Diet right back down once they consider themselves too fat, without holding their top weight first... And so the body just gets rid of a lot of the muscle it may have gained... Why keep it around?


All I can say is I got so much stronger after I dieted off a good chunk of fat...i can't wait to properly bulk up again. When I say properly I am referring to how my body should be treated, everyone has their own proper way.

Pics before and after? <3



Ya, I'd like some pics too : )


Pics and diet or this thread is worthless, especially when you say, "I "dirty bulked"(If you even want to call it that)" so what does your dirty bulk entail?


I agree. With thibs protocol, i was up to about 150g of whey protein right around my workout alone! 200g of carbs too, and when I started dieting down, i held my weight (252) for a MONTH before i lowered macronutrients.

As for training, I bought into the High Reps for growth mantra when I was younger, and was lucky enough to realize that lower reps were right for me when I bulked up.


I will post pics after my back routine in 10 mins. I'll post before during after.


Interesting, I'm running a dirty bulk periworkout too. Pre workout I also use Alpha Lipoic Acid and it helps give me a better pump. I plan to run a cleaner bulk with lots of blended oats to compare.


Kudos for maintaining that size. I just wanted to mention that a month is certainly not the norm for most folks. In fact, I'd venture to say most should maintain some sort of size/weight for up to a year before cutting back down to trim out the body fat %%'s. Flame me if I'm wrong, but thats what I've picked up from guys like C_C, Way, and others... Just thought that should be mentioned before people start rolling in and claiming they don't need to even hold weight that long.


Wow, a year? I was always told on here only for a couple weeks before dieting, so I thought a month was long.


I think as long as you carb cycle, you can dirty bulk and stay relatively lean ie <15%


Nice stats boss, when I saw the word dirty next to bulk I assumed that meant you were over 15 percent. 230 at 11 is solid! I try to take a middle of the road approach, I'll have some dirty meals and manage to keep my fat at 25% (of daily macros) while bulking.

As a meso, I'm comfortable at 10-12% but I still aim to stay near the single digits. I believe being in the single digits makes contest prep MUCH easier. This year as I bulk I believe I'll incorporate CT's control days 1-2 a week, and keep some low intensity cardio in there.

I'm still learning how my body grows best, if I can reach 215 at 5'10.5 and be under 12% I'll be damn happy! Then I can finally compete at light heavy were I belong.


We've all dirty bulked at some point, it works if you are intelligent about it but many many many more go about it in the most retarded way possible and give it a bad name so I'm never gonna suggest it on this website again.


I think a lot of people that are into the bodybuilding scene have inhibition control problems and/or an "all or nothing" mentality; it's what keeps them training hard.. Unfortunately, for me at least, that all or nothing mindset turned my dirty bulk into an excuse to eat whatever I want, with the single caveat that I'd at least have an alright amount of protein with my food.. I gained a lot of strength, but due to my poor eating habits (such as only eating 2 huge meals a day rather than eating more smaller meals) I also gained a lot of flabby, wobby fat right around my hips... Moral of the story, for me, dirty bulking is something that I'll never do again, I simply don't have the mindset for it.


Wait, why would ANYONE assume that and further, what the fuck is wrong all of a sudden with being 15% body fat?

Further, why would THAT be the primary concern over whether what you are doing is leading to the most muscle growth?

Who the fuck cares if you hit over 15% body fat if you grew more muscle than everyone else?


That isn't even bulking and why are we using this word again?

Dirty means nothing. Everyone has their own definition.

Eating two huge meals and ignoring your progress is NOT bulking up in bodybuilding. It's being fucking lazy.

Get your terms right.


This is true, but even then, I haven't seen anyone who gained ONLY fat while bulking up. too much fat in ratio to muscle, maybe. But never no muscle gain.