T Nation

Leaning Out/Contest Prep Thread


Yeah, I think I get it. After less than a year of training though, not sure doing a contest prep would be valuable. I feel like I need to put in a few more years of training to make it worthwhile to do a contest prep. I think I will just cut to ten percent and try to stay there. I know BF% isn’t a good gauge, so to put it another way, get to a good lean level, six pack, and then stay around there for a few years before trying a contest prep.

Had this conversation with a friend. I think I would have to be around 165 to be stage ready, and at 6’ tall, 165 isn’t going to impress any one.

Also, I need to clean up my diet. I like the IIFYM for regular training, but getting all of my carbs from Snickers bars isn’t going to be beneficial, lol.


While I’m continually amazed at people who think IIFYM means eating nothing but crappy foods, you would be surprised how much junk you can fit in on days where your carb intake is pretty high.



I had Poo Tarts today post work out, lol.

And, I didn’t feel guilty.

Thank you!


Do you have physique pics?


Nooo, I have some fat bastard pics on my thread, The Pursuit of Mythical Gains, not sure how to link it here.

But, hey, here’s a fat bastard pic.

Sorry for the underwear, but I wanted to show my skinny legs.

As you can see, I lack mass, but feel like it’s decent progress for ten months of committed lifting.

I know BF isn’t the be all end all, but I’m about 15 percent in this picture, at 192, which means I should be about 165 to be any where close to the condition you were in. And, at 165, way too skinny to compete.

Think I may have answered my own questions. Thanks!


You are underestimating yourself.

If you have only been training for a year as you said, I definitely recommend getting a few more under your belt, but you already have a good build and a few more years will be quite respectable.


Coming from you, I consider that high praise.

More to grow, thanks!


Brian whitacre competes at about 165. You’d be amazed how muscle looks when it’s nearly fat free. That’s something that many haven’t yet/never completed folks overlook or simply misunderstand



Yes, and ripped, but three inches shorter than I am.


I would characterize that as more of a hairy-bastard than a fat-bastard pic.


Thanks. I had to bring my chest up considerably, but my conditioning was pretty good and id say that my arms were impressive for a first timer.



if you have them handy, would you mind posting a few comp pics of yourself, Stu? I’ve not seen any (apart from your avatars, obviously)


More emphasis on the side and rear delts, mate.


Good call. I recently switched from 5/3/1 Triumvirate to 5/3/1 Body Building, which includes side lateral raises, so that should help with the side delts.

I’ve also just added in face pulls as a regular exercise, so that should help with rear delts.

So, I’m on it.

I probably also need to work on bi’s, tri’s, upper pecs, lats, and quads . . . just saying, lol.

I’m pretty broad to begin with, I wear a 44 coat, not sure if that translates to Euro sizing, so I think the delts need to come up significantly to show up at all.

But, this is all new to me so I greatly appreciate the suggestions.

Here’s a pic from the Summer, way too tan, but better lighting.


your delts actually look a thousand times better there, but yeah, that tan is just weird.


Sun overdose, from pale to that in two weeks, a little hasty indeed.


I’m on my phone at the moment, so I don’t have tons of professional pics to choose from, but I do have a handful from two of my favorite shows. I know some are blurry or small, but at the time I wasn’t really thinking ahead.




Oh crap! I didn’t realize thise was brads thread… I just click and half the time don’t even know what thread I’m in…

Sorry Brad!! :confused:

(Look what you made me do @Yogi1!)



I am perfectly fine with the content written here. As you know, I’m all for the real bodybuilding talk!

It is titled “contest prep/leaning out” after all. So I think it’s a good thread for anything related, far better than talking about “frequency”, “adding weight to the bar”, anything “not ideal for natty lifters”, “research” and “researchers”, “data”, arguing, and so forth. :grin:


aye right, Stu. We both know you really posted them in this thread so you could be like “this is how it’s done, junior” to Brick!

You look huge in those photos. What kind of weight were you walking about at off-season?