T Nation

Muscle Gain or Fat Loss?


OK, bought Ian King's "THE BOOK OF MUSCLE" several months ago and actually just started reading it yesterday. I learnt a little about slow and fast twitch, testosterone, carbs, protein, fats, (just a bunch of stuff) etc.

Didn't quite grasp the scientific muscle fiber release of certain whatever during whatever, but as time goes on, maybe it will come to me with a little more studying.

Anyway, there's a formula in there that will let you know what your caloric intake is supposed to be. If any of you have read this, does that seem to be about where one can start from. It says, after finding that amount, that, if you want to gain muscle mass, add 500 calories.

To lose fat, reduce calories. Sounds simple enough. What I did'nt find, in the few chapters I read on that subject, was how much carb and fat intake you need. Please take a moment to school me on that if you will.

Just to refresh your memory, incase one or two of you have forgotten, I am 36, 5'11" and probably 30+/- lbs overweight (230lbs). Never been active. Not in just bad shape, but definitely need some work.

My question is, without seeing a pic of me, would it be better for me to concentrate more on burning fat now (diet/exercise) and change up my routine to more of a full body workout or SAME with a muscle group workout, or, up my calories with a full body or SAME with a muscle group workout?

I did learn that more muscle requires more fuel, which, with proper diet, will burn fat for that extra fuel. Ain't that right?

Again, I have only 4 days of gym use per week. I need an effective routine for those days and any suggestions ya'll may have that I can do for the other 3 days.

I appologise if it seems I keep going over the same ole' same ole'. But I'm still very confused as to which way to turn with my particular stats I've mentioned and as a beginner.
All input is greatly appreciated. Thanks..


upper body/cardio
Lower body
Upper body/cardio
Lower body

Cardio doesn't require being in a gym it required not being lazy.


Thanks again, Zep, for the input. But, I don't have gym access for 5 days to get my workout in. I can get cardio in at the gym and at home, naturally, but for the weights, it's only 4 days. So, I guess I'll just pump for 4 and rest with a little cardio the other 3.


What I would do for day 5 since you don't have access to weights would be to do exercises that use your bodyweight as the weight. Such as Push-ups, Pull ups, Chin Up, weightless squats and lunges the list of exercises never ends.

You can switch lowerbody and upperbody workouts days on the list based off what routine of weight free exercises your more comformtible with. Basiclly focus on either lowerbody or upperbody for the weight free workout day not both. The day before should be the opposite part of the body.

It is extremely important to allow one day of rest on your muscles so don't combine two days back to back of upperbody or lowerbody.

With a decent diet you'll get a two for one gain muscle and loss fat. Good luck


you only need four days in the gym with my plan :slight_smile: cardio can be doen anywhere. Just workout 4 days like that or find a good 3 day A-B workout split look at rippetoes.