T Nation

Setting a Bulking Goal


I am starting my first proper bulk, and I am trying to do it clean. I am 6'3", 190lbs and somewhere in the mid teens body fat %. For the first time in my life I just want to get big, I am aiming for natural bodybuilding competition at some point in the future, but right now I am lanky as hell (lived and breathed combat sports this past year).

My question is how much do I bulk before I start to cut? I'm not worried about not seeing my abs or anything like that, I just want a reasonable weight to shoot for before I start to cut. I don't know what other info you might need to answer this question for me, but just ask and I'll do my best to answer.


how much you want to bulk depends on your goals…if i was 6’3" I would shoot for 250lbs… keep that new weight for a year and then cut down slowly. just dont do the bulk for 6 weeks and cut for 2. You will not get anywhere.


250lbs sounds a fair goal, but if I try and bulk to that weight all at once am I not going to gain so much fat that it’ll be hard to shift afterwards?


Hey man,

about two years ago I was 179lbs. (I’m 6-1) and I took the slow road to gaining weight. I bulked to 190, maintained for a month, then to 200, maintained for a month, then to 210 and maintained for a month. Since I’ve gone from 210-198-210 again for a powerlifting meet…but this method has served me pretty well. I haven’t gotten super fat. yes i have had to buy new pants…but that’s ok.

I started w/ the carb cycling codex diet, then switched to the cheat to lose diet.

i suggest you look into both of these b/c they are both good ways to gain without having a 50" waist.

if you “all out bulk” you are going to have gains that won’t translate well in the gym.

I agree w/ Mpetty on the fact that at your height, 250+ is a good goal. and once you hit that, stick with it for a YEAR.


My friend is 6’4" and weighs around 260 and just looks like a scaled up “normal sized” person with a bit of a gut. He is around 20-25% BF at the moment.

Saw some pictures of him in College football (so 12-15 years ago) and also 260 but a lot leaner, looked like a “built” normal sized dude. He was squatting in the 600 range for reps at that point and between 2 a days, practice, scrimage, etc. could barely stay at 260 even with huge eating (he was on OL).

I will add that my friend is not only tall but has a very large frame. Currently, he’s 35, sick of carrying the extra weight (well his back and knees are REALLY sick of it between genetics and football injuries) and shooting for 230. At that weight he’ll just look like a “fit” normal sized person.

Basically…I don’t know if 250 would really be “enough” to look “big” at 6’3".


does anyone do a dirty bulk anymore?

Realistically you shouldnt get that fat if you bulk sensibly.

I’d say just resolve to add 1 pound a week to your frame every week until your as big as you want to be, dont set yourself a limit, you’ll know if you get too fat.


I have done my bulk like B Rock has, but i still got another 20 pounds to go :). If your worried about gaining to much fat in the process, you should read Chris Shugarts Clean Bulk article, and some of John Beradi’s stuff. Just make sure you are eating very clean foods and doing light cardio 1 time a week.

I was able to gain 30 lbs while still being able to wear the same pantsi started with. however, they do fit tighter but i still can wear them. There will be some fat gain but you can keep it minimal if you eat clean.