T Nation

Stuck and Need Help


Hey guys. I'm new to the forum and have been reading T-mag for about 6 months. I'm 5'10" and 180lb with about 10%BF. I have a problem that I can't seem to solve no matter what I try. I'm hoping that one of you can offer some insight that I've overlooked. It's this---I don't have a problem with gaining strength (I routinely Squat and Dead in the 350 range), but I have one helluva time putting on size. I read before that it may be a calorie intake problem, but cranking it up (to around 4000 or so) simply makes me fat. Creatine didn't do jack. Moderately-high doses of prohormones didn't do jack. I've used Staley's and Poliquin's training methods, and they've really helped me in the strength department. However, the damn size just won't come with it! According to all of T-mags articles my diet "should" be good-to-go. However, anything weight I put on over 180lb is simply fat. Do you guys have any ideas? I've been in the game for about 15 yrs or so and I'm out of ideas. Any thoughts would be VERY much appreciated.


John Berardi's "Massive Eating" is what you need to read up on if you haven't yet.


Look at meal timing, IMHO this is as (possibly even more) important as total calories. If you haven't already, I suggest you read the following



I have the exact same problem and the same quantitative build (height and weight and bf). 180 is my sticking point also. I've tried losing some fat with T-dawg 2.0 and trying to rebound through 180, but instead find that I'm just uping my fat coat, which is a little discouraging. My diet is definitely in order (it's been posted previously and improved upon based on the suggestions given). Even on Limping, and Superstrength I'm finding I'm gaining more fat than I'd like.

Hopefully we can both get help...Thanks for asking Rathman


If you've been training that long it would seem you'd be at least in your upper 20's or lower 30's. IMO for most non genetically gifted people who've trained for quite some time and are past their early to mid 20's the hormonal profile is such that gaining muscle in the absence of fat is nearly impossible without steroids, even with very clean diets.


read jb's "Massive eating" article.


To answer Baggett's assumption---I'll be 33 years old next month. Good call. I just finished reading Massive Eating three times. Looks like I've been blowing the "never combine carbs and fat" idiom. I have a feeling that my swelling mid-section is a result of that and not excess calories since that article pegs my ideal intake around 3800 or so. That was close to my high-end for mass cycles in the past. I'll definitely be cutting out the C+F meals and modify my meal timing and see what happens. Thanks for the comments guys! I think we just figured out my problem. I'll see if I can blow this 180 thing once and for all. Thanks again...


After re-reading my first post I realize I came off a bit negative and probably didn't give you much useful advice. What I was trying to say is it's doubtful you'll be able to put on a substantial amount of muscle without at least a bit of fat accumulation as well. This can be a stumbling block for a lot of people who value their abs more then their size (myself included!) At 10% bf you're pretty lean already but you might well find your body won't allow you to lay down much muscle unless you let it creep up a bit maybe in the 12-15% range.


Not at all---I hear what you're saying. I've wondered about that age/hormone profile thing for a few years now. And I've reluctantly realized that my abs are gonna have to go if I want to break the 180 barrier. Summer or not I'm hitting the Massive Eating plan full force. Again---thanks for the replies. They helped a lot. I appreciate it!!!