T Nation

Switching: Bulking to Dieting


I'm once again hitting what's got to be my absolutely LEAST favorite part of every body transformation routine I've embarked upon.

I had laid out a progression of approximately 10 weeks of bulking, followed by a 6 week CKD, 3 40/30/30 weeks, then another 6 to 8 week CKD (a progression that I have previously used with excellent results).

Anyway, I say it's my least favorite part because I'm about 4 weeks into my bulking phase, and I look in the mirror and see a really fat MF'er staring back at me, and I'm fighting every urge in my body to just say F the last 6 weeks of bulking, and start the CKD now. I look heavy now, and I can't imagine what a a fat, slovenly beast i'll resemble with 6 more weeks of 3,800+ calories.

I'm sure this has to be a very common stage that most people attain at one time or another. What do some of you do to relieve the angst that I'm getting every time I look in the mirror. Do you typically just bite the bullet, and continue bulking as planned for the remaining weeks, or call it quits early and start dieting.

OF course the risk you run with the latter is that you'll diet down and lament how little mass you seem to have and wish you had just stuck it out another few weeks when you were bulking.


A little tough love hear, stop your damned belly aching. You should hear yourself. Personally, I don't understand the whole bulk and slim down thing, but whatever. You are gaining muscle and strength(hopefully). Continue with your plan and stop being a pussy about how you look. You sound like a chick, be a man, reach down and grab a pair and continue on.


dude, if you're gaining fat at too fast of a pace then cut your calories back a little bit...

it's all a bit of a balancing act...if you're not gaining muscle then add more calories...if you're adding fat too quickly along with the muscle then cut back on the calories a little bit...use the mirror as your guide...

how fucking difficult is it to figure out?

why some people act like it's more difficult to gain relatively lean muscle than to get a Phd in astro-physics is beyond me...


Well, you might be starting your bulks at too high bodyfat in the first place, and your calories might be too high causing you to put on too much fat with your muscle. Or it could be in your head, and you have an unrealistic expecation of leaness and how your body should look while bulking. Maybe a combination of the two.


How much do you weigh? How tall are you? How long have you been training? What is your bodyfat? How old are you?

He's only got 9 posts, could this be FAT T MAN's split opposite personality?


You should post a typical days diet and we could get more accurate with the feedback but I have a few general thoughts.

You're still bulking so don't cut down on calories so much as change the form of the cals you're eating. Again, I don't know what you're eating but if its any sugary carbs(sodas, candy, the obvious stuff) then cut that out totally. The same for the so called 'complex' refined carbs(bread, pasta, grain-based stuff). Replace the grams you're eating of those things with an equal number grams of vegetables and fruit.

Those other carbs just spike your insulin and that shuts down all fat burning for fuel that may have been going on. Post-workout especially if you do a post-workout meal. Make it zero carb, just protein and fat.

You need protein but there is a limit. How many grams are you taking per meal? Too many and the excess gets stored as fat and also spikes insulin just like carbs. Fat burning is stopped while the insulin has to mop up excess aminos. Glucagon is released to counter the insulin in the blood and this sets up a whole new round of cravings for carbs. Vicious cycle.

Are you consistently getting lots of sleep? Not enough combined with the hard training can elevate cortisol levels and thats the fast track to a 'spare tire'.


how much do you weigh?...i ask that because to me 3,800+ calories sounds kindda low for bulking...are you under 200?...anyways, just wondering because i take between five and six thousand depending on if it's a work day or not(my job is extremely physical)...

...but like someone else said...it's really not that hard...the way to bulk with adding as little fat as possible is to add some calories to what you're consuming already, not growing enough? add a few more...gaining too much fat?...cut a few...it works great for me because i always schedule my meals, and they're basically the same everyday, if i'm not growing enough i'll just add a granola bar or a piece of fruit to one of my smaller meals, if i'm gaining too much fat i take a granola bar or a piece of fruit away(100-200 cals)...

anyways...hope everything works out for you and your cycles give you good results...


so if you're not taking any carbs post work out, how are you supossed to get your insulin up and restore your glycogen levels?...something very essential to anyone in search of muscle, specially one bulking up....post workout carbs are such an important part of this game that you don't even have to look that far, Surge, Biotest's pwo supplement is designed to stimulate insulin, with (guess what)...49 grams of carbs per serving....yeah, i'll say they're important...

(by the way, the fat will slow down the protein, something you don't want post workout either, specially since you have no carbs to speed things up)