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Weight Lifting for Fat Loss, Best Method?

I am 255lbs and want to get down to 220lbs lean, I’m 30 and 5’11.

Which of these two do you think is the best method to bring down body fat and build up lean muscle.

  1. To focus on burning fat, once lean then work on bulking up on muscle mass.


  1. Focus on building muscle mass that will cause body fat to decrease.

Search Bulk vs cut and you will find about 9000 threads on this topic…

Depends on where the person is at… If they are currently overweight, should lose the fat first… if they are relatively lean, work on building muscle, for a long while

If you are just starting you should be able to work on both for a while.

Depends. If you’ve been dieting a while eating around maintenance and working on strength could be a good break, then give another go to fat loss.

I would say that it’s not extremely important to be sub 10% before you start bulking-I’m probably around 15-18 and “bulking”. I do think you’re not at the point where you want to work on building mass quite yet.

I took a look at your profile, and you’ve come a long way already. Maybe it’d be better to keep the momentum and continue loosing fat.

Congrats on the progress so far!

I have been working on both now for about 12 months but I am currently finding that my fat loss is not as consistent as it use to be.

I am trying to eat between 1600 - 1700 for fat loss but then I am not making any muscle gains because that’s not enough.

I workout 3 times a week; Tue, Thu & Friday.

Thanks boyscout! Still lots of lard to shift, and I’m getting impatient!

What supplements do any of you recommend?

I have been taking Whey shakes for a while now (made with water) 1 on non-training days and 2 on training day.

I have also started taking Amino acids for about two weeks now.

I personally feel that if your caloric intake has been about 20% or more below maintenance you should take a break every 8 weeks from dieting. Your break - again, my opinion - should be around 6-8 weeks. Eat at maintenance for the duration of your break, then slip back into diet mode. Fat loss is not linear; you will plateau so you must take advantage of these plateaus and use them to adjust your body to your new weight/leanness. Otherwise, you will put weight back on (fat) quickly.

This is probably why the general populace complains about weight coming back from a crash diet; the diet and subsequent return to normal eating habits resembles a period of fasting followed by a period of feasting, and the longer you have been fasting the quicker your body will want to gorge itself on whatever you give it.

Breaks are a good thing. Plus, you should have a ‘plateau busters’ laid out for yourself: fluctuations in caloric intake (up AND down), macro manipulation, changes in activity levels.

[quote]andrewscott wrote:
boyscout wrote:Congrats on the progress so far!

Thanks boyscout! Still lots of lard to shift, and I’m getting impatient!

What supplements do any of you recommend?

I have been taking Whey shakes for a while now (made with water) 1 on non-training days and 2 on training day.

I have also started taking Amino acids for about two weeks now. [/quote]

Whey, Creatine and Fish Oil should be your staple supplements.

Patience is key. You’re undoing a liftime of bad habits. A year or two out of thirty is not all that much time.

I think your calories are WAY low. Up them for a while then go back to fat loss. I would think around 2300-2500 would be about right for fat loss. If you’re not already, adding some walking every day can help as well. But definitely start by upping the calories.

Calories definitely seem too low for someone your size, especially if you’ve been lifting for a year. I’d agree with PonceDeLeon, a break is in order if you’ve been at it awhile.

Loss will plateau, and if you want to get the loss back, you’ll need to get back to maintenance+ for awhile. You may as well use this time for strength/muscle gains.

Have you been on 1600-1700 calories while doing ‘both’? If so, you definitely need to kick it up because that’s lower than maintenance, and you’ve been there for awhile (12mo?).

Cleaning up the diet always helps. You can almost always make changes here, even if you’ve cleaned up everything you thought you could, perhaps you’re missing healthy foods and whatnot.

By the way, consider that your metabolism will slow down if you’ve been doing the same amount of work per week and been eating so little for so long.

So, to BOOST your metabolism, you should actually increase your calories (20-30% over maintenance) for 1-2 weeks. Try doing this at the tail end of your break, just before you start cutting again.

5’9 - was 220 now 190. Worked out for many years but was reading the wrong info. (BB magazines and bullshit diet info)

What changed?

Stopped thinking cardio and started adding weight to the bar. Some cardio on off days but that was more as something to do rather than to ‘get in shape.’

Read Waterbury first and that worked really well for 9 months. Still always adding weight and decreasing rest intervals. Read Cressey next and my training IQ went up. (I neglected my posterior chain for years!) Still more weight - started eating clean and adding a little more cardio.

Moral to the story. While watching my diet the more weight I lift the leaner I get. Cardio has very little to do with the body transformation I have gone through.

BTW - initally I got down to 178 pounds and started to increase my calories and protein intake because my back was lagging. Still adding weight to the bar I have put on close to 12 pounds of muscle while keeping my BF% below 12%. I am just under 10% right now.

Lots of fiber, very few processed carbs, fish oil, and good fats. My calorie intake was between 2500-3000 cals a day more or less.

Frequency should be your greatest concern. 6 days a week for less than an hour will do more for you right now than 3 days a week. Intensity is key - that is what I think made the biggest difference to me.

Ok PonceDeLeon & Hugo82, I’ll be looking at upping my cals to maintenance over the next 2 weeks and then we’ll see how it goes.

I will also be adding carbs to my evening meal before my workouts.

Thanks again guys for your feedback!