Calorie Counter

Message Boards Goal: Gaining Weight and Body Building
You are currently viewing the message boards in:

Anyone cutting after a bulk?

17576777981

Replies

  • vivek_bharathivivek_bharathi Member Posts: 4 Member Member Posts: 4 Member
    Hey I was skinny with cutting but I really don’t like tat . I wanna make bulk cutting like a beast...And I’m new here wanna make some frndz for better motivation
  • jmarieua10jmarieua10 Member, Premium Posts: 1 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1 Member
    Hey all, I’ve been lurking for a while as I ran a six-month bulk that wrapped up near the end of May. I was really pleased with my 12lb weight gain, significant strength gains, and all the comments on the definition in my shoulders and arms! Now I’m having a really hard time getting this cut off the ground - eating more is way more fun than eating less! I’m hoping a little accountability here will help keep me on track 😊
  • steveko89steveko89 Member Posts: 1,614 Member Member Posts: 1,614 Member
    First week back in the office went pretty well fitness-wise. Down a full pound on average since last Monday to 173.4 and have been flirting with cracking the 172s for a daily point for the first time since last April. Still readjusting to getting up earlier to lift so I've missed a few sets but at least hitting all the major lifts. I should've snapped a picture this morning; I had four bars going and every weight plate except one pair of 5s employed to giant set DL, Squat, Bench, Rows, and Face pulls.
  • hlr1987hlr1987 Member Posts: 126 Member Member Posts: 126 Member
    I've been researching lean bulks, so do you mind if I ask a few questions here? It does connect to cutting after a bulk.
    I'm wondering how long have you all typically bulked for?
    As far as I can determine if I'm a woman, not new to lifting but not super experienced (2nd year while I lose weight), then the most muscle I could expect to put on would be about .5lb a month. I've seen the recommendation of 10-12 weeks suggested as a first time bulk period, so including the same amount of fat over that period I could expect to put on 3-5lb overall? That doesn't seem like a huge amount of fat to have to cut afterwards, when I'm in the middle of still losing 70 pounds. Do you all bulk for longer than this (I can see six months mentioned above)? And would being limited by small calorie increase in a lean bulk make a more longer bulk effective? I can see myself yo-yo-ing and not really making any gains at all, but I'm very hesitant about gaining a massive amount of fat since I've spent so bloody long losing it. So overall I'm wondering how long people have bulked for, because the cut discussed here seems to be longer than the less than a month I would expect I'd need to lose the fat gained off 12 weeks of bulking?
  • Mr_Healthy_HabitsMr_Healthy_Habits Member Posts: 10,618 Member Member Posts: 10,618 Member
    hlr1987 wrote: »
    I've been researching lean bulks, so do you mind if I ask a few questions here? It does connect to cutting after a bulk.
    I'm wondering how long have you all typically bulked for?
    As far as I can determine if I'm a woman, not new to lifting but not super experienced (2nd year while I lose weight), then the most muscle I could expect to put on would be about .5lb a month. I've seen the recommendation of 10-12 weeks suggested as a first time bulk period, so including the same amount of fat over that period I could expect to put on 3-5lb overall? That doesn't seem like a huge amount of fat to have to cut afterwards, when I'm in the middle of still losing 70 pounds. Do you all bulk for longer than this (I can see six months mentioned above)? And would being limited by small calorie increase in a lean bulk make a more longer bulk effective? I can see myself yo-yo-ing and not really making any gains at all, but I'm very hesitant about gaining a massive amount of fat since I've spent so bloody long losing it. So overall I'm wondering how long people have bulked for, because the cut discussed here seems to be longer than the less than a month I would expect I'd need to lose the fat gained off 12 weeks of bulking?

    Usually I bulk until I can't stand the water balloon suit and longer, then I cut until people start calling me skinny and I start bouncing off the other Dads on the soccer field like a basketball ball off a wall 🤷🏽‍♂️...

    It's about a 20lb difference... And I'm kinda not even joking 😂
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,315 Member Member Posts: 9,315 Member
    @hlr1987

    You can ask anything in here. People are at all different stages...bulking, cutting, recomping, etc. It is a place to talk and learn more and discuss different techniques and research and post accountability for what we are doing!

    So yes for females we gain muscle slower, the recommendation for weight gain I have seen (and experienced) is about 2lbs per month or less for a good muscle to fat ratio. In terms of how much of that will be muscle is very dependent on experience, how lean you start, genetics (including hormones), muscle stimulation, could be 50%, could be a bit more or less.

    In terms of how long people bulk, it really depends on the person and how comfortable they are. I would say if you want to put on a good muscle base then bulking for at least 4 months is a good plan. Any less and you might not build enough to be noticeable/worth it, plus as you gain you get a bulking momentum going so it's best to keep it up as much as you can (vs small bulks and small cuts) Some people can bulk for a year (they would typically gain fairly slow might have some periods of cutting in between also called "mini cuts" to keep the fat gain at bay). Most people will stop bulking when they get very uncomfortable with their fat gain or their bodyfat% reaches a certain point. For me it's usually when I reach a size I am happy with or I need to cut down before summer. My first bulk was about 4.5 months, my second bulk was 6 months, my last bulk was 8 months. I gained about 0.5lb per week or 2lb per month. As for cutting most people cut about half as long as they bulk, again there is variance some people will do a faster cut, slower cut, it really depends on experience and comfort level and how lean they want to get. My 8 month bulk I actually cut for 6 months (we moved homes and went on a few small vacations) so it took a little longer than usual. But my results were the same (or better?)

    And while bulking and cutting is easy on paper, in reality it is a whole different story. The mental and physical challenges that go along with it (especially if someone comes from a history of losing a lot of weight or an eating disorder) it can be a rollercoaster and despite having run 3 cycles myself and how much I love them it is absolutely NOT for everyone or even most people.

    Hopefully I answered your questions not sure if I missed anything, if you want more detail about my bulks/cuts feel free to ask :)
  • steveko89steveko89 Member Posts: 1,614 Member Member Posts: 1,614 Member
    hlr1987 wrote: »
    when I'm in the middle of still losing 70 pounds.

    Does this mean you're still looking to ultimately lose 30-35 lbs?

    If so I'd suggest continuing to cut and put off bulking. It's been documented that bulking is more efficient (in terms of muscle:fat gain ratio) if started from a leaner state, at least in men. The evidence I've seen there suggest men cut down to ~10% body fat and bulk to 15-17% in order to avoid diminishing returns. Translating those ranges for women where I'd speculate there's a similarly advantageous scenario it would be to cut to ~20% or less and then bulk to 25-27%. As Stef mentioned, the pace at which either is accomplished varies.

  • hlr1987hlr1987 Member Posts: 126 Member Member Posts: 126 Member
    Thanks for the information :smile: One of the best things about this forum is the chance to ask alot of lovely people for their experience and advice!

    No to the 30+lb, I phrased that badly. I'm currently 12lb above a healthy bmi, and I believe I'm about 25% bf, mostly held in my lower tummy and upper thighs, everywhere else I can see some muscle definition but between post baby excess skin and genetics, it's taking longer to see anything there. I'm aware I need to keep cutting, and I should to be in a good place to transition to maintenance before the end of the summer. I'm aiming for nearer 20% bf before I change anything up, if that lines up with the bmi bracket, great, if not (shrug), my goal weight is a bit vague atm.

    In part, right now I'm over planning for the future because I'm bored working at home and because, having only experienced lifting in a deficit I've hit a wall a few times and I get envious hearing people say how much better it feels lifting in a surplus. Does it feel noticeably different to lift in maintenance vs a surplus in terms of strength and recovery?
    There's also the idea that it's always nice to have a goal, not sure if maintaining or recomp-ing wouldn't feel a bit aimless, and @sardelsa it's good to hear about the mental challenges as well.

    There's a general idea, I think, that bulking involves ballooning for a while (that's the reaction I got when I mentioned it in conversation to other people), and when I started to research it seemed like that didn't line up with the math, especially for women. Lots of the information out there on expected progress is aimed at newbie gains, rather than someone whose been lifting for a while but never extensively outside of a deficit. I'm really enjoying lifting, and it fits nicely in my routine, and I love the effects, I would mostly just like to make more progress in strength more often but not at the expense of a waistline I've worked hard for!

  • steveko89steveko89 Member Posts: 1,614 Member Member Posts: 1,614 Member
    For me, I'm bad at getting particularly lean and lack the mental toughness to truly bulk and "balloon" in weight as you suggested so the net effect is that I basically recomp with gradual increases and decreases. I started lifting consitently/seriously in 2015 at around 175 lbs. Since then I've stayed in the range of 168-183 lbs (6'1" for reference) and pretty consistently improved my body composition from about 18% at the start down to ~12% currently at 174 lbs by moving average, at least by my skulpt numbers.

    lex6m64huokj.jpeg
    edit: I thought the 10K picture was '15 but it was '14 and about 166 lbs. The DL pic is from a few weeks ago, <10 lb net difference on the scale.
    edited June 11
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 36,356 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 36,356 MFP Moderator
    steveko89 wrote: »
    For me, I'm bad at getting particularly lean and lack the mental toughness to truly bulk and "balloon" in weight as you suggested so the net effect is that I basically recomp with gradual increases and decreases. I started lifting consitently/seriously in 2015 at around 175 lbs. Since then I've stayed in the range of 168-183 lbs (6'1" for reference) and pretty consistently improved my body composition from about 18% at the start down to ~12% currently at 174 lbs by moving average, at least by my skulpt numbers.

    lex6m64huokj.jpeg
    edit: I thought the 10K picture was '15 but it was '14 and about 166 lbs. The DL pic is from a few weeks ago, <10 lb net difference on the scale.

    Great work man. I understand what you mean on toughness to get lean. This *kitten* sucks!
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 36,356 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 36,356 MFP Moderator
    A little update:

    So it's been a crazy week, so it was a good week to do a diet break. Since I am on carbs this week, I am up a few lbs (166-167) but am transition back to keto tomorrow. I was going to go on vacation, but my wife might have torn her rotator cuff. So instead of leaving tonight, she has a doctors tomorrow and surgery tomorrow or Monday if it's confirmed. On top of that, I was trying to replace silicon in my bathroom and found some mold and a ton of my tiles were breaking (cheap contractor grade tiles from 20 years ago). So bathroom is pretty much gutted, awaiting the results from the mold inspection, and will be getting an overall, all while my wife might have surgery.


    On the brightside, I have been running the AX2 program from AthleanX and it's pretty good. So far (only in week 2) it's a bit more focused on functional fitness. And what's even better, my gym finally is opening tomorrow, so there is a good chance I will go back and start running PHAT.
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,315 Member Member Posts: 9,315 Member
    @hlr1987 I am currently lifting at maintenance (recomping). I would say it is pretty good, much better than lifting in a deficit, strength goes up but lifting in a surplus it is much easier to make strength gains (up to a point, if I get too high in bodyfat I get sluggish and my performance starts to suffer a bit).

    There are pros and cons to bulking and cutting as well as recomp. To be quite honest, I do not like recomp for myself. I am trying it. I am not enjoying it. I think I am reaching my limit with it (going on a measly 4 months of it now). I have also never done it before so not knowing what to expect is a big factor. I am also super impatient. The pros of it though: the lack of weight gain and not feeling bloated all the time. You can still eat quite a bit, you still see strength gains in the gym, you don't have to worry about doing a cut after you are done and reducing intake. So in your case, when you get to goal or close, I would stay at maintenance for a bit and see how you feel especially if you just came from losing a lot of weight. If you were to jump into a bulk it can be very mentally overwhelming to put it back on again, see the scale go up and some fat increases. It really depends on you and your goals and comfort level !

    Also to the balloon comment, bulking doesn't have to mean gaining so much weight and fat. While I gained some fat, I didn't lose my shape too much, I lost some definition but gained a lot of curve and felt pretty good. Slow and steady was key for me.
  • cupcakesandproteinshakescupcakesandproteinshakes Member Posts: 767 Member Member Posts: 767 Member
    hlr1987 wrote: »
    Thanks for the information :smile: One of the best things about this forum is the chance to ask alot of lovely people for their experience and advice!

    No to the 30+lb, I phrased that badly. I'm currently 12lb above a healthy bmi, and I believe I'm about 25% bf, mostly held in my lower tummy and upper thighs, everywhere else I can see some muscle definition but between post baby excess skin and genetics, it's taking longer to see anything there. I'm aware I need to keep cutting, and I should to be in a good place to transition to maintenance before the end of the summer. I'm aiming for nearer 20% bf before I change anything up, if that lines up with the bmi bracket, great, if not (shrug), my goal weight is a bit vague atm.

    In part, right now I'm over planning for the future because I'm bored working at home and because, having only experienced lifting in a deficit I've hit a wall a few times and I get envious hearing people say how much better it feels lifting in a surplus. Does it feel noticeably different to lift in maintenance vs a surplus in terms of strength and recovery?
    There's also the idea that it's always nice to have a goal, not sure if maintaining or recomp-ing wouldn't feel a bit aimless, and @sardelsa it's good to hear about the mental challenges as well.

    There's a general idea, I think, that bulking involves ballooning for a while (that's the reaction I got when I mentioned it in conversation to other people), and when I started to research it seemed like that didn't line up with the math, especially for women. Lots of the information out there on expected progress is aimed at newbie gains, rather than someone whose been lifting for a while but never extensively outside of a deficit. I'm really enjoying lifting, and it fits nicely in my routine, and I love the effects, I would mostly just like to make more progress in strength more often but not at the expense of a waistline I've worked hard for!
    Hey
    What programme are you following and what’s your lifting history?

    I found lifting at maintenance worked just fine for me for 3 years. I lost only about 7 pounds during that period but I look noticeably different now.

    My recovery was fine generally. I’m intending to bulk for the first time once gyms in the uk reopen. I’m sort of hanging out around maintenance atm and doing a dB programme adapted from what I was doing before lock down
  • steveko89steveko89 Member Posts: 1,614 Member Member Posts: 1,614 Member
    Decided to dig into my data a little bit and if you make a cutoff right before our son was born (12/2018) you see a pretty good representation of what a 3+ year recomp looks in a consistent life setting (same residence, job, family situation, etc.)

    Scale weight: 170 to 179
    BF%: 18.3 to 12.8
    LBM: 138.89 to 156.088 (+17.198)
    FBM: 31.1 to 22.9 (-8.2)

    5b8dbel3bt2h.png
  • hlr1987hlr1987 Member Posts: 126 Member Member Posts: 126 Member
    @cupcakesandproteinshakes I picked up a non-Olympic barbell early last year after my second kid and began with a stronglifts 5x5 app at home, but in the background to jogging because I always enjoyed it. I began to focus more on weights this year because of knee pain with too much running, but I've found it difficult to progress now because I've not got the plates to push my deadlifts, and my upper body progress is very slow, I've struggled to push beyond 5 reps at @32kg in an overhead press. I've just been switching to an adapted (for my equipment) strong curves to see if I can progress more/differently with a variation in moves and more reps. I'm stronger and in better shape visually than I was at this weight before kids (in most places) so I do think I've retained a lot of muscle as I've lost weight. I'm focused on dropping the bf % atm and dreaming of having the money/ space to set up a squat rack at some point.
  • cupcakesandproteinshakescupcakesandproteinshakes Member Posts: 767 Member Member Posts: 767 Member
    steveko89 wrote: »
    Decided to dig into my data a little bit and if you make a cutoff right before our son was born (12/2018) you see a pretty good representation of what a 3+ year recomp looks in a consistent life setting (same residence, job, family situation, etc.)

    Scale weight: 170 to 179
    BF%: 18.3 to 12.8
    LBM: 138.89 to 156.088 (+17.198)
    FBM: 31.1 to 22.9 (-8.2)

    5b8dbel3bt2h.png

    That’s fantastic progress. You look so different.
  • hlr1987hlr1987 Member Posts: 126 Member Member Posts: 126 Member
    steveko89 wrote: »
    Decided to dig into my data a little bit and if you make a cutoff right before our son was born (12/2018) you see a pretty good representation of what a 3+ year recomp looks in a consistent life setting (same residence, job, family situation, etc.)

    Scale weight: 170 to 179
    BF%: 18.3 to 12.8
    LBM: 138.89 to 156.088 (+17.198)
    FBM: 31.1 to 22.9 (-8.2)

    5b8dbel3bt2h.png

    That looks amazing, thanks. I had in my head that I would probably aim to recomp for a while and see how things settled, get used to it a while, but figured it was worthwhile researching options while I'm in downtime anyway.
    It may all be a moot point anyway, since my equipment is restricted I didn't care so much that I was struggling to get stronger (OK, that a lie, of course I care, but you know, realism) but I'm assuming that at some point in the future a lack of progressive overload might hinder me more than my calorie intake.
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,315 Member Member Posts: 9,315 Member
    @steveko89 fantastic job. I love to see where recomp can take people and how great it works, I wish I had the patience!
  • steveko89steveko89 Member Posts: 1,614 Member Member Posts: 1,614 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    @steveko89 fantastic job. I love to see where recomp can take people and how great it works, I wish I had the patience!

    Thanks. I do wish the full graph looked that nice. In hindsight I wasn't really training for much of last year, more just checking the box and that shows in my stalled lifts and blips in body composition. My observed TDEE was down for like the whole year and I let my calories and weight really creep up in Q4.
  • GaryRunsGaryRuns Member, Premium Posts: 368 Member Member, Premium Posts: 368 Member
    Where did you get your lean mass number from over that much time @steveko89? You haven't had a Skulpt for that long have you? That's really cool.

    Just got my Skulpt based on what you and @pitbullpuppy have written here. It is a lot of fun to have those numbers. From what I've read it's not super accurate, but it's very consistent and that makes things like your graph very relevant to judging your progress. That said, it gave me 18% and that's about what my own estimate was after my Covid-19 experience. Not getting the virus, but gaining 19 pounds while quarantined because of it. :D
Sign In or Register to comment.