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Non-Complicated Way of Building Muscle and Cutting?

breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
So I'm asking this question for my boyfriend, who is naturally pretty fit and has never really had a problem with his weight in his life. He is really teachable and humble and comes to me for advice, but he's not the type of person to sit down and dig through tons of research.

He's put on a little weight in his stomach that he would like to get rid of and build a little muscle all over. He works out/lifts/runs on a regular basis, and eats overall healthy but doesn't track what he eats.

Is there maybe a loose reference guide that he could easily follow without strictly counting calories/macros?

I'm more on the losing weight side of things. But it is my understanding that you should eat at certain macros and go through periods of eating at a surplus and deficit while lifting. I don't think he would ever want to be that meticulous and would more realistically try to eyeball things.

And are there quick references for proper lifting/resting?


I know that this won't yield exact results if he is unwilling to track. But, I believe he could get a little closer if he knew a little more what he was doing. Right now, he keeps burning but isn't quite yielding any results at all.

Replies

  • kimny72kimny72 Member Posts: 15,361 Member Member Posts: 15,361 Member
    This is not my area of expertise at all, but to give your thread a bump, one thing I do know is if he's been putting on a little weight eating as he is, he's going to have to eat a little less (or burn a few more calories) to get his weight headed in the other direction, however he's willing to try to make that happen. :wink:

    I'm sure someone with experience in bulk and cut cycles will be by shortly. In the meantime , check out the Most Helpful Posts thread pinned to the top of this sub-forum, maybe there's something in there that will help too!
    edited July 13
  • ritzvinritzvin Member, Premium Posts: 2,687 Member Member, Premium Posts: 2,687 Member
    If he's getting a lot of cardio exercise in, then simply making sure item #1 he's eating right afterward is not very calorie dense can make a difference (it's easy to scarf down a 2000 calorie plate of burger & fries in a flash at a post-run pub when runger strikes while washing it down with a 200-300 calorie beer). (Little things like this and cutting down on the beer and restaurant trips can often be all the difference needed for active people rather than needing to actually count calories).

    If he's not currently following any type of plan or methodology to his lifting, then it doesn't really get any more 'keep-it-simple-stupid' than this one: https://www.aworkoutroutine.com/the-beginner-weight-training-workout-routine/ (since I don't know his lifting history, can't tell you whether a beginner program would be a good fit or not). There's a sticky note on this particular board with some listings of common programs.
  • breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
    ritzvin wrote: »
    If he's getting a lot of cardio exercise in, then simply making sure item #1 he's eating right afterward is not very calorie dense can make a difference (it's easy to scarf down a 2000 calorie plate of burger & fries in a flash at a post-run pub when runger strikes while washing it down with a 200-300 calorie beer). (Little things like this and cutting down on the beer and restaurant trips can often be all the difference needed for active people rather than needing to actually count calories).

    If he's not currently following any type of plan or methodology to his lifting, then it doesn't really get any more 'keep-it-simple-stupid' than this one: https://www.aworkoutroutine.com/the-beginner-weight-training-workout-routine/ (since I don't know his lifting history, can't tell you whether a beginner program would be a good fit or not). There's a sticky note on this particular board with some listings of common programs.

    Thanks! He is more of a "spaz lifter" lol where he just rolls up to equipment and does something like a hiit workout with no breaks in between.

    He does often over eat at dinner time but I think he is just maintaining. He has maybe 10lbs to lose. I actually think he could stand to do a little bulk then lean out in the shredding process.

    But when I explain it, I don't do a great job or it's just information overload.
  • KHMcGKHMcG Member Posts: 687 Member Member Posts: 687 Member
    Some simple changes could be the following.

    Daily good quality pushups. Google proper form
    Daily squats. Preferably holding dumbbells In a neutral grip.

    Tell him to eat oatmeal and a banana for breakfast.

    Add 2 to 3 hard-boiled eggs to lunch

    and have cottage cheese for evening snack instead of seconds

    Cut as much weekday drinking as possible.
    Reduce breads and sugars.
    No more Soda pop...

    No Calorie counting required....
  • breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
    KHMcG wrote: »
    Some simple changes could be the following.

    Daily good quality pushups. Google proper form
    Daily squats. Preferably holding dumbbells In a neutral grip.

    Tell him to eat oatmeal and a banana for breakfast.

    Add 2 to 3 hard-boiled eggs to lunch

    and have cottage cheese for evening snack instead of seconds

    Cut as much weekday drinking as possible.
    Reduce breads and sugars.
    No more Soda pop...

    No Calorie counting required....

    He is Chinese and mainly eats Asian foods-- I'm not sure oatmeal, bananas and cottage cheese will be his jam. He could definitely eyeball some protein, rice, and veggies. He knows to watch his sauces a bit because they can add up.
  • MikePfirrmanMikePfirrman Member Posts: 1,631 Member Member Posts: 1,631 Member
    If he does enough lifting and cardio, then it's simply getting enough protein and cutting out the overly processed foods. I do similar types of lifting as he does but do cardio 6 days a week for an hour.

    If I simply cut out sugar, I'd be extremely cut. But I don't and I always carry around 10 lbs that is the difference between a highly visible six pack and looking pretty good but not like a fitness model. I'm celiac and the wife is allergic to cow dairy and we eat the same way, so it eliminates like 95% of processed food. What it keeps is sugar and corn syrup. I don't eat a ton of that but enough to keep the weight on.

    That 10 lbs or so makes a huge difference. It sounds like he's roughly 20% BF like I am from what you're describing. It's not easy to lose when you don't have a lot to lose and you can't just workout more typically because time constraints, so it just take buckling down and getting enough protein in. And enough fat to stay satiated as well but not junk fat. Olive Oil, avocados, eggs for instance.

    If he eats fried foods, eliminate that. Any snacks like ice cream and replace with fruit. And get 100g plus of protein a day. That's about as simple as it can be for him. But the big thing is just buckling down and that's up to him entirely.

    Brown and black rice not white rice would help too.
    edited July 13
  • KHMcGKHMcG Member Posts: 687 Member Member Posts: 687 Member
    Hmm, well the oatmeal is a great carb, low fat and high fiber. Not a traditional Chinese porridge but a quick search brought this... https://chinafoodingredients.com/2017/04/20/i-love-you-what-chinese-do-with-oat/

    Getting breakfast right sets the whole day up. And Mike is right with the eggs, dropping some sugar and fried foods.

    Don't worry about the disagrees, I am experienced at this... Check out my profile.
  • Diatonic12Diatonic12 Member Posts: 5,410 Member Member Posts: 5,410 Member
    @ninerbuff knows the way and the answers to this question.
  • unforgettable2010unforgettable2010 Member Posts: 93 Member Member Posts: 93 Member
    To keep it simple:

    1- Faster cardio in the morning works wonders to shed belly fat over time if he sticks with it.

    2- Building muscle simple overall. Eat clean. He needs protein AND carbs. If he isn’t getting results, eat more. He has to be in a caloric surplus to gain muscle.

    3- His rep ranges should be in the 8-12 reps area. Not an easy 8-12. A work your tail off 8-12.

    If he grinds that out 90 days, he’ll see a difference.
  • PAV8888PAV8888 Member Posts: 7,388 Member Member Posts: 7,388 Member
    Holy *kittens* batwoman!

    Let's be realistic here. If the guy has been exercising throughout but has packed a bit of a paunch, then he is NOT eating at maintenance.

    He HAS been bulking (by the sounds of it slowly)... and just not getting the results you want. Alternatively, he has been doing my own favourite type of reverse recomp (I'm good at it)... the one where you keep weight constant and trade muscle into fat (as opposed to the one most MFPers want to undergo, where they keep weight constant and trade fat into muscle!)

    So let's stop kidding here.

    Bulk is out... he is already getting chubbier than you want.

    Cut-bulk cycles are out when the person is not even interested in keeping track or committing majorly towards body building.

    So where, if anywhere, do we have easy pickings?

    TRAIN TO A PROVEN PROGRAM <commit to that>
    <check out @psuLemon 's FAQ and discussion about proven programs>

    If he does, and IF he likes it, all of a sudden he will be the first one looking for the high protein snacks and all the clean this and that and maybe putting in a bit of effort on his own to limit calories and see even more results!

    What other easy pickings?

    A slight deficit...

    .... maybe modify things so he doesn't wait to eat till he gets to be super hungry?
    Start the meal with lower calories things, maybe a bunch of veggies, that you serve first before bringing out the higher calorie items? Maybe cook "heavier" by adding extra garlic and onion to make him feel full with less calories overall? Maybe reduce the hyperpalatable items in the house and keep the ones you do have in portion controlled packages!
  • gallicinvasiongallicinvasion Member, Premium Posts: 909 Member Member, Premium Posts: 909 Member
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!
  • PAV8888PAV8888 Member Posts: 7,388 Member Member Posts: 7,388 Member
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.
  • gallicinvasiongallicinvasion Member, Premium Posts: 909 Member Member, Premium Posts: 909 Member
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    😊 @PAV8888 totally agree with your other advice btw! But I had a moment reading all the stuff above (definitely not just your comment 😉) because I am currently struggling with feeling very accountable and responsible for my partner’s weight loss and mood in a way that I KNOW is not good for me 😂 So while reading the OP, I was trying to think through some of the things that might be causing me to feel that guilt, since it is not really healthy for me to be wallowing in guilt about another grown-person’s health journey.
  • breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    😊 @PAV8888 totally agree with your other advice btw! But I had a moment reading all the stuff above (definitely not just your comment 😉) because I am currently struggling with feeling very accountable and responsible for my partner’s weight loss and mood in a way that I KNOW is not good for me 😂 So while reading the OP, I was trying to think through some of the things that might be causing me to feel that guilt, since it is not really healthy for me to be wallowing in guilt about another grown-person’s health journey.

    I think you may be projecting. My BF does take responsibility for his own health. I am in no way burdened because he has a little pudge. I don't stay awake feeling like I need to cook healthier so that he can be healthy.

    We are in a healthy relationship where we share and listen to insights the other person might have. I happen to be the one who has more information about weight loss because I've struggled with my weight the most and have done a lot more research for myself. He is just now getting into having to research this and so I was asking for some quick sources that might be helpful--knowing that counting calories/macros is unlikely to be sustainable for him.

    I don't carry the "burden" of doing research for him-- it is something I enjoy looking into. Just like he has things that he is much more interested in (like investing and stock markets) that he shares with me and helps me make decisions.

    It's not a responsibility, it's a joy. He isn't on an island by himself and neither am I. So we can lean on each other in the ways we see fit. If that's not for you, well honestly.. I don't really care.
  • breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    Responding to your "tree advice". You can see above for your "forest" advise.

    I should correct my original post and say that he didn't put on a little weight in his stomach recently-- The past 2 years that I have known him he has had it and been trying to get rid of it. He looks the exact same and has not been "losing muscle and gaining fat" he is the same build hes been. And by pudge, I mean I really mean a small amount.

    I'd also like to make it clear that I think he looks great. I was only asking because I know he would like to change his body composition. I have much further to go than he does. And as far as him to stop "kitten-ing around and using a proven lifting program", he is literally just beginning to look into this. He has been naturally fit his whole life.

    So if you type "proven lifting programs" into the search engine, he will have to take a lot of time sorting through BS to form an educated opinion. Which is why I was asking here.
  • gallicinvasiongallicinvasion Member, Premium Posts: 909 Member Member, Premium Posts: 909 Member
    breefoshee wrote: »
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    😊 @PAV8888 totally agree with your other advice btw! But I had a moment reading all the stuff above (definitely not just your comment 😉) because I am currently struggling with feeling very accountable and responsible for my partner’s weight loss and mood in a way that I KNOW is not good for me 😂 So while reading the OP, I was trying to think through some of the things that might be causing me to feel that guilt, since it is not really healthy for me to be wallowing in guilt about another grown-person’s health journey.

    I think you may be projecting. My BF does take responsibility for his own health. I am in no way burdened because he has a little pudge. I don't stay awake feeling like I need to cook healthier so that he can be healthy.

    We are in a healthy relationship where we share and listen to insights the other person might have. I happen to be the one who has more information about weight loss because I've struggled with my weight the most and have done a lot more research for myself. He is just now getting into having to research this and so I was asking for some quick sources that might be helpful--knowing that counting calories/macros is unlikely to be sustainable for him.

    I don't carry the "burden" of doing research for him-- it is something I enjoy looking into. Just like he has things that he is much more interested in (like investing and stock markets) that he shares with me and helps me make decisions.

    It's not a responsibility, it's a joy. He isn't on an island by himself and neither am I. So we can lean on each other in the ways we see fit. If that's not for you, well honestly.. I don't really care.

    Fully admit it’s very possible I’m projecting 😂 but wanted to share the view just in case. You never know when someone’s experience might be helpful to someone else. Glad you have joy together.
  • kimny72kimny72 Member Posts: 15,361 Member Member Posts: 15,361 Member
    breefoshee wrote: »
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    Responding to your "tree advice". You can see above for your "forest" advise.

    I should correct my original post and say that he didn't put on a little weight in his stomach recently-- The past 2 years that I have known him he has had it and been trying to get rid of it. He looks the exact same and has not been "losing muscle and gaining fat" he is the same build hes been. And by pudge, I mean I really mean a small amount.

    I'd also like to make it clear that I think he looks great. I was only asking because I know he would like to change his body composition. I have much further to go than he does. And as far as him to stop "kitten-ing around and using a proven lifting program", he is literally just beginning to look into this. He has been naturally fit his whole life.

    So if you type "proven lifting programs" into the search engine, he will have to take a lot of time sorting through BS to form an educated opinion. Which is why I was asking here.

    With a quick glance I don't see the link posted, so here is a thread that might help if he'd like to get on a solid program.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10332083/which-lifting-program-is-the-best-for-you/p1
  • breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
    breefoshee wrote: »
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    😊 @PAV8888 totally agree with your other advice btw! But I had a moment reading all the stuff above (definitely not just your comment 😉) because I am currently struggling with feeling very accountable and responsible for my partner’s weight loss and mood in a way that I KNOW is not good for me 😂 So while reading the OP, I was trying to think through some of the things that might be causing me to feel that guilt, since it is not really healthy for me to be wallowing in guilt about another grown-person’s health journey.

    I think you may be projecting. My BF does take responsibility for his own health. I am in no way burdened because he has a little pudge. I don't stay awake feeling like I need to cook healthier so that he can be healthy.

    We are in a healthy relationship where we share and listen to insights the other person might have. I happen to be the one who has more information about weight loss because I've struggled with my weight the most and have done a lot more research for myself. He is just now getting into having to research this and so I was asking for some quick sources that might be helpful--knowing that counting calories/macros is unlikely to be sustainable for him.

    I don't carry the "burden" of doing research for him-- it is something I enjoy looking into. Just like he has things that he is much more interested in (like investing and stock markets) that he shares with me and helps me make decisions.

    It's not a responsibility, it's a joy. He isn't on an island by himself and neither am I. So we can lean on each other in the ways we see fit. If that's not for you, well honestly.. I don't really care.

    Fully admit it’s very possible I’m projecting 😂 but wanted to share the view just in case. You never know when someone’s experience might be helpful to someone else. Glad you have joy together.

    Thanks! Understandable.
  • breefosheebreefoshee Member Posts: 297 Member Member Posts: 297 Member
    kimny72 wrote: »
    breefoshee wrote: »
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.
    PAV8888 wrote: »
    All in all, my thoughts are that if he’s serious about his goals, he should research it himself. It’s an important part of the process of building a lifelong understanding of the topic.

    Occasional help and loving advice is fine, when asked for. But only occasional!

    I am modifying my above advice and suggestions to officially eliminate suggestions on what to cook for him... because YOU @gallicinvasion are right, and there was a forest for the trees moment above :wink:

    I still stick with suggesting to BF that he should stop *kitten-ing* around and start using a proven lifting program that is designed and validated to bring about the results he desires.

    Responding to your "tree advice". You can see above for your "forest" advise.

    I should correct my original post and say that he didn't put on a little weight in his stomach recently-- The past 2 years that I have known him he has had it and been trying to get rid of it. He looks the exact same and has not been "losing muscle and gaining fat" he is the same build hes been. And by pudge, I mean I really mean a small amount.

    I'd also like to make it clear that I think he looks great. I was only asking because I know he would like to change his body composition. I have much further to go than he does. And as far as him to stop "kitten-ing around and using a proven lifting program", he is literally just beginning to look into this. He has been naturally fit his whole life.

    So if you type "proven lifting programs" into the search engine, he will have to take a lot of time sorting through BS to form an educated opinion. Which is why I was asking here.

    With a quick glance I don't see the link posted, so here is a thread that might help if he'd like to get on a solid program.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10332083/which-lifting-program-is-the-best-for-you/p1

    Thanks!!!!! We will look at these!
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