FTM 5'5 206 LBS looking to lose fat and gain a fair amount of muscle

I think body recomposition would be in my best interest, but I don't want to look too big. I want to have broad shoulders and a big back. That's for sure. Legs are too big!!

I think I already have a decent amount of muscle. I just have a high body fat percentage. I'm currently taking in ~1,200 calories a day since I'm trying to lose fat. Does anyone have any tips on how to gain muscle while doing this? I only have dumbells and a few resistance bands. My joints are also... loose, I suppose (I really need to see a doctor about this), so I don't think I should be lifting too many weights until I build more muscle.

Is anyone else in the process of recomp? Do y'all have any tips?

Replies

  • Theoldguy1
    Theoldguy1 Posts: 2,454 Member
    How are you determining you have a decent amount of muscle? Have you been doing resistance programs for a long time and/or have a very physical job?

    Many people overestimate their muscle mass.
  • Retroguy2000
    Retroguy2000 Posts: 1,486 Member
    At a large calorie deficit like yours, over 1,000, you'll be lucky to build any muscle from noob gains, assuming you're new to lifting which it sounds like you are. Your first priority should be weight loss anyway. Lifting is good to help preserve the muscle you have, and get plenty of protein while doing so, but don't expect to gain much if any muscle until you're much closer to maintenance calories.

    As for joints, probably best to get help from a physical therapist there. I bet there are a bunch of exercises you can do with bodyweight and bands and maybe light dumbbells to help strengthen the muscles around whichever joints you're concerned about.
  • jseams1234
    jseams1234 Posts: 1,216 Member
    edited January 8
    So, body recomposition - you want to stay at 206lbs at 5'5"... but you don't want to look too big. lol

    Guess how much this guy weighs and how tall he is:

    oyunef30p8o5.jpg

    5'5" and 185lbs in that picture, 20 less than you are currently. You would be absolutely massive at 200+

    edit: If you are cutting/dieting with that kind of deficit, you are not doing a body recomp. What weight are you targeting?
  • WORMBRO
    WORMBRO Posts: 5 Member
    jseams1234 wrote: »
    So, body recomposition - you want to stay at 206lbs at 5'5"... but you don't want to look too big. lol

    Guess how much this guy weighs and how tall he is:

    oyunef30p8o5.jpg

    5'5" and 185lbs in that picture, 20 less than you are currently. You would be absolutely massive at 200+

    edit: If you are cutting/dieting with that kind of deficit, you are not doing a body recomp. What weight are you targeting?

    I see now that I actually shouldn't do a body recomp. My goal weight is 140-150. This will most likely take ~33 weeks at the rate I'm going. I think I will just try to lose the fat and go from there.

    Thank you for providing that image!! Really put things in perspective for me
  • jseams1234
    jseams1234 Posts: 1,216 Member
    WORMBRO wrote: »
    jseams1234 wrote: »
    So, body recomposition - you want to stay at 206lbs at 5'5"... but you don't want to look too big. lol

    Guess how much this guy weighs and how tall he is:

    oyunef30p8o5.jpg

    5'5" and 185lbs in that picture, 20 less than you are currently. You would be absolutely massive at 200+

    edit: If you are cutting/dieting with that kind of deficit, you are not doing a body recomp. What weight are you targeting?

    I see now that I actually shouldn't do a body recomp. My goal weight is 140-150. This will most likely take ~33 weeks at the rate I'm going. I think I will just try to lose the fat and go from there.

    Thank you for providing that image!! Really put things in perspective for me

    Heh, no problem. I love Franco Columbo - his chest is something out of this world. Guy was a very close friend to Arnold. Anyhow, you might be surprised - sometimes when you get into a groove the weight just seems to melt off. Just take some diet breaks every now and then to keep your sanity. I try to allocate a single day each week and then go crazy at BonChon and eat all the Korean fried chicken. I really look forward to that day when I'm deep into a cut and they don't seem to have much, if any, impact on my cutting/diet progress.

    Just remember when you finally get to a place where you are happy with what you have done, to come back and show off your progress - it really does help to motivate others who may be in a similar place in their journey.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 31,953 Member
    WORMBRO wrote: »
    jseams1234 wrote: »
    So, body recomposition - you want to stay at 206lbs at 5'5"... but you don't want to look too big. lol

    Guess how much this guy weighs and how tall he is:

    oyunef30p8o5.jpg

    5'5" and 185lbs in that picture, 20 less than you are currently. You would be absolutely massive at 200+

    edit: If you are cutting/dieting with that kind of deficit, you are not doing a body recomp. What weight are you targeting?

    I see now that I actually shouldn't do a body recomp. My goal weight is 140-150. This will most likely take ~33 weeks at the rate I'm going. I think I will just try to lose the fat and go from there.

    Thank you for providing that image!! Really put things in perspective for me

    Good plan.

    I hope you're still thinking in terms of beginning a strength training program alongside weight loss, if you have the emotional energy and time to do both. Strength training now will help you keep existing muscle as you lose fat, at minimum, and give you a better base to work with when you near goal weight. If you're on T at this point for transition, you may even find a slow strength or even muscle gain, if you're lucky, plus doing progressive strength training, getting overall good nutrition (especially but not exclusively ample protein), and not trying to lose weight super fast.

    I've seen a bunch of people here say they wish they'd started strength training sooner during weight loss, ideally right from the start. I'm not saying it can't happen, but I've literally never seen anyone say they wish they'd waited.

    FWIW, I'm also 5'5", but F birth/identity, with more muscle mass than average for my demographic (which is realistically old, so I'm maybe not claiming a lot, there). These days, I weigh in the low 130s pounds, was maybe a little lighter than that in my profile photo.

    I don't know how far you are into transition, but it would be extremely unusual for a woman (any age) at 5'5" to have so muscle that your goal weight of 140-150 is irrationally low. There's one woman here our height, pretty much solid muscle from long-term hard training, who usually seems to be somewhere in the 150s pounds and lean at that weight. That's unusual. I'm not saying that applies to you, given your transition . . . but if you don't have a long-term record of heavy lifting (or T), that's maybe another sort of reality check. (I'm not going to name a 3rd party here, apologies.)

    You have a lot of potential up-side when it comes to muscle gain in your circumstances. Wishing you success!
  • WORMBRO
    WORMBRO Posts: 5 Member
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    WORMBRO wrote: »
    jseams1234 wrote: »
    So, body recomposition - you want to stay at 206lbs at 5'5"... but you don't want to look too big. lol

    Guess how much this guy weighs and how tall he is:

    oyunef30p8o5.jpg

    5'5" and 185lbs in that picture, 20 less than you are currently. You would be absolutely massive at 200+

    edit: If you are cutting/dieting with that kind of deficit, you are not doing a body recomp. What weight are you targeting?

    I see now that I actually shouldn't do a body recomp. My goal weight is 140-150. This will most likely take ~33 weeks at the rate I'm going. I think I will just try to lose the fat and go from there.

    Thank you for providing that image!! Really put things in perspective for me

    Good plan.

    I hope you're still thinking in terms of beginning a strength training program alongside weight loss, if you have the emotional energy and time to do both. Strength training now will help you keep existing muscle as you lose fat, at minimum, and give you a better base to work with when you near goal weight. If you're on T at this point for transition, you may even find a slow strength or even muscle gain, if you're lucky, plus doing progressive strength training, getting overall good nutrition (especially but not exclusively ample protein), and not trying to lose weight super fast.

    I've seen a bunch of people here say they wish they'd started strength training sooner during weight loss, ideally right from the start. I'm not saying it can't happen, but I've literally never seen anyone say they wish they'd waited.

    FWIW, I'm also 5'5", but F birth/identity, with more muscle mass than average for my demographic (which is realistically old, so I'm maybe not claiming a lot, there). These days, I weigh in the low 130s pounds, was maybe a little lighter than that in my profile photo.

    I don't know how far you are into transition, but it would be extremely unusual for a woman (any age) at 5'5" to have so muscle that your goal weight of 140-150 is irrationally low. There's one woman here our height, pretty much solid muscle from long-term hard training, who usually seems to be somewhere in the 150s pounds and lean at that weight. That's unusual. I'm not saying that applies to you, given your transition . . . but if you don't have a long-term record of heavy lifting (or T), that's maybe another sort of reality check. (I'm not going to name a 3rd party here, apologies.)

    You have a lot of potential up-side when it comes to muscle gain in your circumstances. Wishing you success!

    Thank you for this information!! I actually am looking into strength training due to a disorder I have. I've also heard that it could help with the loose joints.

    I was on testosterone a few years ago, but I had to stop due to health complications. However, I kinda won the genetic lottery in a way since I have higher than average T levels for a biological female. I was more muscular than the boys in my grade when I was an 8th grader, haha. I can say the same for this school year as well. Now I'm just shorter than them lol.

    I was looking through some pictures of men around my height, and I think I could still look pretty big at 140 if I focus on my upper back and shoulder area once I lose weight.

    If all goes as planned, I should be on testosterone again this year, and actually get top surgery!! Thank you for the recommendation for starting strength training :smiley: