Eat at Maintaince or Slight Surplus?

Hey Everyone

I reached my goal weight a few months ago and have successfully maintained while eating at maintenance for a month. I lost a total of 56 pounds, so I want to maintain until my weight loss averages out to 1 pound a week. That will come in August.

I am happy with my weight, so my focus will be on getting stronger and staying lean. I realize that in order to get stronger you need to eat more, which of course adds the fat gain as well. I want to limit the fat gain as much as possible, so I'm wondering what is the best way to do this? Should i continue eat at the MFP suggested calorie level or should I add like an extra 125 calories per day (gain .25 lbs a week)? I plan on lifting 3-4 days a week, one rest day and 2-3 cardio days. Probably going to follow the 5/3/1.

Again, the goal is to get stronger and stay lean. I just want to know it is necessary to add extra calories to do so. I realize a lack of a surplus will make the gains slow, but I'm ok with that.

Thoughts?

Replies

  • Bizurke51
    Bizurke51 Posts: 190 Member
    BUMP
  • giantrobot_powerlifting
    giantrobot_powerlifting Posts: 2,600 Member
    edited July 2015
    If your BF is around 10% I say go bulk yourself. Not sure on how you much you will actually gain on that little of surplus (250 is probably much better and the usual recommendation for a clean bulk), but give it shot and be open to adding more calories if your not seeing the gain train at the station.
  • Bizurke51
    Bizurke51 Posts: 190 Member
    I don't think my FB% is that low, probably closer to 20. Thats why fat is a concern.
  • Brolympus
    Brolympus Posts: 360 Member
    edited July 2015
    Lack of a surplus will make gains non-existent, not slow. You might have strength gains, because your nervous system will learn how to recruit more already existing muscle fiber, but this will eventually taper off because you won't be able to build any new muscle. You body needs excess calories to synthesize new fibers.

    I understand gaining weight after working so hard to lose it might be a mental battle, but you have to realize some fat gain is inevitable when building muscle. You have to be in a calorie surplus. I promise it takes far less time to cut fat than build muscle, so there is a positive side to the story.

    I think you should be more realistic with your expectations with logging also. You need to accept the fact that you are going to have a logging error (including differences in daily activity cals, exercise cals, errors in food logging) of at least+/-10% of your daily calorie goal, which is at least 200 calls for most people, you will see it is impossible or at least completely OCD to maintain a calorie surplus that small. You just can't do it consistently, and honestly, if you spend the time trying to keep it controlled that tightly, it will drive you nuts.

    Ask Scooby what your bulk TDEE should be, and stick to it if you seriously want to gain. You could always opt for a recomp also (the gain muscle, lose fat option), but realize it will take a very, very long time to get stronger this way over traditional bulking/cutting: scoobysworkshop.com/accurate-calorie-calculator/

    Hope this helps
  • Bizurke51
    Bizurke51 Posts: 190 Member
    I do seriously want to gain, but I'm willing to take it slow. maybe the 125 won't be enough, then I'll up to 250 and so on until I find what works. I just don't see the point of doing a hard core bulk of adding 20lbs two months with it being 50/50 muscle/fat. I'd rather go 10lbs with it being 75/25.
  • Bizurke51
    Bizurke51 Posts: 190 Member
    bump