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I like my weight, but want more muscle. What's the secret?

I lift or train everyday. Initially I lost 2 lbs. but now after 4 weeks I've gained a net 5 lbs. i understand muscle vs fat, but prefer to stay the slim svelt dude I am.


  • Jcl81
    Jcl81 Posts: 154 Member
    Realistic goals when being a natural lifter.

    The secrets.
  • wmealing
    wmealing Posts: 2 Member
    Now the yoga poster platitudes are out of the way, I think you mean "I like being low bodyfat but i want more muscle". The simple fact of the matter is that you need the calories/kilojoules/energy there for when you do lift, the protein and nutrients to build the muscles to be available while they repair.

    This -does- mean having a caloric excess and will mean eating a higher protein diet. This -does- mean that you will be putting on some extra fat as you gain muscle. Most bodybuilders/lifters call this process a "Bulk", which is then followed by a cycle known as a cut. The "cut" part of the cycle will be a caloric deficit in which you are likely already familiar with.

    This bulk/cut cycle means that there may be periods of months on either cutting or bulking.

    You also want to be doing strength exercises, which means low repetition count of progressively heavier weights. Cardio work is counteractive to muscle gains, I only do light cardio (5 minutes) while warming up.

    I also believe that going to the gym every day is likely overkill and you are not giving your muscles time to repair (this is when they 'grow'). I strongly recommend a rest day between each day at the gym.

    I could spend time linking studies. I don't believe I'm saying anything too outlandish.


    - Find a lifting program that isn't rubbish. (Starting strength is highly recommended)
    - Stick to the program
    - Eat excessive calories while you gain muscle
    - Eat reduced calorie while you reduce body fat (don't expect muscle/strength gains during this time)

    All of this may not fit your optimal world view of remaining the 'slim svelte dude' and there is good chance you'll ignore this advice, i'm posting this in hope that you will listen.
  • MamaMenorca
    MamaMenorca Posts: 22 Member
    What do you mean by "I want more muscle" but "want to stay the slim svelt dude..."? Do you mean you want more muscle definition and strength, and not bulk? I am assuming that. You can tone your muscles, get good definition with out really getting bulky and big. If you are looking to bulk, you want heavy weight, low reps. BUT, if you are looking to just build strength and LEAN muscle mass, then stick to "lower" (don't go too low where you are doing nothing) weights and higher reps (generally 12-15). Also, body weight exercises are great. You don't have to add weight to build/strengthen muscle. Keep up with the cardio, especially HIIT workouts, 30-45 minutes 3-4 days a week should be good... feel free to do more BUT you need to take at least one, preferably two rest days per week!! Rest days allow your muscles to repair and therefore build. If you continue to stress them and never allow them to recover, you will only end up with injuries.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,809 Member
    No you don't have to do bulk / cut cycles.

    The "secret" is train hard and eat the right amount of calories to maintain your weight - not really much of a secret at all.

    Recomposition (losing fat while gaining muscle) all starts with your training, that's where your focus needs to be.