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Transitioning from getting lean to building muscle, need some help!

Discussion in 'Dieting / Supplement Discussion' started by Hazenst, Sep 7, 2010.

  1. Hazenst

    Hazenst Orange Belt

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    So I posted previously about an amateur fight at 155lbs. I needed some serious help, and you guys came through after sorting through my retarded ideas. The bottom line is 155 was a little much for me, cut was hard, and I felt drained. I'd like to add some quality muscle over the next few months and see if 170 is a better fit for me. I'm not expecting some massive muscle gains, as I know it's unrealistic. There's just a bit of difficulty transitioning from one diet to the other, particularly where it is difficult to continue losing fat while gaining muscle. My diet before was great, I felt fine eating it. Occasionally longing for some carbs, but overall it hasn't been too bad. I maintained muscle while burning fat. I've been eating ~2200 calories/day, this was enough to lose 12 pounds over the course of 10 weeks.

    What I was eating, 3-4 meals a day.
    Good proteins (Chicken, Turkey, lean pork/beef, lots of eggs ) ~1.5g/kg of BW
    Good veggies (especially Broccoli)
    1-1.5 servings of fruit a day (typically oranges/apples)
    Low carbs (whole grains), eating them PWO as much as possible.
    Drinking only water and crystal light (I caved for the crystal light, so sick of water)
    No HFCS, few simple sugars, etc.

    I've read what I can about muscle gaining, but frankly there's far more information on weight cutting here.

    I know I need to try to eat smaller more often, but this is particularly difficult with school and work, so it's likely to stay around 3-4 meals a day. I also know I need to eat a lot more calories than 2200. There isn't a whole lot of sticky information on gaining muscle properly (compared to cutting weight), and there aren't real stringent guidelines (calorie wise) because it's a lot more difficult to give flat tips to build rather than go lean.

    As far as dieting goes should I be eating the same type of things, just with more whole grains as calorie fillers and adding in some milk (GOMAD and such, lots of people talking about drinking a ton of milk)? Just eat clean, and do heavy lifts for the best results?

    Any help is much appreciated! Thanks!
     
  2. Steakeater**

    Steakeater** Banned Banned

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    Before everyone says faq

    you need calories first and foremost, and you'll probably benefit in muscle gain by eating a decent amount of carbs. Full muscle and liver glycogen might help with anabolism
     
  3. Graunie

    Graunie Blue Belt

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    Try eating more of what you have been before going to GOMAD. It is for those that can't get enough calories, but you should be able to down 3000 calories in solid food.

    I'm on GOMAD again after going from 140-165ish and back to lean at 160ish. But if 155 was a big cut for you it seams you would jump up close to 170 anyway.

    So I guess I agree with the first reply.
     
  4. Hazenst

    Hazenst Orange Belt

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    Thanks for the replies. I'm really not interested in drinking a gallon of whole milk a day, seems a little rough. So 3000-ish calories is a good amount to start. RMR is probably something like 1800 at my size, so adding in the exercise I should be able to net something like 300-400 calories a day, which is definitely enough to add some size, but is 300/400 a day something reasonable, or should it be more than that?

    I looked at the stickies/FAQ, but like I said, there isn't a whole lot of information for gaining weight. There's a lilttle blurb in the top section, but that's about the extent of it.
     
  5. curb1850

    curb1850 Green Belt

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    If the cut was tough, what weight do you normally walk around at? Should be close to 170 anyway, no?
     
  6. IronMaidenfan#1

    IronMaidenfan#1 Brown Belt

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  7. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Can you explain how you found the FAQs to be an inadequate resource for weight gain? We're always trying to improve these things.
     
  8. pliftkl

    pliftkl Green Belt

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    I think he's lamenting the lack of specific caloric guidelines for gaining weight. When you want to lose weight, there are straightforward ways to start: drop your calories by 10%. I suspect he's looking for similar advice for gaining weight. There's clearly a sweet spot in caloric excess - adding an extra 50 calories a day isn't going to gain you much very quickly, while adding an extra 5000 calories will likely add too much fat.

    I'm not sure what the right answer is, as I'm an advocate of "eat really big and then diet off the fat", rather than "eat more in moderation".
     
  9. junkyard dog

    junkyard dog Orange Belt

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    Adding more fats such as various nut, nut butters and oils is a very good way to add extra calories.

    I would go this route before i tried gomad and good fats are very healthy for you
     
  10. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Well, it breaks down there for me, because I don't believe in counting calories except for a very, very small minority of people. Rather, I believe in "eat a little more/a little less," depending on your goals, evaluating, and making changes from there.

    Counting calories is silly for most people for a lot of reasons. Chiefly, even with weighing and measuring (uggh...), it's hard accurately count the calories of most foods you should be eating (i.e., foods that don't come in single-serve packages with calorie counts).

    And, even if you manage to calculate input accurately, good luck getting output right. You won't.
     
  11. Hazenst

    Hazenst Orange Belt

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    Curb - Yeah, somewhere around 172, which is why I'd like to put on a few pounds of muscle. Obviously other people would be bigger than me at 170 if I didn't.

    Ironmaidenfan - thanks for the links!

    This is more or less what I was having the problem with.

    XTrainer - Now that you've made that point I can see why there aren't guidelines like that. You say make goals, evaluate, and make changes from there, but it seems difficult considering the plateauing/diminishing returns of muscle gain. It seems difficult to know whether I should up my caloric intake after X amount of weeks if my results start to level off (which they will). I've been actively lifting again for ~3 weeks now where I wasn't doing any weightlifting before (as I was only going for muscle maintenance, rather than muscle gain), and have seen some decent results despite my previous diet.
     
  12. pliftkl

    pliftkl Green Belt

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    I don't think it's an issue of counting calories in the sense of trying to make an exact science of it. Telling someone to eat "a little less" is ultimately going to map to some caloric deficit. They don't have to count calories to do that, but they are going to be doing some type of approximation on the calories whether they do the math or not. The problem with "a little more/a little less" is that it's hard to tell what that means.

    Does it mean an extra 6 oz of meat a day for someone who is looking to gain? An extra 6 oz of meat, an extra serving of veggies and a spoon of olive oil?

    Now, certainly one could add these things to the diet, evaluate after a couple weeks, and then adjust. I think the TS is just looking for some reasonable starting point. There are lots of starting points, ranging from GOMAD (2300 extra calories a day) to very modest caloric increases, and I don't think we provide much in the way of guidelines in the FAQ on how to pick where to start (unless it's buried in one of the links that I haven't read in a while).
     
  13. Blackice

    Blackice Orange Belt

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    All I know is that if I had not started counting my calories every single day, I would never have made the gains towards my goal that I have, because I had no clue how many calories I was consuming. I don't care if it's 100% accurate. As long as it's in the ballpark and I have a rough idea of what I'm consuming, I'll stay on the right page. My goal is losing weight whilst retaining as much muscle mass as I can, but if I was bulking I'd do the exact same thing. For me...it's easier to tweak things when I have some idea how much of everything I'm ingesting. I also measure out my food and this has helped me a lot as well. Once I hit my goal I'll relax a little on these things, but I think counting calories and measuring food helps a lot of people get to their goals, and unless you're so into nutrition that you know exactly what you're consuming and percentages of micros. macros etc without calculating and have no problems getting to your goals that way, I think it's a good idea.
     
  14. Gary Peters

    Gary Peters Purple Belt Professional Fighter

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    Fitday.com to track what you eat.

    You don't have to weigh the meat just divide the packages of meat evenly. The sticker if its fresh or bottom of bag if you buy frozen will tell you how many lbs of meat it contains. It may not be exact but its pretty damn close.

    Vegetables/Fruits/Nuts you can measure easily by 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup etc.

    "Building lean muscle with minimal fat" will be about you eating slightly above where you need to maintain weight which will promote slow weight gain. Without counting there is no way to do this accurately.

    Put what you are currently eating into fitday to maintain your weight. Add an additional 400 calories for a week and see what happens. You have to be strict though, if you mess around you will not get an accurate result. Go from there and weigh yourself each morning on an empty stomach.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2010

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