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Thread: A few questions regarding losing weight and gaining muscle

  1. #1
    Weak Mofo
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    A few questions regarding losing weight and gaining muscle

    I'm new to body building, so I'm about to newb it up.

    Basically what I'm trying to do right now, mainly, is lose weight. I'm trying to get most of the fat off my body, which isn't too much more. I'm 6'3, 185, but I don't have much muscle. I think the last time I benched I could only do 140, something like that. So obviously I want to improve on this, but getting all the fat off me has been my goal for the past two years, and I've already lost 55 pounds. Anyways, I'm wondering if its possible to gain muscle at the same time as losing weight; because if I'm understanding correctly, to lose weight you need to eat less calories (duh) and to gain muscle you need more calories.

    Yeah... I'm just a little confused.

    thanks!!

    EDIT: I read through some other threads and I've read that it's very hard to lose weight and gain muscle at the same time. I really want the fat off me, so would it be good to just focus on that first before I go for the muscle mass? And it wouldn't hurt to lift while losing fat anyways right; as in I wont gain as much muscle while losing weight but it still wouldn't hurt?

    EDIT: another question..... I want to gain toned muscle, i dont want just mass, i want very toned defined strong muscles. what is the best way to go about this?
    Last edited by Mike S; 05-28-2009 at 11:09 PM.

  2. #2
    squat rack curler platypus's Avatar
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    you eat more calories to gain weight which you then replace with muscle. so basically, eat a lot, lift a lot, and work in cardio.

  3. #3
    Weak Mofo
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    yeah...i came across this "your first cut" document and it's definitely gonna help me out alot.

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    Da Bears slashkills's Avatar
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    I would look into high intensity training or HIT for short.

  5. #5
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    I'm in your shoes too Mike. I'm 5'10 and 280lbs. I have quite a bit of fat I'd like to lose. I wasn't sure if I wanted to bulk first then cut, cut then bulk or if there was a way to gain muscle and lose weight at the same time.

    After reading countless forums on a lot of sites, I came to the conclusion that unless your just starting out, it's not really going to happen to any large degree. At 6'3 and 185lbs, it would seem like bulking would be good for you. It'll probably be easier for you to lose the extra fat once you have 20-30lbs of added mass to help sear off the fat with you increased BMR.

    I'm no expert, just my opinion.

  6. #6
    Must...work...out... nockits's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    I'm new to body building, so I'm about to newb it up.

    Basically what I'm trying to do right now, mainly, is lose weight. I'm trying to get most of the fat off my body, which isn't too much more. I'm 6'3, 185, but I don't have much muscle. I think the last time I benched I could only do 140, something like that. So obviously I want to improve on this, but getting all the fat off me has been my goal for the past two years, and I've already lost 55 pounds. Anyways, I'm wondering if its possible to gain muscle at the same time as losing weight; because if I'm understanding correctly, to lose weight you need to eat less calories (duh) and to gain muscle you need more calories.

    Yeah... I'm just a little confused.

    thanks!!

    EDIT: I read through some other threads and I've read that it's very hard to lose weight and gain muscle at the same time. I really want the fat off me, so would it be good to just focus on that first before I go for the muscle mass? And it wouldn't hurt to lift while losing fat anyways right; as in I wont gain as much muscle while losing weight but it still wouldn't hurt?

    EDIT: another question..... I want to gain toned muscle, i dont want just mass, i want very toned defined strong muscles. what is the best way to go about this?
    good, you got the more/less calorie part right. that's a start. the type of foods you eat make a difference here too, eat a clean diet and you're on the right track.
    keep in mind that gaining muscle will result in some amount of fat loss, as it's used in the process. other than diet, you can add some low intensity cardio to the end of your workout, or on off days, to burn extra calories.
    i'm on a bulking and cutting phase right now, doing both at the same time. keep in mind that it IS possible, it will just take a longer time, and therefore is harder because you need to be constantly dedicated to your diet, and your workout routine.
    good luck!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skalami View Post
    I just give the worked on muscle group tough riddles before my workouts... or sometimes I'll tell them we're going to the park and then go to the gym, or visa versa. They start to catch on so you have to tell the truth every so often.
    *While on the topic of muscle confusion, and how often a routine needs to be changed.*

  7. #7
    The Flyfisher rbtrout's Avatar
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    Unless you're very heavy, it's quite hard to do at the same time. At 6'3 and 185, I doubt you have that much fat. BUT, diet is key. Lift hard and heavy, some cardio, don't forget to sleep and you'll do alright.
    Give chalk a chance.


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  8. #8
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    you can lose weight and gain muscle at same time. Just rip that **** up in the weight room. Like go balls out man. You have to be a madman though with the weights and have your diet pretty clean and tight (hover like 200-300 calories above maintenance and fat will melt off and strength will go up).

  9. #9
    Weak Mofo
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    Mathilas - True, at 185 bulking probably would be the better way to go. But at the same time before I started becoming interested in weight lifting I had the goal to get nearly all the fat off my body and I just really want to accomplish that goal.

    Nockits - Thanks for the info man. I'm relieved to hear you can lose weight and build muscle at the same time; this is what I intend on doing then. The only challenge for me is going to be getting my diet together. I tend to mostly eat healthy, but I've never counted carbs or ate specific foods, whenever I was hungry I just found something that was healthy and I ate it; and I lost 55 pounds doing that, ha, (on top of running two miles and biking 20 miles a day, literally...) I'm gonna work on it, thank you again for the info!

    rbtrout - Thanks. Like I said to Mathilas, I'm just really am going for getting all the fat off me as my primary goal. I could start bulking now but I want to accomplish that first.

    samadhi_smiles - Hell yeah I'm ready to tear that **** up! Again, good to hear I can do both at the same time! Thanks

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    Basically what I'm trying to do right now, mainly, is lose weight. I'm trying to get most of the fat off my body, which isn't too much more. I'm 6'3, 185, but I don't have much muscle. I think the last time I benched I could only do 140, something like that. So obviously I want to improve on this, but getting all the fat off me has been my goal for the past two years, and I've already lost 55 pounds.

    Anyways, I'm wondering if its possible to gain muscle at the same time as losing weight
    It is possible for beginners especially if they have a lot of fat. But, you're 6'3", weight 185 and can only bench 140.

    Just curious, why do you want to loose more weight? Personally, my advice to you as a beginner would be to train ( and eat ) for strength, and everything else will fall into place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    Yeah... I'm just a little confused.
    You're a beginner, keep it simple.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    EDIT: I read through some other threads and I've read that it's very hard to lose weight and gain muscle at the same time. I really want the fat off me.
    Muscle burns fat, but you don't have much muscle. If you try to drop even more body fat you'll run the risk of losing the rest of little muscle you have too and end up skinny and really weak. If you want to be weak, go for it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    EDIT: another question..... I want to gain toned muscle, i dont want just mass, i want very toned defined strong muscles. what is the best way to go about this?
    That is why you do bulking/cutting cycles. You bulk to build muscle ( and yes you'll add some fat ) but that muscle will help you burn fat when you cut and if you're diet is right you'll minimize the muscle you loose while cutting. But if you try to cut without much muscle to start with, IMHO you're just going to end up weak ( and look weak too ).

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    rbtrout - Thanks. Like I said to Mathilas, I'm just really am going for getting all the fat off me as my primary goal. I could start bulking now but I want to accomplish that first.
    That's fine if that's your goal, just know that you'll end up even weaker. rbtrout's advice, ie "Lift hard and heavy, some cardio, don't forget to sleep and you'll do alright." is basically what I'm trying to say, keep it simple. You're worried about things that IMHO will inhibit your long term progress, but that's just my opinion ( ie a really tall guy who's learned how to build muscle ).

    Good luck.
    Last edited by BigTallOx; 05-29-2009 at 12:13 PM.

  11. #11
    Weak Mofo
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigTallOx View Post
    Muscle burns fat, but you don't have much muscle. If you try to drop even more body fat you'll run the risk of losing the rest of little muscle you have too and end up skinny and really weak. If you want to be weak, go for it.
    I want to get the fat off, but at the same time it has to possible to ATLEAST keep the majority of the muscle I already have, am I right?
    Last edited by Mike S; 05-29-2009 at 12:13 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    I want to get the fat off, but at the same time it has to possible to ATLEAST keep the majority of the muscle I already have, am I right?
    I'm not going to say it's impossible, its probably easier for a beginner, but if that's your goal, IMHO you're setting yourself up for failure and ultimately becomming weaker.

  13. #13
    Weak Mofo
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    I suppose only time will tell then.

  14. #14
    DeaTH BeFoRe WeaKNeSs sCaRz*Of*PaiN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by platypus View Post
    you eat more calories to gain weight which you then replace with muscle. so basically, eat a lot, lift a lot, and work in cardio.
    Fat doesn't turn into muscle if that's what you're implying.
    "The only easy day was yesterday."

  15. #15
    Weak Mofo
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    I have another question. People have told me that to build "volume" as in like, size of muscle, you want to lift heavy with less reps. I've also heard to build "volume" you want to do the opposite: more reps. I've heard that to build definition and strength you want more reps, and to build volume you want less reps, but doing the less reps wont make you as strong as doing more reps etc... I've checked websites and I've gotten so many different answers to this.

    So can someone clear this up for me?
    Is there a difference between volume/definition/strength?
    Is there different ways to go about attaining them if there is a difference?

  16. #16
    IRL my name is Trent Hazerboy's Avatar
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    Post a picture of yourself as well as your best squat and deadlift and we'll be able to tell you how doable this is, and whether it would be more beneficial to lose some more weight or just gain muscle. Can you see your abs when you flex? if so you'd probably benefit from just gaining muscle.

    Post a picture.

    Body recomposition like you've stated (gaining muscle, losing fat) is difficult, though is drastically easier depending on your experience. Assuming your body fat percentage is still in the double digits, I'm willing to bet its very possible for you, especially considering that you're still a beginner.

    Now, in terms of how any muscle you've gained will LOOK, this has very, very little to do with what sort of rep range or routine you're on for your level. If you're a professional body builder you'll worry about this sort of thing, but for the average joe (or in your case, a beginner) I'm pretty certain it doesn't mean a damn thing. If you have put on muscle, there will be close to zero difference in the "look," "feel," "volume," or however you want to describe it, of the muscle put on using a 1-5 rep range versus an 8-12 rep range. Yes, there are fast twicht and slow twitch muscle fibers, and muscles trained in a certain rep range will be in a more constant state of tension ( what "toned" really means), though unless you're 220 lbs, 5'9, and 5% bodyfat, no one is going to be able to tell the difference.

    NOW, definition, or what most people call looking "toned," also has very little to do with what sort of rep range you've trained in. Once again, this probably diverges for the advanced bodybuilder, but for your level you don't have to worry about it. Looking "toned" or "defined" is having a low bodyfat percentage with a large amount of muscle. Its as simple as that. There is no "magic" rep range that will get you there, just find a way to gain muscle, then lose some fat while retaining this muscle, and you will look toned.

    Just look at dave tate. He trained as a powerlifter his whole life--very, very strong dude-- but was also a pretty fat guy. In his later years, he cleaned up his diet, lost some weight, and went from...



    Does he have the body of an elite bodybuilder? No. But it's vastly superior to most everyone on this site, and he got that way by training in a lower rep range for years and years on squats, deadlifts, and bench (with a higher rep range for accessory stuff), then cutting bodyfat with his diet. His training changed if I'm not mistaken, though this was only because his joints couldn't take the abuse anymore - he didn't start suddenly training with 3x8 or 4x12 then get ripped.


    If you're really interested in body recompisition, I would look into carb cycling. Do a search on this website or buy a book about it. Next look into what sort of routine you're on -- does it involve squats, deadlifts, bench press, and some sort of pulling movement (pull ups, chin ups, or rows?). If it does not, it needs to. Get on wannabebig 1.1 (on this site) or buy the book starting strength and stick to the routines untill you've got some decent squat, bench, and deadlift numbers, then if you want switch to a more bodybuilding oriented routine.

    Not to toot my own horn, but this is 1000$ advice for a beginner, take it. It took me two years to learn these basic things.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    I have another question. People have told me that to build "volume" as in like, size of muscle, you want to lift heavy with less reps. I've also heard to build "volume" you want to do the opposite: more reps. I've heard that to build definition and strength you want more reps, and to build volume you want less reps, but doing the less reps wont make you as strong as doing more reps etc... I've checked websites and I've gotten so many different answers to this.

    So can someone clear this up for me?
    Is there a difference between volume/definition/strength?
    Is there different ways to go about attaining them if there is a difference?
    You're making it much more complicated than it needs to be for a beginner. Keep it simple, find a good pre-defined routine and just do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hazerboy View Post
    Get on wannabebig 1.1 (on this site) or buy the book starting strength and stick to the routines untill you've got some decent squat, bench, and deadlift numbers, then if you want switch to a more bodybuilding oriented routine.
    Exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hazerboy View Post
    Not to toot my own horn, but this is 1000$ advice for a beginner, take it. It took me two years to learn these basic things.
    To the OP, he speaks the truth. And, actually two years to "get it" is pretty good, it took me a lot longer.
    Last edited by BigTallOx; 05-29-2009 at 01:36 PM.

  18. #18
    Weak Mofo
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hazerboy View Post
    Can you see your abs when you flex? if so you'd probably benefit from just gaining muscle.
    No, I cannot see them. I have flab. I can grab a handfull of fat on my stomach standing up. That is what makes me want to lose the fat...along side the man boobs. I can feel the abs if I rub my stomach, but I've never been able to see them before in my life. Another reason I really want to get it off is because I have a thyroid disorder (graves disease) and im hypo(slow) thyroid. So losing weight for me has been a great challenge and I've lost 55 so far. I don't know, but I really just want it off.


    Quote Originally Posted by Hazerboy View Post
    If you're really interested in body recompisition, I would look into carb cycling. Do a search on this website or buy a book about it. Next look into what sort of routine you're on -- does it involve squats, deadlifts, bench press, and some sort of pulling movement (pull ups, chin ups, or rows?). If it does not, it needs to. Get on wannabebig 1.1 (on this site) or buy the book starting strength and stick to the routines untill you've got some decent squat, bench, and deadlift numbers, then if you want switch to a more bodybuilding oriented routine.

    Not to toot my own horn, but this is 1000$ advice for a beginner, take it. It took me two years to learn these basic things.
    I really appreciate the advice. I will look at this no doubt.

  19. #19
    Must...work...out... nockits's Avatar
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    im surprised that at your height and weight, you state that you have that much flab. but everyone's different.
    hazerboy's post was excellent, definitely read, and re-read everything he just said.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skalami View Post
    I just give the worked on muscle group tough riddles before my workouts... or sometimes I'll tell them we're going to the park and then go to the gym, or visa versa. They start to catch on so you have to tell the truth every so often.
    *While on the topic of muscle confusion, and how often a routine needs to be changed.*

  20. #20
    Weak Mofo
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    Quote Originally Posted by nockits View Post
    im surprised that at your height and weight, you state that you have that much flab. but everyone's different.
    hazerboy's post was excellent, definitely read, and re-read everything he just said.
    I will

    And lot's of people have said that. With a shirt on a look skinny mostly; people don't believe I have any flab, but when I take it off they're like oh, you do.... I've been to the doctors for physicals at 185 and have been told to lose weight. So I'm unsure of what to do at this point

    EDIT: By the way, when I say flab, I don't mean like, hang over the pants flab (unless I sit down), but I can grab it and it jiggles.. so yeah.
    Last edited by Mike S; 05-29-2009 at 03:08 PM.

  21. #21
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    Kind of a tricky question but anyways here is my 2 cent. at 6 3 185 and your current strength level, I recommend just lifting hard and heavy with normal eating.

    Reason being is you're not very strong right now so losing more weight with no muscle will just mean being skinny. Build a foundation by getting stronger with normal eating and you physique will become more chiseled looking. Gaining muscle should help burn off the calories even at a resting state.
    Last edited by blackboard; 05-29-2009 at 03:21 PM.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    And lot's of people have said that. With a shirt on a look skinny mostly; people don't believe I have any flab, but when I take it off they're like oh, you do.... I've been to the doctors for physicals at 185 and have been told to lose weight.
    It's because you don't have enough muscle.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
    So I'm unsure of what to do at this point
    Are you sure, or it's just (some) people didn't tell you want you wanted to hear. It seems so clear to me what you should do. Here's even another person saying it...

    Quote Originally Posted by blackboard View Post
    (snip)You're not very strong right now so losing more weight with no muscle will just mean being skinny. Build a foundation by getting stronger with normal eating and you physique will become more chiseled looking.
    To the OP, I don't think there's really anything else to say at this point. Good luck.
    Last edited by BigTallOx; 05-29-2009 at 03:24 PM.

  23. #23
    Weak Mofo
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    Here's a picture.


  24. #24
    Senior Member tom183's Avatar
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    I dont think cutting should be your priority right now.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by tom183 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by BigTallOx View Post
    To the OP, I don't think there's really anything else to say at this point.
    I dont think cutting should be your priority right now.
    OK, I have one more thing to say...

    No kidding. It's hard to believe he's even considering it. This is the wannabebig board not the Iwantanorexia board.
    Last edited by BigTallOx; 05-29-2009 at 06:11 PM.

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