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Thread: Bulking up then Dieting down, more harm than good.

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Allen Cress's Avatar
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    Bulking up then Dieting down, more harm than good.

    It amazes me how physique athletes cling to old concepts. The bulk up thing is not as beneficial as many may think. Everyone knows that dieting should be about fat loss not weight loss, and about muscle preservation. Yet how many times do you hear someone say “I will bulk up to this much and then diet down to this much weight”. We know the scale only gives a number, and that number does not reflect Lean Muscle, Fat Weight, or Water Weight. It is just a number.

    Anabolically it makes much more sense to keep body fat levels in a decently lower range all year long and to function as an athlete. Extra, non-functional body weight is just added metabolic stress that serves no purpose.

    Bodybuilders seem to forget that carrying around 50-60 lbs of lean mass gained through years of training is ALREADY a metabolic stress. It’s already “bulked up” weight. It’s more weight than you were naturally meant to carry around. So when they “bulk up” even more their metabolisms are under severe strain and can’t keep up and it also causes strain on the cardiovascular system. For example there are way too many bodybuilders with sleep apnea.

    Then when it comes time to dieting down , with all the enormous strain on their systems, systemically speaking, they must sacrifice quality mass, that otherwise would have been sustainable, had their weight not got out of hand. Then there is the whole health side of it.

    Bulking up is like yo-yo dieting. The problem here isn’t just that fat gets more stubborn to come off, but the type of fat you gain is the more dangerous. Visceral fat is also the most dangerous fat health wise. It is the fat that surrounds the organs. It’s been proven that yo-yo dieters gain more and more visceral fat as a percentage of absolute weight, as time goes on, and they go through more and more cycles of dieting and bulking. And Physique athletes who get lean, then get fat, are indeed Yo-Yo dieters. It has the same Metabolic Consequences.

    So think about this during your off season when you only judge things by the scale and not by the mirror and the bio-feedback clues your body is sending you that you are at a point where the weight you are gaining is non-functional and doing more harm than good.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Paulo_Santos's Avatar
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    Allen, great read. I'm one of those tweaner guys. I'm 5'7" 170# and around 15% BF. I would like to get down to 10% BF, but I don't know if I should go on a slow cut or go on a slow bulk and then a slow cut. I don't believe in the traditional huge bulk and then cut down. I like your method, but I just don't know what to do.

    My current routine is Westside mixed with running like Alex Viada posted on his routine. I do compete in powerlifting and would prefer to stay in the 165# class, but I'm not set on that.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Allen Cress's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paulo_Santos View Post
    Allen, great read. I'm one of those tweaner guys. I'm 5'7" 170# and around 15% BF. I would like to get down to 10% BF, but I don't know if I should go on a slow cut or go on a slow bulk and then a slow cut. I don't believe in the traditional huge bulk and then cut down. I like your method, but I just don't know what to do.

    My current routine is Westside mixed with running like Alex Viada posted on his routine. I do compete in powerlifting and would prefer to stay in the 165# class, but I'm not set on that.
    For powerlifting anywhere between 12-15% is fine. I really wouldn't recommend dropping to 10% as that's not optimal for your sport unless that is easily maintained. There is no black and white answer as it depends on what you are currently doing, how your body utilizes each macro, etc..

  4. #4
    Senior Member Paulo_Santos's Avatar
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    I just wanted to loose some fat from my belly. That is where most of it is. My legs are very lean, but my stomach and upper body is carrying some extra fat. I've been on a very slow cut for the last few weeks to see if that works.

  5. #5
    260(-62) from 193 from 275
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    So what is the alternative?

    I know I certainly regret my last bulk. I went from 192 to 260 and it's taken me years to shed it due to (random) injuries. In fact now 6 years later I'm at 198.

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  6. #6
    Senior Member Allen Cress's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Holto View Post
    So what is the alternative?

    I know I certainly regret my last bulk. I went from 192 to 260 and it's taken me years to shed it due to (random) injuries. In fact now 6 years later I'm at 198.
    To gain slowly and have phases where you just maintain a certain weight for a period of time, don't just look to increase scale weight. Go by the mirror and bio-feedback.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Paulo_Santos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Cress View Post
    To gain slowly and have phases where you just maintain a certain weight for a period of time, don't just look to increase scale weight. Go by the mirror and bio-feedback.
    Makes sense.

  8. #8
    Senior Member RichMcGuire's Avatar
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    Nice post.
    First Bulk pics VS Starting pics, take a look!! http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...=1#post1616109

    Progress pics of a cut using bodyweight only movements http://www.wannabebig.com/forums/sho...45#post2405745

    Generally, if you read a piece of advice on the internet, assume it's wrong until proven otherwise. This applies especially to "conventional wisdom". -Belial

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