Should I Bulk Or Cut And For How Long Of Each?

Discussion in 'General Training' started by Jacob Morrow, Nov 1, 2016.

  1. Jacob Morrow

    Jacob Morrow New Member

    I feel like I am in the middle of fat, muscular, and skinny. I can't make up my mind. I bulk for like 3 weeks and give up and then go on a cut again. Should I keep cutting? Should I bulk? HELP!!!!

    Attached Files:

  2. Lol

    Lol Super Moderator Staff Member

    What are your stats: height, weight, loads for main compound lift etc?
    My opinion is you need to add mass but I'd advise getting down to about 10% b/f before you start to do so.
  3. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

  4. Jacob Morrow

    Jacob Morrow New Member

    I am 5'-6" tall. I weigh 159 LBS. I believe I am about 10-12% body fat. My Chest is 40 in and my arms are 13.5
    Do you know how long I should bulk? Every time I bulk I get discouraged because my abs disappear.
  5. mickc1965

    mickc1965 Well-Known Member

    I would recommend that you try to add on average approximately 0.5lb per week until you get to say 15%, so assuming you are 12% and 50% of weight gain is fat then you would continue until you are ~172 lbs so that would be approximately 6 months then start to cut at 1-2lbs per week back down to ~10% and repeat.

    Alternatively cut now to sub 10% then start to gain mass slowly as above, you could always gain at a quicker rate but bear in mind this will probably add more fat than muscle unless you are genetically gifted or chemically assisted.
    adpowah likes this.
  6. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

    Get some calipers and measure with those to determine bodyfat percentage. It will still be an estimate but as long as you use the same method each time, it will be good enough.

    You could bulk from where you are at. It really just depends on what you prefer. If abs are important then I would suggest cutting now. Hard to say without seeing legs, but that's probably more like 15%, could even be as high as 17 or 18 % bodyfat depending on how you carry your fat. Cut 10 - 15 lbs first then start bulking. If you didn't read that article I linked to, do so and follow Lyle's recommendations for bulking i.e. start eating ~17 calories per lb of bodyweight and bulk until your calipers read about 15% bodyfat.

    Bulking for 3 weeks is a waste of time. You need to bulk for at least an entire cycle. That should be at least 6 weeks, preferably 8-12 weeks. Spend a couple weeks at your new maintenance after that before cutting back down. Don't look at your abs when you are bulking. They will get blurry and maybe go away for a while. Big whoop. As long as you don't go too crazy with the bulking, and as long as you can stick to the cut, they will be back soon enough. That's if you absolutely have to cut that frequently to keep the abs.
    Done intelligently, you should be able to bulk for a good 6 months as Mick suggested.
    adpowah likes this.
  7. Jacob Morrow

    Jacob Morrow New Member

    They calipers measure right at 10% body fat.
    I will bulk for 6 weeks and then cut it off.
  8. mickc1965

    mickc1965 Well-Known Member

    @Jacob Morrow

    Only a 6 week bulk, how much are you intending on gaining over the 6 weeks? Based on your fear of getting 'fat' I assume that it will not be at a rate of 2lb per week, is that correct?

    Assuming you have a p-ratio of 1:1 your body fat levels after 6 weeks would be as follows (based on 159lbs @ 10% today)

    0.5lbs per week = 162lbs @ 10.74%
    1.0lb per week = 165lbs @ 11.45%
    1.5lbs per week = 168lbs @ 12.14%
    2.0lbs per week = 171lbs @ 12.81%

    I wouldn't consider any of these levels too high in terms of body fat and would strongly recommend that you bulk to say 175lbs (13.66%) before considering cutting again, better still I would recommend a mass gain phase (lean bulk) eating at approximately 200-300 kcals over your maintenance levels with the intention to gain 0.5lbs per week up to 170-175 lbs giving you 22-32 weeks of gains (albeit slow) and then cut back to 10%. I spent all of this year (up until end of September) slowly losing weight (189lbs down to 159.6lbs) which upon reflection was a bit daft, from now on I will 'lean bulk' up to a maximum of 175 (min 170) with an average weekly weight gain of 0.5lbs then cut to probably 165 for summer 2017.
  9. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

  10. Jacob Morrow

    Jacob Morrow New Member

    My bad, I meant to say 6 months. That will give me plenty of time to cut before summer. That makes a lot of sense. Thanks guys!
  11. mickc1965

    mickc1965 Well-Known Member

    That's better, good luck
  12. Mojo77

    Mojo77 Member

    Last edited: Nov 12, 2016

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