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Thread: I'm totally out of shape, should I start with a cutting phase or bulking?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
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    10

    Default I'm totally out of shape, should I start with a cutting phase or bulking?

    My story: I'm a 26 yr old male who has let himself get out of shape for the past 3-4 years (i was busy with school and exercising was the last on my mind). I am what you would call "skinny fat". My arms are small, but my stomach is big.

    When i was a teenager and in high school, i was super skinny and was trying to gain weight (I had some success and by the time i was 19 i was pretty happy with my body... i was still skinny but i was decently toned and had some muscle). I was definitely a hard gainer.

    So I am kind of afraid right now to jump into a cutting phase, because i doubt there is much muscle underneath all of this fat. I am sure a lot of the muscle I gained from my high school weight lifting is gone ...i just tested myself and i can't lift anything near what i could when i was 19.


    I'm 5'8 and around 155 lbs, and most of it is fat as stated.


    Would it be best in my case to bulk up before i start cutting? Or should i get rid of this fat first?
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    421

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    Well, since you're untrained now, you can cut and gain some strength and some size. IMO since you're probably 5-10lb away from being overweight, you should take the cutting route while on HST. Just make sure you're not starving yourself. Keep the protein content high and clean up the food to insure your diet isn't high in calories if you're not going to count them. Look into an intermittent fasting program if you're not big on eating all the time. Fast 5, Warrior Diet, etc. to name a couple.

    What you lifted when you were younger will mostly come back with speed. Love dat muscle memory. Though I don't know how it's affected with time.

    Stick to mostly compound movements, 1-2 exercises per muscle. Keep your exercise selection simple. And don't neglect your lower body.

    Best cardio to do IMO is any sort of explosive interval program, preferably one where you alternate sprinting with jogging. Check out HIIT. Do it on your off days.

    And lol, if most of your 155lb was fat, you wouldn't be able to move your limbs.
    Last edited by TangoDown; 07-06-2012 at 02:00 AM.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Michigan, USA
    Posts
    5,706

    Default

    If you have the willpower, I would kick your cut off with a 2 week PSMF/RFL type diet, then transition that into an IF - which will feel like you aren't dieting at all compared to the PSMF. If you did this, you would only want to lift twice a week during the PSMF portion and skip the cardio those two weeks or else keep the cardio very light. Then start lifting three times a week once you shift to IF and do cardio at least twice a week after this point. Do not worry too much about lifting super heavy during this period or pushing for new PRs or anything. Since you are out of shape and relatively untrained, any lifting will be enough stimulus to spare lean mass - and possibly even build a little.
    PRs:

    Squat - 485 lbs
    Bench - 315 lbs
    Deadlift - 635 lbs
    Total - 1435 lbs
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  4. #4

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    I've followed the renegade diet (if) with success. Both food choices and eating window fit very well in my lifestyle.

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    10

    Default

    Cool. Thanks guys.

    I've been cutting very slightly (200 calories less than maintenance...usually...i don't count calories every single day) for the past few weeks. I think you guys are right, since i am untrained I may be able to gain some strength and lose some fat at the same time.

    I've been doing some pretty simple HST three days a week and also cardio 3 days a week (1-2 of these are hiit).

    The HST exercises are:

    bench (barbell) press
    incline dumbbell bench press
    military press
    bent over row
    barbell curls

    I scrapped squats and deadlifts since my cardio is running (and sprinting) and that really taxes my legs. Maybe later on i can do some dead lifts after i am in better shape.


    Does that sound good? Any tips or suggestions on my exercise choices for my HST?
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