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  #1  
Unread 11-04-2017, 05:10 AM
Gadsie Gadsie is offline
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Default Gaining weight, not getting stronger

First post here, so hello all.
I've been lifting for years (too long to justify my lack of progress). I finished a cut 2 months ago, at a low of 11.7% bodyfat (DEXA) at 6'1, 165lbs. So for the past 2 months I have been bulking. In the first 3 weeks I made nice steady strength progress, but then completely stalled. I will take the incline bench as an example (on of my main lifts). Started at 176lbsx5, worked my way up to 181lbsx5 and have been there for a month, sometimes even regressing in reps a bit.

I won't get into the details of my routine, but I do "full body" 3x a week, with a different priority muscle group each workout. So on "chest day" I will first do the heavy weight, low rep compounds (incline bench and OHP) and then do all the high volume benching, flyes etc. Then at the end just hit 2 sets of weighted chinups and squats. Same goes for back and leg day.

For this past month that I have not been gaining strength on any lifts, I have gained 1.5 lbs. I eat 200g+ of protein a day (mainly milk and greek yogurt). I don't feel like I am gaining tons of fat (here's a pic from this week https://imgur.com/gallery/cEDhJ), but since I'm not gaining strength but yet gaining weight, I figure it has to be fat. What could I be doing wrong?

I will note that I care about aesthetics, not strength, but strength is an easier measure.
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  #2  
Unread 11-04-2017, 06:25 PM
BigPecsPeter BigPecsPeter is offline
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You have gained 1.5lbs in a month. I'm guessing in the three weeks prior to that, maybe a pound. 2.5lbs gain in seven weeks? What sort of a bulk is THAT supposed to be!

You are 6'1 and weigh less than 170lbs. You're quite lean already. For your current weight and body composition, where are you expecting this new muscle mass to pop out from? Thin air?

Do some *real* actual bulking for goodness sake; then come back and complain that it isn't working.

And for now, perhaps do a two week backcycle. Then start again

Last edited by BigPecsPeter : 11-04-2017 at 06:32 PM.
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  #3  
Unread 11-04-2017, 06:37 PM
kc2010 kc2010 is offline
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You may not be doing anything wrong. If you have been at this for years, using decent training routines, proper diet, fostering proper recovery, etc., it could be a simple as you having reached the final quartile of your genetic potential, where further gains become harder and harder to come by. I believe that's where I am in my training career. I'm experiencing much the same situation as you are reporting, where bulking cycle gains are mostly fat (as evidenced by very little progress on lifts, and the results of cuts)...every additional rep, every additional pound on the bar takes longer and longer to achieve, as in weeks, if not months depending on the lift in question. Depressing...yes, it can be, but reality as a natural lifter that's been training for years, it is without a doubt.

Now, that is NOT to say that that is what explains the wall you're hitting. It may be wholly the reason, it may be just a contributing factor, it's hard to say. But given where I am and the fact that I've had the same complaints for some time now, that's the first thing that popped into my mind. Hope that's not yet the case for you, because it stinks. Could just be a matter of needing to employ more advanced training techniques to stimulate the gains again.

Best of luck.
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  #4  
Unread 11-04-2017, 07:21 PM
loc loc is offline
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Could try a deload, increasing the frequency of your training for each bodypart (like 1.5-2x/week), try periodizing your training a bit more, among other things. I'd start with a deload and go from there.
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  #5  
Unread 11-05-2017, 12:15 AM
BigPecsPeter BigPecsPeter is offline
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Quite honestly, I think there's a clear instance here of overly cautious weight gain while there isn't much to really 'recompose' as such.

Why would anybody be suggesting genetic limits at this stage? Totally wack. I mean, it MIGHT be the case, but it's definitely not the first thing to go to given the story OP tells in his post.

- 6'1"
- sub 77kg
- low body fat even by DEXA; with that height and weight, that's damn skinny, bro.

It's no surprise that not much new muscle is going to be synthesized living around those statistics.

If OP got up to say 82kg or something, he might see things start to happen.
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  #6  
Unread 11-05-2017, 01:37 AM
kc2010 kc2010 is offline
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Yeah, I know. The irony of the statement "I've been lifting for years (too long to justify my lack of progress)" planted the genetic limit approach idea in my head. I may not have even thought of it as a possibility (however likely or not) if it weren't for that.

Definitely agree that an increase in calories (via mostly carbs and perhaps some fat; protein at 200+gm/day is probably fine already) is warranted and something to try for a while. With the holidays coming up, there will be plenty of calories around to be had.
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  #7  
Unread 11-05-2017, 05:13 AM
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Hectic Hectic is offline
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you need to deload and restart your training cycle

when you restart it should be easier than what you were doing.by the end it should be harder. then deload again

then when you restart again it should be easier than when you last finished but harder than when you last started then when you finish your second cycle you should be lifting slightly more than you were at the end of your first cycle

each cycle should probably be 4-8 weeks depending on when you start to regress you want to finish and deload before that happens
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  #8  
Unread 11-05-2017, 05:19 AM
BigPecsPeter BigPecsPeter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hectic View Post
you need to deload and restart your training cycle

when you restart it should be easier than what you were doing.by the end it should be harder. then deload again

then when you restart again it should be easier than when you last finished but harder than when you last started then when you finish your second cycle you should be lifting slightly more than you were at the end of your first cycle

each cycle should probably be 4-8 weeks depending on when you start to regress you want to finish and deload before that happens
This.

And fgs eat dammit. You're not going to conjure muscle out of thin air. You don't have the mass presently to support any muscle growth
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  #9  
Unread 11-05-2017, 07:45 AM
LightCrow LightCrow is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadsie View Post
First post here, so hello all.
I've been lifting for years (too long to justify my lack of progress). I finished a cut 2 months ago, at a low of 11.7% bodyfat (DEXA) at 6'1, 165lbs. So for the past 2 months I have been bulking. In the first 3 weeks I made nice steady strength progress, but then completely stalled. I will take the incline bench as an example (on of my main lifts). Started at 176lbsx5, worked my way up to 181lbsx5 and have been there for a month, sometimes even regressing in reps a bit.

I won't get into the details of my routine, but I do "full body" 3x a week, with a different priority muscle group each workout. So on "chest day" I will first do the heavy weight, low rep compounds (incline bench and OHP) and then do all the high volume benching, flyes etc. Then at the end just hit 2 sets of weighted chinups and squats. Same goes for back and leg day.

For this past month that I have not been gaining strength on any lifts, I have gained 1.5 lbs. I eat 200g+ of protein a day (mainly milk and greek yogurt). I don't feel like I am gaining tons of fat (here's a pic from this week https://imgur.com/gallery/cEDhJ), but since I'm not gaining strength but yet gaining weight, I figure it has to be fat. What could I be doing wrong?

I will note that I care about aesthetics, not strength, but strength is an easier measure.
Is that 1.5 lb gain just a one time measurement or an average over a few days? An incline bench greater than 1x BW is not a bad lift at all. Maybe you need something with slightly less frequency per bodpyart than full body, but more volume. Maybe try the GBR? Schoenfeld said he has a study coming out showing 2x a week is more optimal than 3x for hypertrophy.
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  #10  
Unread 11-05-2017, 10:09 AM
BigPecsPeter BigPecsPeter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LightCrow View Post
Is that 1.5 lb gain just a one time measurement or an average over a few days? An incline bench greater than 1x BW is not a bad lift at all. Maybe you need something with slightly less frequency per bodpyart than full body, but more volume. Maybe try the GBR? Schoenfeld said he has a study coming out showing 2x a week is more optimal than 3x for hypertrophy.
He was quite clear: he gained 1.5lbs in one month. A truly epic bulk

For the record OP, with your stats, if you're bulking according to any sensible guidelines, a weight increase of 1.5lbs should take A MAXIMUM of around half a month. No more than that

Last edited by BigPecsPeter : 11-05-2017 at 10:20 AM.
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