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  • Cutting for 4 months, advice going forward?

    Age: 24
    Height: 5'9''
    Weight: 170lbs
    Waist circumference: 31 inches

    Squat: 315
    Bench: 215
    Romanian Deadlift: 385 (gym only has hex plates)

    I've been training for a few years making decent progress on some BBM templates. Last year I joined the army I bulked up from 170 to a hefty 185lbs with a 37 inch waist before I realized... "Geez... Im fat..."

    Since then I've been cutting and trying to maintain/improve my lifts while bringing my waist size down as much as possible. I cut to about 172, eating 2200 calories/day before progress started stalling out. After a couple weeks at maintenance I dropped the calories to 2000 and pressed forward. Life sucked but the scale was moving again.

    At the moment I'm taking two weeks at maintenance because I'll be out in the field but after that I plan on jumping right back in.

    I'm considering pushing this cut all the way down to a 28-29 inch waist since I want abs, it will benefit my cardio (less of a priority at the moment), and I feel it will give me room to bulk. But I'm torn because I REALLY need more muscle mass. Especially in my upper body which has always been a struggle.

    Any advice would be appreciated!


  • #2
    It really depends what you want to do.

    If you want to gain more muscle mass, I'd do that in a slow manner after a few weeks of weight maintenance. You're not going to gain more muscle if you get leaner prior to reversing course, so you don't need to do that unless you just want to get leaner.
    Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
    ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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    • #3
      That's true, I want to be both leaner and more muscular but I need to determine which one takes priority at the moment.

      My waist is sitting at roughly 31.5 inches but I don't want to go above 33 inches. That puts me at roughly 175lbs and I can't imagine a slow 5lb bulk would let me put on much muscle at all. In that case would it just make more sense to keep cutting since I want to be leaner anyway? Or am I underestimating the value of a small 5lb weight gain period?

      Really appreciate the help Doc!

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      • #4
        Gaining 5lbs would probably be at least half muscle. That's not nothing and you have to start somewhere.....If you want to be bigger, take steps towards doing that. If you prefer to be leaner over being bigger, which is fine, do that.

        There is no perfect decision outside of your preferences.
        Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
        ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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        • #5
          You're right, either one will bring me closer to my goals. A small bulk would also be a good mental break from cutting. I'll maintain for a few weeks then run a small surplus.

          Thanks Doc!

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