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  1. #1
    Registered User Norhang's Avatar
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    Trouble gaining muscle while nursing

    Hello!

    I’ve significantly gained strength on the Starting Strength program. However, I am 8 months postpartum (tried bulking to build muscle and body fat raised to 24% so now I have cut to 21%). I am tracking macros (1g protein/lb bodyweight) however, my body fat at this point has seemed to stall....I seem to be losing muscle and fat at the same time thus keeping my bf at 21%. Has anyone experienced this? In general, I’m slow to build muscle which is why my body fat climbed so high in a bulk (despite only gaining 0.5-1 lb a week) and now staying the same bf while losing weight at 1 lb per week. Any advice or things to try would be much appreciated!

    My weight is 123 and I’m 5’6”. My squat is 127 at 5x3. Obviously I can get a lot stronger as I’m a beginner.
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  2. #2
    Registered User hardyboysare's Avatar
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    Post a pic if you are comfortable as I imagine you are using a body fat scale to estimate your bf%.

    These things are dreadful and completely reliable read this:-

    https://weightology.net/the-pitfalls...impedance-bia/

    As a female you should be aiming to gain around 1-1.5lb a month as women generally gain muscle slower then males therefore half the rate is best practice.

    If you are getting stronger whilst weight training and in a caloric surplus its very very unlikely you are losing muscle its near impossible. You could be gaining excess fat which will make any lean mass seem less visually but don't rely on a bf% measuring tools they are all useless for measuring anything that includes lean mass.

    Go by the mirror, weight changes, measurements and training performance. Also try not to spin your wheels when you see you have added a small amount of fat this happens when you are in a caloric surplus its part of the process of bulking. Limit the caloric surplus will limit the fat increase.
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    Registered User Norhang's Avatar
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    Ah, thank you. I was gaining too much weight per week then.

    Yes I am using a bf scale which I’ve heard to be unreliable. I’m using calipers as well just to make sure the numbers are going down.

    So I’ve backed off my calories to 2000, which is a deficit for me (losing 1 lb a week) and I’m still gaining strength. Should I stay here or should I go into a smaller calorie surplus to make the best of the gains?

    Thank you so much.
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    Registered User hardyboysare's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Norhang View Post
    Ah, thank you. I was gaining too much weight per week then.

    Yes I am using a bf scale which I’ve heard to be unreliable. I’m using calipers as well just to make sure the numbers are going down.

    So I’ve backed off my calories to 2000, which is a deficit for me (losing 1 lb a week) and I’m still gaining strength. Should I stay here or should I go into a smaller calorie surplus to make the best of the gains?

    Thank you so much.
    Personally I think you should have a small deficit your BMI is on the lower end of the scale of healthy therefore you need to take weight loss a touch slower. Cutting around 0.5-0.75lbs a week will allow better chance of building muscle/ retaining whilst losing weight.

    I would say around 2200 would be fine if you are still losing weight at the given rate stated above.
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  5. #5
    Focus on yourself kimm4's Avatar
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    When you're low end of the scale and lacking in muscle, there's nothing left to cut. Start your building process now.

    You'll be fine and good luck!
    National Level Competitor (Female BB)

    Nutrition Coach/Trainer:
    http://www.iron-kim.com
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  6. #6
    Registered User Norhang's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by hardyboysare View Post
    Personally I think you should have a small deficit your BMI is on the lower end of the scale of healthy therefore you need to take weight loss a touch slower. Cutting around 0.5-0.75lbs a week will allow better chance of building muscle/ retaining whilst losing weight.

    I would say around 2200 would be fine if you are still losing weight at the given rate stated above.
    That’s what I was thinking so thank you so much for confirming! I really appreciate it.
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    Registered User Norhang's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by kimm4 View Post
    When you're low end of the scale and lacking in muscle, there's nothing left to cut. Start your building process now.

    You'll be fine and good luck!
    Thank you so much! It gives me such motivation!!
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    Registered User Norhang's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by kimm4 View Post
    When you're low end of the scale and lacking in muscle, there's nothing left to cut. Start your building process now.

    You'll be fine and good luck!
    If you were me with my stats what would you recommend I do going forward in terms of number of calories, rate or gain etc.
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  9. #9
    Registered User hardyboysare's Avatar
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    hardyboysare is offline
    Originally Posted by Norhang View Post
    If you were me with my stats what would you recommend I do going forward in terms of number of calories, rate or gain etc.
    I am making an estimated guess on what Kim would recommend. It is time you carry a phase of caloric surplus following a decent training program. As for your calories whatever your maintenance TDEE is plus 200 would be my advice.

    A full body pic would help in pointing the correct direction but your BMI indicates a phase of muscle building is required more then a cut phase.

    This here explains all just take weight gain slower as you are female:-

    https://igoodies.000webhostapp.com/?viagra=showt...hp?t=173439001
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