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  1. #1
    Registered User MedicalAuthor's Avatar
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    Critique nutrition from my last bulk, plus progress pics!

    Hi All,

    Firstly, I just updated my progress photos in My Bodyspace. I have photos from the end of my cut (July 8th) and end of my bulk (Dec 14th).

    A quick recap of my recent journey: January 1st of 2019 I started a cut after a couple years away from the gym. Went from 181 to 155 on July 8th. Then I transitioned to a bulk with Fierce 5 Intermediate. I bulked until December 15 and ended at 171 pounds. I've been cutting for the last two months, continuing to use Fierce 5, and am now at 158 pounds and nearing the end of my cut.

    During the bulk I made good strength gains with Fierce 5 and kept my weight gain steady but I didn't really feel like I saw much change in the mirror and after cutting I'm not sure I can see much of a different between me now and me back in July. So basically entering into this next round of bulking I'm trying to troubleshoot and figure out what I need.

    Here's some of my progress broken down into groups:


    Strength Gains


    Max lifts on 07/08/2019:
    Squat: 230
    DL: 325
    BP: 225

    Max Lifts on 12/15/2019
    Squat: 265
    DL: 375
    BP: 255

    During the cut so far strength has been up and down. Haven't maxed out but RDL are at 295@8x3, Squat is at 220@5x3, bench is around 210@5x3

    Weight Gain

    Here's an export of my weight during my bulk:

    2019-07-06 155
    2019-07-13 157.8
    2019-07-20 158
    2019-07-27 157
    2019-08-03 157.8
    2019-08-10 158.6
    2019-08-16 158
    2019-08-24 159.8
    2019-08-30 160
    2019-09-07 163
    2019-09-12 161.8
    2019-09-13 162
    2019-09-21 163.2
    2019-09-27 164.2
    2019-09-29 163.6
    2019-10-05 162.6
    2019-10-11 163.2
    2019-10-19 164
    2019-10-29 166
    2019-11-02 164.6
    2019-11-08 164.8
    2019-11-14 167
    2019-11-15 166.2
    2019-11-16 165.4
    2019-11-19 167.4
    2019-11-20 167
    2019-11-21 166.8
    2019-11-22 165.4
    2019-11-24 167
    2019-11-26 167.6
    2019-11-29 168.6
    2019-12-03 169.4
    2019-12-04 168.6
    2019-12-06 169.4
    2019-12-07 168.2
    2019-12-14 171.2


    Nutrition


    I track everything in MyFitness Pal and weigh all my food. Here's an example from December 10th, when I was taking in 2750 calories a day.

    Breakfast:
    One cup non-fat, plain greek yogurt
    One scoop Optimum Nutrition Whey
    1 Banana (126g)
    0.5 cup roasted, unsalted mixed nuts.

    Snack
    One cup oatmeal
    3 boiled eggs
    1 honeycrisp apple (154g)

    Lunch:
    Salad from salad bar. Usually consists of meat like turkey or chicken, various greens and veggies, chickpeas, and blue cheese dressing
    504 calories total (42.5g carbs, 17.4g fat, 51.5g protein. Estimated how much of each ingredient I was putting in and used a nutrition fact sheet from a salad store to aggregate)

    Snack:
    Avocado Toast (1/2 avocado (1.6ounces), 2 slices whole grain bread, 4 ounces smoked salmon)

    Dinner
    Lamb Stew Meat (0.4lb raw)
    Baked sweet potato (13 ounces raw)
    That day my nutrition breakdown was Carbs: 299g (41%), Fat 94g (29%), Protein 213g (30%).

    I gained about an average of a pound a week during that month.

    This wasn't reflected in that day but most days instead of the yogurt/whey/nuts I'd start the morning with overnight oats, consisting of: 1 cup oatmeal, 1 scoop whey, 1 cup almond milk (unsweetened, ~30 cals), 1 banana, 1/3 cup non-fat plain yogurt. Then I wouldn't have oatmeal later in the day. Otherwise that was a typical day of nutrition and I was (and still am) pretty strict. At times I would have snacks like dark chocolate almond butter cups but nothing substantially different from what's above and everything was tracked.

    Looking for any advice/critique! Also if you think I'm doing just fine and am not seeing obvious gains, I'm fine hearing that, too!
    Last edited by MedicalAuthor; 02-18-2020 at 12:08 PM. Reason: Updating nutrition info, added portion sizes
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  2. #2
    team ketchup AdamWW's Avatar
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    Well, you mentioned portions, not food weights... one avocado could be 100 grams, or 300+ grams... so... you don't really have an idea of how many calories you're eating.
    The power of carbs compels me!
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    Dam bro, you got it all figured out. I’m here still eating whatever is best lmao.
    “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent; it is the one most adaptable to change.” -Charles Darwin, 1809
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    Registered User MedicalAuthor's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    Well, you mentioned portions, not food weights... one avocado could be 100 grams, or 300+ grams... so... you don't really have an idea of how many calories you're eating.
    Well, I weigh all my food and reflect that in my tracking in MyFitnessPal. I just listed what I had from that day to keep it simple and the calories/macros for that day are reflected in the totals I listed.

    From that day, though, revised:

    Breakfast:
    One cup non-fat, plain greek yogurt
    One scoop Optimum Nutrition Whey
    1 Banana (126g)
    0.5 cup roasted, unsalted mixed nuts.

    Snack
    One cup oatmeal
    3 boiled eggs
    1 honeycrisp apple (154g)

    Lunch:
    Salad from salad bar. Usually consists of meat like turkey or chicken, various greens and veggies, chickpeas, and blue cheese dressing
    504 calories total (42.5g carbs, 17.4g fat, 51.5g protein. Estimated how much of each ingredient I was putting in and used a nutrition fact sheet from a salad store to aggregate)

    Snack:
    Avocado Toast ((actually 1/2) avocado (1.6ounces), 2 slices whole grain bread, 4 ounces smoked salmon)

    Dinner
    Lamb Stew Meat (0.4lb raw)
    Baked sweet potato (13 ounces raw)

    Hope that helps!
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    Registered User MedicalAuthor's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by risingstarl96a1 View Post
    Dam bro, you got it all figured out. I’m here still eating whatever is best lmao.
    I feel like I don't, haha. Hopefully the detail helps with getting some advice. Feels like my muscle mass gains were stagnant :\
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    You have a year of training under your belt with a strength focus.

    You need more hypertrophy work with higher rep ranges then you will see more of a change in your physique. The combination of low-rep/strength-focused training and higher-rep/hypertrophy-focused training. Progressive overload. Maybe something like a 4 day split.
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    Registered User MedicalAuthor's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1MANU View Post
    You have a year of training under your belt with a strength focus.

    You need more hypertrophy work with higher rep ranges then you will see more of a change in your physique. The combination of low-rep/strength-focused training and higher-rep/hypertrophy-focused training. Progressive overload. Maybe something like a 4 day split.
    Thank you! To clarify a little I have been weight-lifting since I was 14 (I'm 32). For the 2 years prior to January 2019 I had been sporadically in and out of the gym, nothing consistent, due to new father/medical schooling.

    From my understanding, Fierce 5 was designed to be hypertrophy focused? I have been doing intermediate, btw
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    Originally Posted by MedicalAuthor View Post
    Thank you! To clarify a little I have been weight-lifting since I was 14 (I'm 32). For the 2 years prior to January 2019 I had been sporadically in and out of the gym, nothing consistent, due to new father/medical schooling.

    From my understanding, Fierce 5 was designed to be hypertrophy focused? I have been doing intermediate, btw
    It's more strength than hypertrophy - IMO. Primarily geared for building strength. Also, it is great for beginners. If you have this much experience (even if inconsistent) you should move on to something a bit more advanced.

    If you want to actually change your physique and focus on muscle growth, then your best option is to pick programs that have you working in the 8–15 rep range, with a lot more volume (Sets/reps). Still squat and deadlift and keep them as mainstays but broaden exercises, sets, and reps.
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    Registered User MedicalAuthor's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1MANU View Post
    It's more strength than hypertrophy - IMO. Primarily geared for building strength. Also, it is great for beginners. If you have this much experience (even if inconsistent) you should move on to something a bit more advanced.

    If you want to actually change your physique and focus on muscle growth, then your best option is to pick programs that have you working in the 8–15 rep range, with a lot more volume (Sets/reps). Still squat and deadlift and keep them as mainstays but broaden exercises, sets, and reps.
    I can dig it. Any recommendations from this site? I might post in the Workout Programs for recommendations as well.

    Thanks so much!
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    Originally Posted by MedicalAuthor View Post
    I can dig it. Any recommendations from this site? I might post in the Workout Programs for recommendations as well.

    Thanks so much!
    No problem. There is a well designed program by Mark Lobliner. Many people dislike him but he knows his stuff. Have to Google it but called something like Core 4 hypertrophy strength program. Something like that.

    Give it a shot. See how you do.
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    Registered User MedicalAuthor's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1MANU View Post
    No problem. There is a well designed program by Mark Lobliner. Many people dislike him but he knows his stuff. Have to Google it but called something like Core 4 hypertrophy strength program. Something like that.

    Give it a shot. See how you do.
    I just found it, thanks! It looks fairly similar to fierce 5 in that fierce 5 combines low reps and high reps. For example, bench x5 reps then incline bench x8 reps and then later in the week flyes at 10 reps. Leg curls, calf raises, an work, accessory muscles all at higher reps.

    Am I missing something? (Not being facetious genuinely curious/trying to understand)

    Thanks again!
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    Originally Posted by MedicalAuthor View Post
    I just found it, thanks! It looks fairly similar to fierce 5 in that fierce 5 combines low reps and high reps. For example, bench x5 reps then incline bench x8 reps and then later in the week flyes at 10 reps. Leg curls, calf raises, an work, accessory muscles all at higher reps.

    Am I missing something? (Not being facetious genuinely curious/trying to understand)

    Thanks again!
    Its higher volume, higher rep range for majority of exercises, increased number of exercises, and with increased frequency in terms of training days - from what I remember. You are welcome to stick to your program.
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  13. #13
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    At the level you're at you should only gain 1-2 pounds per month. Even slower can work.

    If your current program allows you to get stronger I see no reason to change it.
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